WMU News

Kellogg Foundation chief closes Centennial Scholars Series

Jan. 17, 2004

KALAMAZOO--The head of one of the nation's foremost philanthropic foundations will conclude the Western Michigan University Centennial Scholars and Artist Series, a special lineup of lectures, performances and presentations celebrating the University's 100th anniversary.

Dr. William C. Richardson, president and chief executive officer of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation of Battle Creek, Mich., will speak at 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 22, at the Fetzer Center on the WMU campus. His presentation is free and open to the public. He is expected to discuss issues pertaining to health and human services and community building.

Richardson oversees one of the largest philanthropic foundations in the world. The foundation was established in 1930 "to help people help themselves through the practical application of knowledge and resources to improve their quality of life and that of future generations." Before joining the foundation in 1995, Richardson was president of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, a position he had held since 1990. In addition, he was professor of health policy and management at the university and has been designated professor and president emeritus by Johns Hopkins.

Previously, Richardson was executive vice president and provost of Pennsylvania State University from 1984 to 1990 and also served as dean of the graduate school and vice provost for research of the University of Washington in Seattle from 1981 to 1984.

Richardson has been active with numerous foundations, non-profit institutions and the corporate and public sectors. He is a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences and is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Public Health Association. He serves on the boards of the Council of Michigan Foundations and the Council on Foundations, which he led as chairperson from 2000 to 2002. He also serves on the boards of directors of the Kellogg Co., CSX Corp. and the Bank of New York. In addition, he served as chairman of the Committee on Quality of Health Care in America for the Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences.

Born in Passaic, N.J., Richardson graduated from Trinity College with a bachelor's degree in history. He went on to earn a master's degree in business administration from the University of Chicago, Center for Health Administration Studies, Graduate School of Business in 1964 and a doctoral degree from the University of Chicago, Graduate School of Business, in 1971.

The WMU Centennial Scholars & Artists events began in the fall and were planned for WMU alumni, faculty, staff, students and the Kalamazoo-area community. Richardson's presentation also is part of the William Burian Lecture Series. Sponsored by Western Michigan University's College of Health and Human Services, the series is named in memory of Burian, founding dean of the college, who died in 1988 after a brief illness.

Media contact: Mark Schwerin, 269 387-8400, mark.schwerin@wmich.edu

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