KNOXVILLE—Jimmy G. Cheek, chancellor of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, is now on the board of directors of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU), the nation’s oldest, and one of its leading, higher education associations.
He also has been appointed chairman of APLU’s Commission on Food, Environment and Renewable Resources and a member of its Energy Forum. Both of these groups gather and communicate information about key research on campuses, monitor relevant legislation, promote university interests before Congress, and identify ways universities can help solve national problems.
Cheek’s election and appointment were made official at APLU’s recent annual meeting; he will serve through November 2013.
“With more than thirty-five years in the classroom, laboratory, and administration, Jimmy Cheek brings a keen eye for detail and significant experience dealing with big issues to the APLU board,” said APLU President M. Peter McPherson.
A research and advocacy organization, APLU communicates with the general public and federal policy makers on issues of importance to public research universities, land-grant universities, state universities, state university systems, and related organizations. The organization has 217 members across all fifty states, and its member institutions enroll more than 3.5 million undergraduate students and 1.1 million graduate students.
Cheek said holding leadership positions within APLU heightens UT’s visibility in the national arena.
“It gives me the opportunity to interact with some of the key players in higher education around the country,” he said. “APLU is significant force in higher education and, as part of it, I will have the chance to advocate for higher education policy on the national level at a very critical time in our history.”
Cheek’s fellow APLU directors include presidents, vice presidents, chancellors, vice chancellors, provosts, and other high-ranking officials from institutions across the country, including UCLA, the University of Texas, and the universities of Georgia, Alabama (Birmingham), and Florida.
Cheek has been UT’s chancellor since February 1, 2009. Prior to that, he was a member of the faculty and an administrator at the University of Florida for thirty-four years, last serving as senior vice president of agricultural and natural resources.
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