PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — At its regular Commencement/Reunion Weekend meeting Friday, May 25, 2012, the Corporation of Brown University elected a new member of its Board of Fellows and three new members of its Board of Trustees. The Corporation also formally accepted more than $17 million in new gifts to the University and appointed 14 faculty to named professorships.
The trustees and fellows also honored President Ruth J. Simmons as she concludes her 11 years of service as Brown’s 18th president. The Corporation formally appointed her president emerita, effective July 1, 2012, and renamed the historic lower campus — Lincoln Field — as the Ruth J. Simmons Quadrangle. (See news release)
The Corporation, governing body of Brown University, comprises a 12-member Board of Fellows and a 42-member Board of Trustees. It is responsible for establishing broad policies for the operation of the University, for selecting a president to carry out those policies, for approving senior administrative officers and tenure-track faculty members, and for approving annual operating funds and capital projects for the University.
Election of a fellow
Theresia Gouw Ranzetta, a 1990 Brown graduate, was elected to the Board of Trustees in 2007. She is managing partner at Accel Partners, a leading venture capital firm focused primarily on technology companies. She joined the firm in 1999 and was named partner in 2000. Ranzetta focuses primarily on Internet, mobile, and software investments. She currently serves on the board of directors of Imperva (IMPV) as well as several private companies including Glam Media, Trulia, LearnVest, ModCloth, and BirchBox.
Prior to joining Accel Partners, Ranzetta was founding vice president of business development and sales at Release Software. She had worked previously as a management consultant at Bain & Company and as a product manager at Silicon Graphics.
Ranzetta serves on the board of DonorsChoose.org, on the Stanford GSB Trust, and as a member of Stanford’s BAVCG Investment Fund. She earned an Sc.B. in engineering, magna cum laude, from Brown University and an M.B.A. from Stanford University. At Brown, Ranzetta served as a vice chair of Boldly Brown: The Campaign for Academic Enrichment, co-chaired her 20th reunion gift committee, is a member of the Advisory Council on Computing and Information Technology, and is a volunteer with Alumni Career Connections. Ranzetta will serve an 11-year term as fellow through June 30, 2023.
Election of trustees
Craig Evan Barton, a 1977 Brown graduate, earned a Master of Architecture degree from the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation at Columbia University in 1985, and was a Loeb Fellow at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design in 1994. An architect, urbanist, and educator, Barton is professor of architecture and urban design and director of The Design School at the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts at Arizona State University. He is a founding principal of the RB Design Studio, in Charlottesville, Va. The firm has developed award-winning preservation, adaptive re-use, and urban design projects in the South and Northeast. Barton is the editor of the anthology, Sites of Memory: Perspectives on Architecture and Race and has contributed to a range of anthologies including the City of Memory, Row: Trajectories Through the Shotgun House and the recently published Writing Urbanism. Barton serves on the board of the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture and the Jefferson School Community Partnership. He is a member of the Corporation’s Facilities and Design Committee and the Brown Alumni Schools Committee. He will serve as a Brown trustee through June 30, 2018.
Alison Cohen, a 2009 Brown graduate, will serve a three-year term through June 30, 2015, as the Corporation’s third young alumna trustee. Cohen concentrated in community health and education studies at Brown. She participated in and evaluated University-community partnerships for public health, education, and the environment, including the Swearer Center for Public Service, the Brown Superfund Research Program’s Community Outreach Core, community-based learning courses in community health and environmental studies, and as a member of the Brown University Community Council. While at Brown, Cohen received several awards and prizes, including the Jin Prize, a Joslin Award, a Royce Fellowship, the Harold Ward Undergraduate Teaching and Research Award, and the Pembroke Center’s Barbara Anton Internship Grant. After graduating Phi Beta Kappa, Cohen studied European Union policy implementation on a Fulbright scholarship and received a Masters in Public Health in epidemiology and biostatistics from the University of California–Berkeley. She also oversees research and evaluation for Generation Citizen, a civic education organization founded by Brown alumni. Cohen is a doctoral student in epidemiology at Berkeley.
William H. Twaddell, a 1963 Brown graduate, was first elected to the Board of Trustees in 2005. He served for more than 30 years in the diplomatic corps following successive two-year stints in the Peace Corps (Brazil), U.S. Army, and press corps (New York Daily News). He spent most of his Foreign Service career involved in African affairs, where, for his last 20 years, he was chief of mission in six countries, including conflicted Mozambique, Mauritania, and Liberia. Since retirement in 2000, Twaddell has involved himself in community and international affairs. He is a Board member and chair of the John Carter Brown Library Associates. In 2002 he was the recipient of Brown’s William Rogers Award. Twaddell will serve a one-year term through June 30, 2013.
Faculty appointed to named chairs
Except as noted, the following appointments are effective July 1, 2012, at the start of the next academic year:
- Amanda Anderson, the Andrew W. Mellon Professor of Humanities and English;
- Gilad Barnea, the Robert and Nancy Carney Assistant Professor of Neuroscience;
- Wesley Bernskoetter, the Manning Assistant Professor of Chemistry;
- Allan Bower, the Royce Family Professor of Teaching Excellence and Professor of Engineering;
- Laurent Brossay, the Charles A. and Helen B. Stuart Associate Professor of Medical Science;
- Beshara Doumani, the Joukowsky Family Professor of Modern Middle East History;
- Peter van Dommelen, the Joukowsky Family Professor of Archaeology and Professor of Anthropology;
- Paul Dupuis, the IBM Professor of Applied Mathematics;
- Philip Gould, the Nicholas Brown Professor of Oratory and Belles Lettres;
- Paul Guyer, the Jonathan Nelson Professor of Philosophy;
- Johanna Hanink, the Robert Gale Noyes Assistant Professor of Humanities;
- Thangam Ravindranathan, the Manning Assistant Professor of French Studies;
- David Weil, the James and Merryl Tisch Professor of Economics;
- Gregory Schopen, the Rush C. Hawkins University Professor of Religious Studies (effective Jan. 1, 2013).
Acceptance of gifts and establishment of endowed positions
By University policy, all gifts of $1 million or more require formal acceptance by the Corporation. At its Friday business meeting, the Corporation accepted or ratified previous acceptance of a number of gifts totaling more than $17 million. It also established an endowed professorship. The Corporation created or accepted:
- With support from Chancellor Emeritus Artemis A. W. Joukowsky, Class of 1955, and Professor Emeritus Martha Sharp Joukowsky, Class of 1958, both Brown parents, the Joukowsky Family Professorship in Archaeology III, effective immediately;
- From anonymous donors, a gift of $5 million, $3 million of which is to establish a professorship in brain science, $1 million for a scientific innovation fund, and $1 million pending donor designation;
- From anonymous donors, a gift of $3 million for the athletic turf field projects;
- From anonymous donors, a gift of $3 million for the Brown-India Research Initiative;
- From anonymous donors, a gift of $1.5 million to establish a College Hill Visiting Professorship;
- From anonymous donors, a gift of $1.5 million pending designation;
- From the estate of E. Warren Fisher, Class of 1938, an unrestricted bequest in the amount of $1,040,479;
- From anonymous donors, a gift of $1 million pending designation;
- From anonymous donors, a gift of $1 million for an international scholarship.