Barbara J. Wilson Is the New Leader of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

The board of trustees of the University of Illinois has named Barbara J. Wilson as acting chancellor of the flagship campus at Urbana-Champaign. Dr. Wilson is dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at the university and will continue to perform the duties of that position.

Dr. Wilson is taking over for Chancellor Phyllis W. Wise who resigned a week ago. Initially, the board rejected Dr. Wise’s resignation and reassigned her temporarily while it took the first steps to fire her. At issue was a $400,000 severance payment. But then the board decided to accept Dr. Wise’s resignation as chancellor. She will take a sabbatical and return to a tenured faculty post in molecular and cellular biology.

Dr. Wilson was named dean in 2014. Previously, she was executive vice provost for faculty and academic affairs. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a master’s degree and Ph.D. in communication, all from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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