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Journal Tribune
Posted
Updated November 8, 2019
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Former Connecticut governor chosen to lead University of Maine system

Dannel Malloy, the former Democratic governor of Connecticut from 2010 to 2018, was named chancellor of the University of Maine system in a unanimous vote by the board of trustees Thursday morning.

Malloy, 63, is scheduled to start the job July 1 and will replace Chancellor James Page, who is retiring nearly seven years after taking over leadership of the university system.

Malloy’s contract is for three years and he will receive an annual salary of $350,000. Page’s salary throughout his tenure was $277,500.

“Dan Malloy is an executive leader and public servant committed to taking on complex change initiatives and getting the job done,” said James Erwin, chair of the board of trustees, in a news release. “As governor he delivered reforms and structural changes to state government that were not always popular, and certainly not expedient, but that advanced the long term interest of his state and its citizens.”

As governor of Connecticut, Malloy’s administration achieved a 13 percent reduction in the size of the state government workforce, secured agreements with the state bargaining unit resulting in $40 billion in savings to taxpayers, replenished the state rainy day fund to more than $2 billion, and fully funded the state pension payment every year, the release said.

In education, Malloy’s accomplishments as governor include the creation of a board of regents for higher education in Connecticut; student-focused advancements like the simplification of the credit transfer process and launch of a “Guided Path” initiative to help students efficiently earn credits, transfer and attain jobs; and expansion efforts at the University of Connecticut including the investment of more than $2.3 billion in the state’s flagship institution to support the development of the bioscience industry and increase enrollment in science and engineering fields.

In an interview Thursday shortly after the trustees’ announcement, Malloy said education has always been a part of his career and as chancellor he hopes to build on the work of the trustees and Page, who was able to freeze tuition for six years while also working to stabilize the system budget.

“I think the board and Chancellor Page have done a tremendous job in designing a path forward that will allow Maine to continue to be an affordable system while delivering the highest returns,” Malloy said.

As Maine faces the challenge of an aging workforce, he said the system will play a key role in trying to fill 158,000 skilled jobs that will come open in the next 10 years.

“We need to invite as many people as possible to the state of Maine to be educated here because the chances of keeping them here go up if they’re educated here,” Page said. “They meet someone. They fall in love. They have their first job.”

Born and raised in Stamford, Connecticut, Malloy earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and sociology from Boston College and a law degree from Boston College. In the early 1980s he worked as an assistant district attorney in New York City before moving into general practice law in Connecticut, according to his resume.

He’s also taught as an adjunct professor at the University of Connecticut and more recently was a visiting professor at Boston College Law School.

Prior to being elected governor in 2010, Malloy was the mayor of Stamford from 1995 to 2009.

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