James S. Crown, Chairman of the University's Board of Trustees, announced that he will step down from that post this spring. He will remain a Trustee of the University.
Crown has served as Chairman of the Board since 2003, making this his sixth year-the typical length of service for board chairs at the University. The Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees is expected to nominate a new chair this month, and the full board will elect the next chair at its meeting in March.
Since Crown became Chairman, the University has completed the largest capital campaign in its history; reorganized the governance structure of the Medical Center to better integrate medical research, education and clinical care; and significantly renovated and expanded the campus' facilities.
"Jim helped shape our vision of a civic-minded, outward-facing University, leading efforts such as our commitment to improving urban education, our engagement in the 2016 Olympics bid and our academic programs abroad," said University President Robert J. Zimmer. "Under his leadership, the University was awarded contracts to manage Argonne and Fermilab, and he led the search that resulted in my appointment as president in 2006."
Crown also serves as the Chairman of the Medical Center Board of Trustees, and as Chairman of the Medical Center Executive Committee.
Crown and the Crown family have supported many areas of the University through their philanthropy, including leadership giving in undergraduate financial aid, the Chicago Public Schools Scholarship program, the Collegiate Scholars Program, charter school establishment and sustainability initiatives.
In addition to Crown's service to the University, he is the president of Henry Crown and Company. He also serves on the boards of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the Museum of Science and Industry.
"I am deeply grateful for Jim's leadership, which has served the Board and the University remarkably well, and I am delighted that we will continue to benefit from his energy, ideas and support as a Trustee in the years ahead," Zimmer said.