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SBLI CEO Robert Sheridan Elected Chair of University of Massachusetts Building Authority

BOSTON-Robert K. Sheridan, President and CEO of The Savings Bank Life Insurance Company of Massachusetts (SBLI), has been selected to lead the University of Massachusetts Building Authority. Sheridan, who most recently served as vice chairman of the Authority, was elected chair at the October 1 UMass Building Authority meeting. He succeeds former chair and UMass Dartmouth alumnus William E. Giblin, who is retiring from the board.

Sheridan was a member of the University of Massachusetts Board of Trustees from 2002 to 2007, serving in a variety of positions including vice chairman of the Board.

UMass President Jack M. Wilson praised Sheridan's extensive and continuing service to the University, describing Sheridan as someone who, "puts public service first and makes an enormous contribution to the University of Massachusetts and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts."

President Wilson said the University of Massachusetts Building Authority will help to, "transform our campuses under Bob Sheridan's leadership."

President Wilson added: "Bob Sheridan's leadership of the Building Authority will be invaluable to the University as we continue to move forward our plans to invest in 21st century facilities across all five UMass campuses. His considerable experience in the insurance and banking industries, together with his longstanding service to the University make him extremely well-suited for this important position."

Sheridan said he was delighted to serve the University in his new role. "I am pleased to have been elected chairman of the UMass Building Authority. We have an important role to play as our public research University continues its plans to expand and upgrade facilities, plans that rely on the Building Authority's ability to borrow funds and manage complex projects," said Sheridan. "I look forward to working with my fellow Authority members and senior UMass leaders as the Authority's projects provide UMass students, faculty and staff with the state-of-the-art facilities that they need."

David MacKenzie, Executive Director of the UMass Building Authority, lauded Sheridan's election and praised outgoing chair William Giblin for his leadership of the Authority's board for four years and his 12 years of service on the Building Authority: "Bob Sheridan's wisdom, experience and leadership are important assets to the UMass Building Authority. I also want to thank William Giblin for his distinguished leadership of the Authority, particularly for the significant progress that has been achieved during this last decade, when the University completed $1.7 billion in capital projects across all of the UMass campuses."

Sheridan was appointed to his current term on the UMass Building Authority board by Governor Deval Patrick in January 2008 and the five-year term extends until June 30, 2013.

At the October meeting, current UMass Trustee Richard J. Lawton, an attorney in private practice, was elected to fill the open vice chairman position vacated by Sheridan. UMass Amherst alumnus Paul J. Carney will maintain his duties as secretary-treasurer.

The University of Massachusetts Building Authority is a public authority of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, established by Chapter 773 of the Acts of 1960.  The Authority is responsible for the provision of new academic, athletics and residential facilities on UMass campuses and for the renovation of existing buildings.  Construction is funded primarily through tax exempt bonds issued by the Authority.

This September, the University of Massachusetts Board of Trustees approved a $2.56 billion, five-year capital plan for new construction and renovation projects on the University's five campuses. The plan is contingent upon the University generating funding from four key sources: University operating funds, funds borrowed by the University, state funds and private/federal funding.

Sheridan was a member of the University of Massachusetts Board of Trustees from 2002 through 2007 and he served on the UMass Building Authority during his tenure as a Trustee. At various times during his tenure on the Board of Trustees, he held the positions of Vice Chairman of the Board, Vice Chairman of the Administration and Finance Committee, Chairman of the Athletics Committee and Vice Chairman of the Committee on Academics and Student Affairs.  He also served on the 2003-2004 UMass President's Search Committee, the Governance Committee, the Worcester City Campus Corporation, the UMass Amherst Chancellor Search Committee and was Chairman of the UMass Lowell Ice Hockey Task Force. Sheridan also serves on the University of Massachusetts Foundation Board of Directors.

He is a member of the Massachusetts Bar, and currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the New England Center for Children, a member of the Executive Committee of the New England Council, a member of the Board of Trustees of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, Chairman of the Massachusetts Affordable Housing Alliance Capital Campaign, a member of the Dean's Advisory Committee of Suffolk Law School, and a member of the Chief Executives' Club of Boston.   He also serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Life Insurance Association of Massachusetts.

Sheridan has received numerous awards and honors including:  the 1998 Medal of Hope Award from the Organization for a New Equality, the Grand Bostonian Award in 2004, the 2005 Progress and Promise Award from the American Liver Foundation, and the 2007 Children of Promise Award from the New England Center for Children.  Sheridan and his wife Jean O'Hara Sheridan were recently honored by the Massachusetts Affordable Housing Alliance which dedicated its new home ownership center in Dorchester to them. The Sheridans reside in Hingham.

Giblin is President and Chief Executive Officer of Tweave, Incorporated in Norton and also served for 10 years on the University of Massachusetts Board of Trustees.

Libby DeVecchi, UMass, 617-287-7023


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