Committee Members

The University of Massachusetts Board of Trustees has established a committee to conduct a global search for a new chancellor of the University of Massachusetts Boston.

The search committee is tasked with seeking, interviewing and recommending to the Board the strongest possible candidates for the position of Chancellor of the University of Massachusetts Boston. To learn more about the committee members, please view their biographies.

Chair of the Search Committee

  • Henry M. Thomas III, president and CEO, Urban League of Springfield; former chairman of the UMass Board of Trustees. Read the chairman's full biography here.


Dr. Jane Adams, department chair of psychology; professor, college of liberal arts, UMass Boston

Dr. Jane AdamsJane Adams, Ph.D., is Department Chair of Psychology in the College of Liberal Arts at the University of Massachusetts Boston. She is a neurodevelopmental toxicologist whose research focuses on the consequences of prenatal exposure to certain prescription medications as well as other agents. Her current research focuses primarily on the effects upon child neuropsychological development following in utero exposure to antiepileptic drugs.

Her research has been supported by the National Institutes of Child Health and Development, the National Alliance for Autism Research, the March of Dimes, and Pfizer, Inc. Dr. Adams serves as Editor-in-Chief of the journal, Neurotoxicology and Teratology. She has served as a Past President of the Neurobehavioral Teratology Society and has held multiple elected positions in this society as well as in the Teratology Society. Dr. Adams teaches Behavioral Neuroscience (Psy 260), Psychopharmacology (Psy 362), Neurotoxicology (Psy 490), and Pharmacotherapy for Mental Health Disorders (Psy 662).


Lisa Calise, senior vice president for administration and finance, UMass

Lisa A. Calise

Lisa A. Calise was most recently the Chief Financial Officer at Watertown-based Perkins School for the Blind, focusing on global services and education for those living with blindness and deafblindness. Before joining Perkins in 2010, Lisa served the City of Boston for over a decade, most recently as the Director of Administration and Finance, and previously as Chief Financial Officer and Collector-Treasurer and Budget Director, implementing efficiency improvements and managing the City’s finances through challenging economic times.

Prior to coming to Boston, Lisa served in the White House Office of Management and Budget as a budget examiner.

A Massachusetts native, Lisa obtained her B.A. from Boston College and a Master's Degree in Public Management from the University of Maryland. She recently served as a member of both the MBTA Finance and Management Control Board and MassDOT Board.



Richard P. Campbell, former member, UMass Board of Trustees; UMass Boston alumnus

Richard CampbellRichard P. Campbell is the founder of Campbell Campbell Edwards & Conroy, a firm comprised of more than 45 lawyers engaged exclusively in a national trial practice primarily defending institutional clients. He now serves as Counsel to the firm. He is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers and is certified as a Civil Trial Advocate by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. The Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section ("TIPS") of the American Bar Association named him the 2009 recipient of its Andrew C. Hecker Memorial Award for Excellence, recognizing his leadership, outreach, enthusiasm and professionalism. In 2001, the Massachusetts Defense Lawyers Association named him “Defense Lawyer of the Year.”

After graduating from the University of Massachusetts Boston, Mr. Campbell earned his law degree, cum laude, from Boston College Law School. In 1995, Boston College Law School presented him with its highest award, the Founder's Medal, for his achievements and dedication to the law. He was the Founding Chair of the Board of Overseers for Boston College Law School and served in that role for seven years. He now serves as a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council. Boston College Law School also awarded Mr. Campbell the William J. Kenealy, S. J. Alumnus of the Year.

Mr. Campbell has been admitted to practice in all courts of Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Florida, the federal courts of Connecticut, Vermont, the Northern, Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, the Eastern District of Michigan, the Court of Appeals for the First and District of Columbia Circuits and the United States Supreme Court. He remains an active member of the Massachusetts and Florida bars. He serves as a member of the Massachusetts Bar Association’s Ethics Committee and Amicus Committee. He publishes “Privilege to Practice”, a regular column on ethics and professionalism, in the Massachusetts Bar Journal.

Throughout his career, Mr. Campbell primarily represented national and international corporations in complex cases, including multi-district litigation, class actions, aviation, environmental, toxic torts and products liability disputes. He is currently serving as counsel for a group of corporate defendants in the Flint Michigan contaminated drinking water class actions. Mr. Campbell also represented clients in commercial disputes, including contests over the control of closely held corporations. He served as one of seven national trial counsel for Caterpillar Inc., and, in August 2009, after five years of contentious litigation, concluded a nationally certified class action against it with decertification of the class, an involuntary dismissal with prejudice and an assessment of costs against the class representative. He is also lead trial counsel for one of the commercial airlines in the litigation pending in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York arising out of the terrorist attacks of September 11th.

A leader of state, national, and international bar associations, he is a past President of the Massachusetts Bar Association and a past Chair of the 34,000 member Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section ("TIPS") of the American Bar Association. After September 11th, the President of the American Bar Association appointed him to the ABA's Task Force on Terrorism and the Law. He also served as Chair of the ABA TIPS' Task Force on the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund. Mr. Campbell has served as Director of the National Trial Academy at the National Judicial College in Reno, Nevada (sponsored by the ABA and ABOTA), and as a faculty member of the IADC Trial Academy (now at Stanford Law School in California). Mr. Campbell served as a member of the ABA Presidential Task Force on the Future of Legal Education.

He has published numerous articles on privacy, confidential information and the Constitution, including the lead article for the Boston College Law Review titled The Protective Order in Products Liability Litigation: Safeguard or Misnomer? and a substantial monograph on Protective Orders and Related Constitutional Questions which he presented to the Product Liability Advisory Council. He was a contributing author for Matthew Bender's 1992 book, Products Liability, His publications pertaining to aviation include September 11th "Victim Compensation Fund: A Model for the Future?", published in the Connecticut Insurance Law Journal, and "America Acts: Swift Legislative Responses to the September 11th Attacks", published in the Defense Counsel Journal.

Featured in Boston Magazine, Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly and Boston Business Journal, Mr. Campbell is also a frequent resource for television and radio programs on topics such as litigation, social host liability and the law.

Mr. Campbell has received Distinguished Alumnus Awards on two separate occasions from the University of Massachusetts Boston, has been a member of its Founders Circle since 2008, serves on its Board of Visitors, and currently serves as Co-Chair of its Capital Fund Committee. On May 30, 2014, the University of Massachusetts Boston presented him with its Chancellor‘s Medal for distinguished service to the University. On September 6, 2011 he was appointed to the University of Massachusetts Board of Trustees, where he chaired the Task Force on University Law School. He served on several other Board Committees. On November 21, 2011, Governor Patrick appointed him to the University of Massachusetts Building Authority, where he chaired its Real Estate Committee.


Dr. Julie Chen, vice chancellor for research and innovation, UMass Lowell

Julie ChenJulie Chen, Ph.D., is considered one of the nation’s leading experts on nanotechnology and innovations in materials processing and manufacturing. She directs UMass Lowell’s $65 million research enterprise, which spans all academic departments and 14 research and engagement centers and institutes.

Chen has served on editorial boards, advisory committees and review panels for several journals and federal agencies, including the National Science Foundation (NSF), the National Institutes of Health, the National Academies, U.S. Department of Energy, Department of Defense, and has also testified before the U.S. House of Representatives and briefed the Massachusetts Legislature. She has also served as the 2010 Technical Program Chair for the ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition.

As Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation, Chen carries out UMass Lowell’s mission to grow the innovation economy by overseeing the transfer of technology toward applications, and ensuring that research partners—which include large corporations and various federal and state agencies – are well served.

Chen brings the experience she gained as a program director and proposal reviewer for the NSF to her current role overseeing the faculty’s federal grant submissions. From 2002-2004, she served as an NSF program director in its Materials Processing & Manufacturing and Nanomanufacturing Programs.

She served as one of the three founding co-directors of the UMass Lowell Nanomanufacturing Center (she was responsible for the state-funded Center of Excellence component), is the co-director of the UMass Lowell Advanced Composite Materials and Textile Research Laboratory and is a member of the UMass Lowell Wind Energy Research Group.

At the Massachusetts State House, Chen co-led a spring 2011 briefing on the importance of state matching funds in securing federal research grants. She also testified before the U.S. House Subcommittee on Research and Science Education, on “The Transfer of National Nanotechnology Initiative Research Outcomes for Commercial and Public Benefit” in 2008.

With more than 20 years of experience as a faculty member in mechanical engineering, her research into mechanical behavior and deformation of fiber and composite structures has helped to prevent manufacturing defects, improve performance, and create new innovations in experimental characterization and manufacturing.

Chen received her Ph.D., M.S. and B.S. degrees from MIT in Mechanical Engineering.


Edward W. Collins Jr., former member, UMass Board of Trustees; labor representative

Edward R. CollinsEdward W. Collins, Jr. is a retired International Representative of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) after having served 29 years as an officer of the Massachusetts AFL/CIO.

He served as a member of the University of Massachusetts Board of Trustees from September 2007 to September, 2017. Before joining the UMass Board of Trustees, Mr. Collins served as a Trustee at Westfield State College from 1990 to 1995.

Mr. Collins is a graduate of Springfield Technical Community College and serves on the Executive Committee of the Massachusetts Democratic Party. He periodically serves as an Instructor at the School of Industrial and Labor Relations of The Labor Guild of the Arch Diocese of Boston.

Mr. Collins served as a member of the University of Massachusetts President’s Search Committees in 2010 and 2015.

Edward H. D’Alelio, treasurer, UMass Foundation Board of Directors; UMass Boston alumnus

Edward H. D’AlelioEdward H. D’Alelio was formerly a Managing Director and CIO for Fixed Income at Putnam Investments where he retired in 2002. While at Putnam he served on the Management Committee and Risk Management Committee, overseeing all investments. In addition, he served on the Investment Policy and Asset Allocation Committees. Mr. D’Alelio has over thirty years of experience in investing and portfolio management, most of which has been in the mutual fund industry.

He is knowledgeable in all aspects of the mutual fund industry, including performance measurement, attribution, risk control, compliance and oversight. He is currently an Executive in Residence at the University of Massachusetts Boston’s School of Management. Mr. D’Alelio is Chair of the Investment Committee of the UMass Foundation and is also a member of the UMass Memorial Hospital Investment Committee and serves on its corporate board. He is on the board of Carador Inc., an offshore Irish based fund investing in bank loans and CLO equity.

Additionally, he was a corporate director of Trump Entertainment Resorts, Bluewater Inc., Engage Inc., MOAEC Inc., Archibald Candy, and Doane Pet Care. He is a graduate of the University of Mass Boston and has an MBA from Boston University.

Dr. Charlie Desmond, former chair, Massachusetts Board of Higher Education; CEO, Inversant

Dr. Charles F. DesmondDr. Charles F. Desmond was appointed Chair of the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education by Governor Deval Patrick in 2008 after serving as the Executive Vice President of the Trefler Foundation for six years. Prior to Trefler, he worked for thirty years at the University of Massachusetts Boston. He has also served as a counselor at Northeastern University’s African American Institute and in the Boston Public Schools.

Charles is the past president of AARP Massachusetts and now serves on its executive committee. He served on the Board of Governors for the Northeast and Islands Regional Educational Laboratory at Brown University and on Brown's Annenberg Institute for School Reform. He chaired Cambridge College’s Board of Trustees and co-chaired the Great Cities’ Universities Urban Educator Corps. A Fulbright Scholar, Charles earned his EdD in instructional leadership from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and a BS in sociology from Northeastern University. He is a US Army veteran, earning both the Bronze and Silver Stars while serving in Vietnam.

Dr. Mary K. Grant, chancellor, University of North Carolina Asheville; incoming president, Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate; UMass Boston alumna 

Dr. Mary K. GrantDr. Mary K. Grant was appointed in August 2014 as the seventh chancellor of UNC Asheville, after serving for 12 years as president of Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA). During her first two years, she established UNC Asheville as a center for creativity, innovation, and excellence in the public liberal arts, bringing the community to the table for events such as the annual farm-to-table dinner on the Quad, and expanding access to higher education while increasing enrollment in North Carolina’s public liberal arts university.

Dr. Grant’s leadership in strategic institutional growth encouraged a transformation of campus for the 21st century, with construction projects underway for UNC Asheville’s first apartment-style student residences and renovations to the Highsmith Student Union, followed by renovations to two academic buildings Owen and Carmichael Halls. These projects represent $67 million in campus construction or renovations, including $21.1 million funded through Connect NC bonds, on which Dr. Grant led the efforts to secure.

The university also opened STEAM Studio – an innovative space for engineering and design in the River Arts Makers Place, providing a pathway for students to make their careers and establishing a driving force in the creative economy. It is the rich creative talent both in the region and the university that has led to increased interest in combining elements of art and engineering into the curriculum. A reinvigorated partnership with The Center for Craft, Creativity & Design has resulted in the launch of the university’s Center for Creative Entrepreneurship, and more than $1 million in funding to bring UNC Asheville expertise in the humanities and liberal arts into downtown Asheville. A $1.5 million grant from the N.C GlaxoSmithKline Foundation elevates undergraduate research in chemistry and biology.

This clear focus on student success and academic rigor remain at the heart of a UNC Asheville education, defined as directions in the university’s strategic plan, developed and implemented under Dr. Grant’s leadership. Through this strategic planning, she fostered a deep commitment to supporting diverse and inclusive communities, making innovation a core competency, and renewing attention toward sustainability – all core values of UNC Asheville. Extracurricular experiences and community engagement complete the plan and enrich modern scholars.

Engaging the community is a major goal of Dr. Grant. Whether it is hosting world renowned speakers or national undergraduate research events, the university is better connected to the region than ever before. The growth of the university and city of Asheville over the past five years has demonstrated the need for the university to participate in the community. Faculty, staff, and students connect with city leadership to help address the issues a growing city often experiences. With successful Division I athletics, the university establishes stronger ties to the region. Community service is critical at UNC Asheville, and it will continue to be a focal point for Dr. Grant.

This mission-driven approach, anchored in the liberal arts, receives accolades from students, faculty, and college guides. The university was ranked #1 for “Making an Impact,” by The Princeton Review in 2016, recognizing schools with the best community service opportunities, student governments, sustainability, and on-campus student engagement, as well as graduates with high job meaning. UNC Asheville continues to earn high marks for value and academic excellence, garnering a Top 10 place on the Best Public Liberal Arts Colleges by U.S. News and World Report.

Dr. Grant is a leader in public higher education, having served as chair of the Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges (COPLAC), where she directed a planning effort that culminated in bringing the COPLAC executive office to Asheville. She currently serves as president of the Big South Conference Council of Chief Executive Officers, as vice chair of the board for National Campus Compact, as a director of the Asheville Chamber of Commerce and United Way of Asheville, and a trustee of the Norman Rockwell Museum.

She served as the chief academic officer and deputy CEO of UMassOnline and was a senior fellow at the John W. McCormack Institute of Public Affairs at UMass Boston, where she led the institute’s master’s program in public affairs and served as director of the Center for Social Policy. In addition, Dr. Grant served as assistant vice chancellor for administration and finance and human resources at UMass Boston. As president of MCLA, she oversaw growth in enrollment, strengthened the connections between the college and the community, and led the college’s first comprehensive capital campaign, resulting in approximately $100 million in new public and private support for the college.

Dr. Grant has received numerous awards and recognitions, including the 2014 MCLA Distinguished Alumnus Award, and the New England Board of Higher Education’s (NEBHE) Massachusetts State Merit Award. She also received the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) District I Executive Leadership Award in recognition of her success in increasing MCLA's institutional stature in, and service to, the community. Dr. Grant was the recipient of the 2011 American Council on Education Massachusetts National Network of Women Leaders Lifetime Achievement Award, and was appointed to the Massachusetts Governor’s Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Advisory Council. She holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology from MCLA, a master’s degree in public affairs from UMass Boston, a Ph.D. in social policy from The Heller School at Brandeis University, and an honorary degree from Williams College.

Imari K. Paris Jeffries, member, UMass Board of Trustees; executive director, Parenting Journey; UMass Boston alumnus

Mr. JeffriesImari Paris Jeffries joined the Parenting Journey team in February 2017. He brings a wealth of experience from the nonprofit management, community activism, education reform, and social justice sectors to his role as Executive Director. Previously, he was Chief Executive Officer of Italian Home, a behavioral health organization in Boston. He also served as COO of Jumpstart, a national early education organization and interim CEO of Boston Rising, an anti-poverty initiative. Imari has a strong commitment to giving back and serves as a Trustee of The University of Massachusetts System and was recently appointed by Governor Baker to the Black Advisory Commission.

A member of the Appalachian Mountain Club Board of Directors, Imari has previously served on the boards of the African American Federation of Greater Boston; Save the Harbor, Save the Bay; Massachusetts Mentoring Partnership; The Edward Brooke Charter School; Third Sector New England; and the Elizabeth Peabody House. Imari is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts with a Bachelor of Arts, Masters of Education, and Masters of Arts. He is currently pursuing his PhD through the Higher Education Administration Program. He enjoys the outdoors with his family and you can often find him in the Blue Hills Reservation or the Arnold Arboretum.

Dr. Robert E. Johnson, chancellor, UMass Dartmouth

Dr. Robert E. JohnsonDr. Robert E. Johnson was appointed chancellor of the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth on March 7, 2017. He began his leadership of the university on July 1, 2017. In announcing Dr. Johnson’s appointment, University of Massachusetts President Marty Meehan described him as an “accomplished, visionary leader with an entrepreneurial spirit and a proven commitment to student success.”

Dr. Johnson, who previously served seven years as president of Becker College in Worcester, Massachusetts, has dedicated a quarter century of his life to building higher education opportunity for people. A frequent presenter and commentator on issues related to the future of work, Dr. Johnson believes college graduates must be professionally and intellectually agile to compete in a world where career mobility is the norm and individuals must continuously build their personal value. He stresses that the three pillars of global citizenship—academic excellence, social responsibility, and creative expression – are prerequisites for success in a complex and hyper-connected world.

Dr. Johnson has served as a member of the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education, vice chair of the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative and chair of the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce prior. At Becker College, Dr. Johnson led the evolution of the college into an adaptive, nimble, and entrepreneurial institution that is a model for colleges and universities across the United States. Prior to becoming Becker College’s president, Dr. Johnson served as senior vice president of Sinclair Community College, vice president of enrollment management at the University of Dayton, vice provost at Oakland University and executive director of enrollment management at Central State University.

A native of Detroit, Michigan, Dr. Johnson holds a PhD in higher education administration from Touro University International, a master’s degree in education administration from the University of Cincinnati and a bachelor’s degree in economics from Morehouse College.

UMass Dartmouth is a Tier 1 national research university located on 710 acres of the scenic SouthCoast of Massachusetts. With nearly 9,000 students in undergraduate, master’s and doctoral programs, and a 400-member faculty that annually produces $27 million in research activity. The university is the only Massachusetts research university located south of Boston and generates nearly $500 million of economic activity in the region. UMass Dartmouth is home to the Commonwealth’s only public law school and is recognized as a national Top 20 university for civic engagement, annually contributing more than 240,000 hours of community service valued at more than $6 million. The university has 48,000 alumni, three quarters living in Massachusetts and half living in southeastern Massachusetts and on Cape Cod.

Robert Lewis Jr., founder and president, The Base

Robert Lewis, Jr.Robert Lewis, Jr. is a nationally recognized thought leader, public speaker and passionate advocate for urban youth. Known as a bridge-builder and catalyst for collaboration between diverse business, civic and public sectors, Robert has deep experience with grassroots, community-based organizations throughout Greater Boston and government entities, colleges, sports franchises and philanthropic foundations throughout the country. A 2015 Boston Magazine cover story listed Robert among the city’s 50 Most Powerful Leaders, calling him “a tireless advocate for inner-city kids.”

Robert’s impressive career trajectory has included important roles such as Executive Director of the Boston Centers for Youth and Families, President and Executive Director of the National Conference for Community and Justice (NCCJ), Senior Vice President of City Year’s national operations and Executive Director of City Year Boston, and Vice President for Program at the Boston Foundation where he directed the distribution of $16 million+ in discretionary grants.

He was the chief architect of two important initiatives during his tenure at the Boston Foundation: StreetSafe Boston – the country’s only privately-funded ($15m) gang program with a mission to dramatically reduce gun violence in the city; and CHAMPS Boston – which promotes positive youth development through sports by training over 5,000 youth sports coaches in Greater Boston.

In 2013, Robert left his high profile position at The Boston Foundation to pursue a lifelong dream to launch The BASE. The BASE is a model and methodology that changes the paradigm for urban youth by providing student athletes with the opportunity, knowledge, skills and confidence needed to develop a winning game plan for success both on and off the field. The BASE embodies everything Robert learned as founder of the Boston Astros, a youth baseball team he launched in 1978. Legendary baseball writer Peter Gammons has called The Astros, “Hands-down the best urban baseball program in the country,” and Triple Crown Sports awarded the Astros the 2012 “Team of the Year” award from a field of 40,000.

Robert is a highly sought-after public speaker, facilitator and spokesperson on the topic of urban issues and opportunities, addressing attendees at major national conferences and inspiring students and faculty on college campuses across the country. He has worked collaboratively with government and civic leaders in Los Angeles, New Orleans, Chicago, New York, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, and currently consults with a number of foundations and non-profits including California Wellness Foundation, Delaware Valley Grantmakers, and the Stoneleigh Foundation, offering leadership, critical and strategic thinking on urban youth development. Robert also worked with the Minister of Defense in Bermuda to launch StreetStafe Bermuda, and advised Prime Minister David Cameron during the tumultuous riots in the United Kingdom in 2011.

Among his many awards and distinctions are the 2015 Sports Museum’s Lifetime Achievement Award at the Boston Baseball Writer’s Annual Dinner, and an honorary doctor of humane letters degree from Cambridge (MA) College. In addition, Robert served on MA Governor-elect Charlie Baker’s transition team, helping develop Baker’s statewide urban agenda.
Robert has been profiled in 4 books: Developing Better Athletes, Better People, A Leader’s Guide To Transforming High School and Youth Sports into a Development Zone, authored by Jim Thompson, Do More Than Give, the 6 Practices of Donors Who Change the World, by Leslie Crutchfield, John Kania and Mark Kramer, 10 Who Mentor, by Denise Korn, Men Who Dare, authored by the late Katherine Martin.

Gray Milkowski, student trustee, UMass Boston

Mr. MilkowskiGray Milkowski is a member of the UMass Boston College of Liberal Arts currently pursuing a double major in Political Science and International Relations. He was elected to be the Student Trustee at the University of Massachusetts Boston for the 2017 academic year. He has served on the Board for three months and sits on the Committee for Administration and Finance, Academic and Student Affairs, and Advancement.

Originally from Shirley, Massachusetts, Gray graduated from Sizer Charter School in Fitchburg in 2015 and in his senior year completed a full academic course load at Fitchburg State University. Now at UMass Boston, he is a member of the University Honors College and has traveled abroad to study politics of the European Union at Goethe University in Frankfurt.

Gray spent two years as a member of the Undergraduate Student Government at UMass Boston. During that time, he worked with student clubs and organizations and in his second year chaired the Events and Organizations Committee, responsible for overseeing a budget of approximately $175,000 and its allocation to student organizations across campus.

Gray is a resident of Dorchester, and spent his summer interning in the Massachusetts State Legislature for State Senator James B. Eldridge. He currently works at UMass Boston Student Activities as well as Pastoral Kitchen and Bar in Fort Point.

Dr. Manickam Sugumaran, professor of biology; chair, faculty council, UMass Boston

Mr. SugumaranManickam Sugumaran, Ph.D., is Professor of Biology - Protein Chemistry and Enzymology at the University of Massachusetts Boston, and is President of the Faculty Council.

Insects have great impact on agriculture, food industry and health. Manickam Sugumaran's laboratory is interested in studying three vital processes (cuticular sclerotization, insect immunity and wound healing) that are essential for the successful survival of insects. By elucidating the molecular mechanisms underlying these processes, one can develop new and novel insecticides that are environmentally safe. Hardening of the cuticle protects the insects from their environmental enemies and from dehydration. Arrest or even delay of this process has devastating consequences for insect viability. The lab has unraveled the molecular mechanisms of sclerotization that are partly responsible for the hardening of insects cuticle and discovered two new enzymes viz., quinone isomerase and quinone methide isomerase associated with this process. Currently he and his team are studying the molecular aspects of these and other enzymes such as phenoloxidases to develop new insecticides for future use. They are also examining the molecular mechanisms of melanogenesis and discovered new quinone methide intermediate in this process. This finding can lead to the development of new drugs for treatment of malignant melanoma and other melanin related disorders. Apart from insect control measures, Sugumaran is also interested in developing biological glues, natural hair coloring agents, skin color lightening agents, and prevention of oxidative browning of food products.

Dr. Marcellette Williams, senior vice president for academic affairs, student affairs and international relations, UMass

Marcellette Gay WilliamsMarcellette Gay Williams Since 2005, Marcellette G. Williams, Ph.D. has been Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, Student Affairs and International Relations at The University of Massachusetts. Prior to that time she had served for 10 years on the Amherst campus as Professor of English and Comparative Literature, Deputy Chancellor, and interim Chancellor.

A Phi Beta Kappa, summa cum laude graduate in Comparative Literature, an M.A. in English and Comparative Literature, and a Ph.D. in English from Michigan State University, she had served in several executive management line and other administrative positions prior to accepting an appointment at the University of Massachusetts Amherst in January 1994, including serving as Executive Associate to the President and Corporate Secretary of the Board of Trustees at an AAU land-grant university. In addition to her teaching and scholarship, for almost a decade she taught and consulted throughout Asia and in Europe through Michigan State University’s Graduate Studies in Education Overseas program.

With Salzburg Seminar, Inc., she has served as faculty in the International Universities Project, site visitor at a Romanian university, a central Siberian university, and at a Slovak Republic university; she has undertaken initiatives in South Africa with several tertiary educational institutions, while also serving on the board of the Amy Biehl Foundation Trust in Cape Town.

From 1981 to present, her profession-related international travel has taken her to Hong Kong; the Soviet Union; the People's Republic of China; the Russian Federation; Sweden; Norway; Finland; Denmark; Germany; the Netherlands; Japan; Indonesia; Malaysia; Italy; (then)Yugoslavia; Romania; the Slovak Republik; Greece; Spain; Austria; Brazil; the Philippines; Taiwan; France; Korea; Saudi Arabia, Vietnam; Cambodia; Kenya; South Africa; Australia; New Zealand; Canada; and the United Kingdom.

She was a Fellow of the American Council on Education and has engaged in service and outreach in the university, state, national, and international arenas. In 2012, she delivered the 125th invited Global Vision Lecture at China’s Tsinghua University.

Her ongoing research focuses on the language of leadership--its metaphors and other dimensions of rhetoric and its capacity to persuade, motivate, and renew.