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Governor's Commission on Higher Education

Old Dominion University President John R. Broderick was appointed by Gov. Bob McDonnell to the Governor's Commission on Higher Education Reform, Innovation and Investment.

"This Commission will play a pivotal role in the effort to make Virginia a more-highly educated state where businesses seek to locate and good jobs are available to our citizens in the communities they call home," McDonnell noted in the May 28 announcement. "We must make higher education more affordable and accessible for Virginians, and expand pathways to earning a college degree.

"Our institutions of higher learning are known worldwide for their innovation, research and quality. Here in Virginia they are job-creators and economic drivers. We must ensure they continue to operate at the highest levels, while remaining accessible to Virginia students."

In addition to Broderick, the commission includes the presidents of seven other Virginia colleges and universities, as well as a number of business, education policy and government officials.

"I am honored to be chosen by Gov. McDonnell for this important initiative, and pledge to work tirelessly with my colleagues to ensure the goals of the commission are met and Virginia's outstanding higher education institutions have a sustainable road map for their - and the Commonwealth's - future success," Broderick said.

Created by Executive Order Number Nine, the commission will focus on:

  1. Identifying ways to prevent significant and unexpected tuition increases to ensure affordability and provide cost predictability for students and their parents
  2. Increasing significantly the percentage of college-age Virginians enrolling in institutions of higher education and attaining degrees.
  3. Attracting and preparing young people for the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) areas and other disciplines (e.g., healthcare and advanced manufacturing) where skill shortages now exist and/or unmet demand is anticipated
  4. Forging effective public-private partnerships and regional strategies for business recruitment, workforce preparation, and university-based research
  5. Making Virginia a national leader in providing higher education opportunities to military personnel and veterans
  6. Crafting a sustainable higher education funding model that will systematically move Virginia toward higher levels of educational attainment and economic competitiveness over the next decade-and-a-half
  7. Developing innovative ways to deliver quality instruction, cost-saving reform strategies, and affordable new pathways to degree attainment for capable Virginians regardless of income or background
  8. Ensuring state supported universities focus financial resources on the core mission of educating students and preparing them for careers in the 21st Century economy

The commission is scheduled to have its first meeting in early July, and will submit a final report with recommendations by Nov. 30, 2010.

The full commission membership includes:


Tom Farrell, Chairman, President and CEO, Dominion Resources, Inc. Former Rector of the University of Virginia


  • William Barr, Former U.S. Attorney General
  • Dr. Bill Bosher, Executive Director, Commonwealth Policy Institute and Distinguished Professor of Public Policy and Education, Virginia Commonwealth University
  • John Broderick, President, Old Dominion University
  • Delegate Kirk Cox, Colonial Heights
  • Delegate Rosalyn Dance, Petersburg
  • JoAnn DiGenarro, President, Center for Excellence in Education
  • Mark Dreyfus, President and CEO, ECPI Colleges
  • Jerry Falwell, Jr., Chancellor, Liberty University
  • Heywood Fralin, CEO of Medical Facilities of America, Inc.
  • Dr. Rachel Fowlkes, Executive Director, Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center
  • Dr. William Harvey, President, Hampton University
  • Dr. Bob Holsworth, Founder and President, Virginia Tomorrow
  • Senator Edd Houck, Spotsylvania
  • Dr. Robert Lindgren, President, Randolph-Macon College
  • Delegate Scott Lingamfelter, Prince William
  • Thomas Loehr, Executive Vice President - Crosspointe Operations, Rolls Royce
  • Dr. Mirta Martin, Interim Dean, School of Business and Professor of Management, Virginia State University
  • G. Gilmer Minor, Chairman, Owens and Minor, Inc.
  • Dr. Pamela Moran, Superintendent, Albemarle County Public Schools
  • Raj Narasimhan, Site Director, Micron Technology Virginia
  • Paul Nardo, Chief of Staff, Speaker William J. Howell
  • Senator Steve Newman, Lynchburg
  • Leslie Peterson, Director of Operations, Chmura Economics and Analytics
  • Dr. B. Carlyle Ramsey, President, Danville Community College
  • Dr. Linwood Rose, President, James Madison University
  • Delegate Tom Rust, Herndon
  • Dr. Charles Steger, President, Virginia Tech
  • Senator Walter Stosch, Glen Allen
  • Todd Stottlemyer, Executive Vice-President, Inova Health System
  • Robin Sullenberger, CEO, Shenandoah Valley Partnership
  • Paul Trible, Jr., President, Christopher Newport University
  • Senator William Wampler, Bristol
  • Charlie Whitaker, Senior VP of Human Resources and Compliance, Altria Client Services, Inc

Other members include the Secretaries of Education, Technology, and Finance or designate, and the Vice-Chairman of the Council on Virginia's Future. The Lieutenant Governor, Secretary of Commerce and Trade, and Senior Economic Advisor shall serve as ex officio members

The full text of the Governor's Executive Order #9 is available at:

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