3 picked for UM Curators

The Senate is expected to vote on Blunt’s nominations before Feb. 2.
Wednesday, January 26, 2005 | 12:00 a.m. CST; updated 11:57 p.m. CDT, Sunday, July 20, 2008

Gov. Matt Blunt made three nominations Tuesday to the University of Missouri System Board of Curators to replace members whose terms expired Jan. 1.

Doug Russell of Lebanon, David Wasinger of St. Louis and John Carnahan III of Springfield, Mo., will be submitted to the state Senate for approval to serve six-year terms on the board, according to a press release from the governor’s office.

A simple majority is required for approval of the nominees, said Terri Durdaller, spokeswoman for Blunt. A letter of background information on the candidates has been submitted to the state Senate, and the assembly should vote on the nominees by Feb. 2, she said.

UM System spokesman Joe Moore said he is unaware of an instance in which a nominee did not receive Senate approval.

These nominees, if approved, would succeed Mary James of Harrisonville, Connie Burkhardt of St. Louis and Sean McGinnis of Springfield, Mo., all of whom were appointed to the board in 1999 by former Gov. Mel Carnahan.

The board consists of nine volunteers — with a student representative and a secretary — who make decisions affecting all four campuses of the UM system.

“The board conducts university business at its highest levels, including the hiring of the University of Missouri system president,” Moore said.

Although Russell, 51, may be a new face to current board members, he is not new to the board. Russell was a member from 1982-1987, serving as president, vice president and chairman of the Long Range Planning Committee.

“That experience gives me a background for understanding the university,” Russell said. “Certainly a lot of things have changed in the past 17 or so years, and I don’t claim to know the current issues, but I have a basis of service.”

Russell is an MU alumnus with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. He is president of the Durham Company, an electrical enclosures manufacturer from Lebanon. Russell will succeed James.

Wasinger, 41, is a St. Louis resident and will replace Burkhardt on the board. Wasinger is an attorney and managing partner of Murphy Wasinger, L.C. He is an MU alumnus, having received his bachelor’s degree in accounting from MU and a law degree from Vanderbilt University School of Law in Nashville. Wasinger’s siblings also attended MU.

“I am a big, active supporter of the University of Missouri,” Wasinger said. “I have strong feelings for the university and hope to contribute in any way I can.”

Springfield member McGinnis will be succeeded by Carnahan, 55. He is an attorney and founder of Carnahan, Evans, Cantwell & Brown, P.C. After receiving a bachelor’s degree in economics from Southwest Missouri State University, he earned a law degree from MU. He continued his education to receive an advanced law degree from the University of Miami.

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