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Bios for Board candidates

2015 Candidate for President-elect


Donna PetersonDonna Peterson, P & A, retired in 2012 after 22 years at the University. She began her U of M career as director of State Relations in 1990, later serving as associate vice president for Government and Community Relations. As the chief liaison for the University at the state capitol, in Washington D.C., and local municipalities, she communicated with members of the Minnesota Legislature, Congress, the governor, and other elected officials. As associate vice president, Donna oversaw the activities of the directors of federal, state, and community relations, and legislative advocacy initiatives. Prior to Donna's tenure at the University, she was an elected member of the Minnesota Senate and the House of Representatives. Donna has served on the UMRA Board since May 2014.

2015 Candidate for Treasurer

Carl AdamsCarl Adams retired in 2013 from the faculty of Information and Decision Sciences in the Carlson School of Management (CSOM). His expertise includes strategy and structure of information systems/information technology (IS/IT). His leadership experience includes department chairman for 18 years, special assistant for Planning for Bob Stein and subsequently Nils Hasselmo, and director of the Management Information Systems Research Center in CSOM for six years. He also served the University senate in many capacities over 40 years. "I see UMRA as a win-win activity for its members and for the University that I want to be active in supporting." Carl has served on the UMRA Board since May 2014.

2015 Candidate for Secretary

Chip Peterson retired from the Learning Abroad Center in 2012 after a 32-year career in study abroad, including such areas as advising, policy development, academic oversight, program budgeting and management, new program development, curriculum integration, and faculty training. His passion for social justice-focused experiential learning found expression through decades of involvement in both HECUA (Higher Education Consortium for Urban Affairs) and the U of M's MSID (Minnesota Studies in International Development). A geographer and Latin Americanist by training, he has lived a total of seven years in South America (Peace Corps, research on urban social issues, onsite direction of study abroad programs, and a year hitchhiking throughout the continent). He and his wife Rosa María have been UMRA members since his retirement.

2015 Candidates to serve on the board of directors

Steve Benson retired in 2013 as the executive director of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, having also been a founder and executive director of OLLI's predecessor, the ElderLearning Institute. He was a producer/host on Public Radio KUOM for 22 years. During his 41-year career at the University he involved many U of M faculty, staff, and students in broadcast and teaching activities, including many current members of UMRA. "As a lifelong learner and active member of the University community, I am delighted to continue to be of service to UMRA and the broader U of M community."


Gloria Williams retired in 2009 after teaching and research activities for 14 years on the faculty of the Department of Design, Housing, and Apparel, College of Design. She says that the best part of teaching was having graduate students in her classes analyze the structures of knowledge in their subject matter, noting gaps, contradictions, claims, etc., along with the practical applications that made a difference in peoples' lives. In 2013, she received a Professional Development Grant for retirees to do research on crafting an intellectual biography of Joanne Bubolz Eicher. She has been an UMRA member since 2009. "Becoming a board member will provide a further opportunity to be involved in giving service to UMRA, its members, and the University community," she said.

2014 and prior

2014 Candidate for President-elect

Jean KinseyJean Kinsey retired in 2010 after 34 years on the faculty of Applied Economics at the U of M. She served as director of The Food Industry Center, 1995-2010. Other leadership positions include: chair of the Board of Directors of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis 1996-1997; president of the American Agricultural Economics Association, 2000-2002; expert panel member for the Institute of Medicine under The National Academies for a study of policies related to the federal food program for Women Infants and Children (WIC) and (currently) a Framework for Analyzing the Health, Social and Economic Effects of the US Food System; Board of Managers, PJM, LLC. Philadelphia, PA, 2003-present.
As a member of UMRA, Jean has been active in the UMRA Photo Club since its inception. She is excited to work with UMRA colleagues to continue to build programs to serve our retirees and the broader community. 


2014 Candidates to serve on the board of directors

Carl AdamsCarl Adams retired in 2013 from the faculty of Information and Decision Sciences in the Carlson School of Management (CSOM). His expertise includes Strategy and structure of information systems/information technology (IS/IT) functional organizations.
He was department chairman for 18 years, special assistant for Planning for Bob Stein and subsequently Nils Hasselmo, and also the director of the Management Information Systems Research Center in CSOM for six years. “I see the UMRA as a win-win activity for its members and for the University that I want to be active in supporting." I have served the University Senate in many capacities--senator, committee member and committee chair over the past 40 years.

Roger ClemenceRoger Clemence was a member of the faculty in Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Urban Studies from 1966 until 1997 and served as associate dean and interim dean for the college.
Throughout his teaching years Roger was involved with design course work that helped students work with, and in, the community via what was called Service/Learning. He directed the Urban Education Center for the University's Center for Urban and Regional Affairs from 1970 to 1977, and, in 1985, developed an Extension Independent Study offering with Professor Judith Martin that morphed into a multi-disciplinary seminar called The Meanings of Place. Until 2009, he taught collaboratively in a graduate seminar called “Place: Meaning and Making.”

Roger was named a Morse Alumni Distinguished Teacher in 1973, and he has been a Landscape Architecture Fellow of ASLA since 1989. He believes deeply in the merits of cross-disciplinary teaching and learning. He has been a member of UMRA for many years and has many friends among its members.

Sherilyn Goldsmith MaySherilyn Goldsmith May, civil service, retired in 2009 after 17 years as education specialist at the University of Minnesota Child Development Center in the College of Education and Human Development. Sheri served on the advisory boards for the University’s Center for Early Education (CEED), the Early Childhood Programs at North Hennepin Technical College, and was a member of the University’s Institutional Review Board for the Study of Human Subjects for four years. She has a Ph.D. in Family Education. Sheri joined UMRA in 2009 and is a member of UMRA Photo Club. “I very much enjoyed my years at the U, as I felt part of something immediate, yet global. My interest in becoming an UMRA board member is to continue to be involved in, and of service to, the University community.”

Jeanne MarkellJeanne Markell retired in July 2009 from a 40-year career at the University of Minnesota. In 1987 Jeanne became U of M Legislative director for the Institute of Agriculture, Forestry and Home Economics. Subsequent roles in central administration included chief of staff to Interim President Richard Sauer and President Nils Hasselmo, assistant VP for External Affairs, and associate provost for Professional Studies. In 1997, Jeanne returned to U of M Extension as associate dean for External Relations. The final two years of Jeanne’s career were spent in Washington. D.C., as the Tabor Land Grant Fellow for the National Association of Counties.

Donna PetersonDonna Peterson, P&A, retired in 2012 after 22 years at the University. She began as director of State relations in 1990, later serving as associate vice president for government and community relations. As the chief liaison for the University at the State Capitol, in Washington D.C., and local municipalities, she communicated with the State Legislature, Congress, the governor, and other elected officials. As associate vice president, Donna oversaw the activities of the directors of federal, state and community relations, and legislative advocacy initiatives. Prior to Donna's tenure at the University, she was a member of the Minnesota Senate and the House of Representatives.