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UW-Madison announces new secretary of the academic staff

June 22, 2009

The longtime assistant director of the Office of Professional and Instructional Development for the University of Wisconsin System has been named the next secretary of the academic staff at UW–Madison, interim Provost Julie Underwood announced today (June 22).

Donna Silver will begin her new position in mid-July. She succeeds Colleen McCabe, who will retire July 1.

“Colleen has served the university in a variety of roles for many years,” says Underwood. “Her dedication and service — particularly as secretary of the academic staff — have been significant, and we’re deeply grateful to her.”

Silver has been assistant director of the UW System’s Office of Professional and Instructional Development since 1987. In that role, she has coordinated the Wisconsin Teaching Fellows and Scholars Program and the Faculty College; planned conferences and Staff Council meetings; and organized multiple grant programs. She also administers the UW System Alliant Energy Underkofler Excellence in Teaching Award and is co-coordinator for the System Advisory Group on the Liberal Arts. She has been elected by her peers to serve four consecutive terms on the UW System Administration Academic Staff Committee.

Silver earned her bachelor’s degree in art history from Beloit College, and a master of arts in library science and a master of science in continuing and adult education, both from UW–Madison.

As secretary of the academic staff, Silver will facilitate the work of the Academic Staff Executive Committee (ASEC), Standing Committees and the Academic Staff Assembly. She’ll be a resource for academic staff members, act as a liaison between ASEC and university administration, and assist on any other matters related to shared governance.

“Donna impressed us as a truly collaborative leader who brings a great deal of energy and creativity to setting an agenda and solving problems, and a master multitasker whose organizational abilities will keep the committees on track,” says Carla Love, a distinguished lecturer who chaired the search committee. “We especially appreciated her initiative in promoting participation in academic staff governance at UW System and her enthusiasm for working together with ASEC to strengthen the role of academic staff as a vital partner in shared governance at UW–Madison.”