When MU Provost Brady Deaton becomes interim chancellor at MU this fall, campus administrator Lori Franz will step into Deaton’s shoes.
Deaton announced Monday that Franz — vice provost of undergraduate studies since 2002 — will serve as interim provost starting Sept. 1. That’s when Deaton will at least temporarily succeed Chancellor Richard Wallace, who is retiring. Franz was notified of her new position last week.
“(I) am confident she will provide the continuity necessary to assure a seamless transition as I move into the role of interim chancellor,” Deaton said in a press release from MU News Bureau.
For her part, Franz said, “We realize the next year will be a time of transition; it is essential that no momentum be lost with respect to recent gains.”
Franz, 57, has been at MU since 1985, when she joined the faculty as an associate professor in the College of Business. She was promoted to professor of management in 1991, then served as associate dean and director of graduate studies for six years. In 1998, Franz became associate provost.
Due to budgetary constraints, the associate provost position merged with vice provost of undergraduate studies in 2002, Franz said. This was when she became vice provost.
“Between the two positions, I have gained considerable experience across many of the provost areas,” Franz said.
Franz said she also has experience working with the Coordinating Board for Higher Education, the UM system, educational technology, distance learning, development and campus strategic planning. She is the campus grievance officer, as well as coordinator of the upcoming accreditation process.
“Lori has been intimately involved in key issues and major decisions during her tenure in the provost’s office,” Deaton said in the media statement. “She has demonstrated that she possesses the experience and leadership skills necessary to guide the academic mission of a rigorous, (Association of American Universities), public, land-grant institution.”
As interim provost, Franz will be MU’s chief academic officer and, according to the Web site of the Office of the Provost, will oversee academic programs and academic support functions. Her duties will include reviewing university programs and handling faculty irresponsibility.
Franz said she would take on new initiatives carefully, instead choosing to focus on reinforcement of current strengths and preparation for new leadership.
“My main goal will be to keep MU moving forward in all aspects of the academic mission,” Franz said.
Missourian reporters Allison Sebolt and Jamie Nadolny contributed to this article.