COLUMBIA — Timothy M. Wolfe was named the 23rd president of the UM System on Tuesday morning.
Wolfe, 53, is an MU school of business and Rock Bridge High School graduate and spent 20 years as an executive at IBM. He leaves a position as president of Novell Americas, a software company in Waltham, Mass.
"Today is a very, very special homecoming for me," Wolfe said.
He will take office in mid-February.
The UM System announced his appointment by email a few minutes before board Chairman Warren Erdman introduced him at the news conference.
The announcement concludes a yearlong presidential search that began in January when Gary Forsee stepped down to care for his ill wife.
On Friday, Erdman announced that the presidential search committee, which is made up of the nine curators, had finished its deliberations and chosen a finalist.
Erdman said the search came down to four interviews with candidates, second interviews and telephone followups before the search committee focused on a single finalist. The final candidate was present and was interviewed Dec. 6 at a presidential search advisory committee meeting at Mizzou Arena.
The board has been careful not to disclose any of the candidates' identities throughout the search process. During the last presidential search, two candidates' names went public — then-U.S. Rep. Kenny Hulshof and then New Jersey businessman Terry Sutter — before the search settled on Forsee.
Coincidentally, former UM System president C. Peter Magrath retired from his position Monday as president of Binghamton University, in Vestal, N.Y. He served as system president from 1985 to 1991.
The new president will visit Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla on Tuesday afternoon for a brief program and reception and will make similar visits to the system's campuses in Kansas City and St. Louis on Wednesday.