(BEAUMONT) – The Board of Regents of the Texas State University System today re-elected Donna N. Williams of Arlington as chairman of the board, a position in which she has served since November 2012. Williams is a vice president and program manager for Parsons Government Services, a subsidiary of the Parsons Corporation, a global engineering and construction leader in facilities, advanced technology, and management processes. She was first appointed to the Board of Regents by Governor Rick Perry in 2008.
The Board of Regents also re-elected Ron Mitchell of Horseshoe Bay as vice chairman. Mitchell is manager and vice chairman of Horseshoe Bay Resort Enterprise and a director and vice chairman both in the Horseshoe Bay Resort and Members Club, Inc., and in the Horseshoe Bay Development Company, Inc. He was appointed to the Board of Regents by Governor Perry in 2009.
In other business, the Board of Regents approved a Guaranteed Price Plan for the System’s baccalaureate degree-granting institutions. The optional four-year, fixed-rate tuition plan is designed to provide undergraduate students and parents with more predictability when paying for college, and to encourage more timely graduation within the four years of fixed tuition. The plan guarantees the rates for tuition and mandatory fees will not increase for participating students for 12 consecutive semesters.
Students are not required to participate in the fixed-rate program and can continue to pay standard tuition rates if they choose. The fixed-rate tuition option will be available to students starting in the fall 2014 semester. TSUS is the first university system to implement a fixed-rate tuition option for students under legislation approved during the 2013 legislative session.
The Board of Regents also recognized Michael R.J. Forstner, Ph.D., and Balasundram Maniam, Ph.D., as 2013 Regents’ Professors. Dr. Forstner, a professor of biology at Texas State University, has conducted research on three continents and is internationally recognized for his expertise in wildlife biology. He has supported the research projects of more than 60 students and is a three-time winner of the Texas State University Presidential Award for Excellence in Scholarly Activity.
Dr. Maniam is a professor of finance at Sam Houston State University. He was recognized for his devotion to students, which is reflected not only in a lengthy record of consistently superior student evaluations, but also in a commitment to innovation in teaching, as evidenced by his groundbreaking development of online courses in finance.
Each year, the Board of Regents of The Texas State University System honors professors whose performance and contributions to the educational community have been exemplary. Recipients of the Regents' Professor award maintain this title for the duration of their service within the university system, receive a $5,000 award and a commemorative medallion. Since 2007, twenty distinguished faculty members from TSUS institutions have received the Regents’ Professor award.
The Board of Regents, the governing body for TSUS and its eight component institutions, held its quarterly meeting Nov. 7-8 on the campus of Lamar University in Beaumont.