August 08, 2001 11:00 pm
Bruce Shepard ().
Bruce Shepard ().

By Dick Mason

Observer Staff Writer

Eastern Oregon University provost Bruce Shepard is an avid sailor, one who enjoys cruising the waters of the Columbia River, Wallowa Lake and Phillips Reservoir.

Soon Shepard will test his sailing skills on the waters of Lake Michigan.

Shepard was named chancellor of the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay on Wednesday. Shepard, who has been at Eastern for six years, will assume his new position Nov. 1.

A chancellor at a state university in Wisconsin is the equivalent of a university president in Oregon. The University of Wisconsin- Green Bay, which has 5,500 students, is next to Lake Michigan. It is one of 11 universities in the statewide University of Wisconsin system.

Shepard is taking the position because he sees the school as having many of the same strengths as Eastern.

It has strong undergraduate instruction and strong support from the community, Shepard said

The Eastern administrator said it will be difficult for his wife, Cyndie, and him to move from La Grande.

It will be tough to leave because of all the wonderful people weve met here, Shepard said.

He noted, though, that instead of leaving friends here, we like to think that we are taking friendships with us.

Shepard was asked to apply for the position by the University of Wisconsin. He said this speaks well of EOUs reputation.

It was clear to me that Easterns national reputation is one reason why I was a strong candidate, Shepard said.

Eastern President Phil Creighton said that Shepards selection is a salute to the

La Grande school.

The mark of a good university is that other institutions seek after its individuals, and Bruce is a great example, Creighton said. Through his leadership, we have experienced historically high retention rates, enrollment increases that led the Oregon University System the past two years, and a ranking in U.S. News & World Report as Oregons only public top tier university. (Shepards) leadership, professionalism and passion for learning will be missed.

Prior to joining Eastern, Shepard spent 23 years at Oregon State University, where he was a political science professor and later an administrator.

At Eastern, Shepard has worked under two presidents, David Gilbert and Creighton. He said he has learned much from both.

Shepard said Gilbert taught him the importance of reaching out and serving the region, how to work strategically and politically with state leaders and the importance of collaboration and having many partners.

Shepard said Creighton taught him how to reach out and enjoy a large group of people, develop a diverse network of friends at other colleges and universities, and aspire to an enabling leadership style that allows people

to perform to their highest


At the Green Bay campus, Shepard will succeed Mark Perkins, who resigned to become president of Towson State University in Maryland July 1. The university will have an interim chancellor until November.

Shepard was selected by a University of Wisconsin Board of Regents search committee and University of Wisconsin System President Katharine Lyall.

Regent and search committee member Fred Mohs of Madison, Wis., told the Green Bay Press-Gazette that Shepards skills and experience are a good fit for the university.

I predict the Green Bay community will really latch on to this guy. Hell be looked upon as a real asset. Id love to have him in my community, Mohs said.