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UW-Madison Chancellor leaving for Northwestern

Rebecca Blank had led UW-Madison since 2013.
University of Wisconsin-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank
University of Wisconsin-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank(UW-Madison)
Published: Oct. 11, 2021 at 9:25 AM CDT|Updated: Oct. 11, 2021 at 1:44 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - University of Wisconsin-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank will be leaving the university at the end of the year. However, she is not departing the Big Ten.

On Monday, Northwestern University’s Board of Trustees announced Blank will be the university’s next president, starting over the summer. In a statement released by Northwestern, Blank said she was “honored and delighted” to take over at the Evanston, Ill., university.

“Northwestern is a school that I have known and admired for years. Its reputation as a top-rated educational and research institution has grown each decade,” Blank wrote. “It will be my mission to make sure the institution’s reputation and quality continues to accelerate.”

Blank has served as the chancellor of UW’s flagship university since July 2013, a tenure that is the longest since Irving Shain held the position for a decade, retiring in 1986. In its statement, released approximately the same time as NU’s release, UW described her time at the university as focused on the student experience and elevating its stature as world-class university, while securing its financial footing.

“It was always my goal to leave this university stronger than when I came and I believe that together we have achieved that,” she adds. “I want to thank the many staff and faculty who have been partners and collaborators in everything we’ve done.”

Blank is an internationally known economist who served as deputy secretary and acting commerce secretary during the Obama administration.

Coming to Northwestern is a homecoming of sorts for Blank, who was married in Chicago, has served on the faculty at the school in Evanston, Illinois, and has a daughter who attended the school.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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