Past Chancellors

Daniel E. Little

Daniel E. Little

Chancellor (July 2000 – Present)

Bernard W. Klein

Bernard W. Klein

July 1979 – June 1980 (acting chancellor)
September – December 1992 (interim chancellor)
July 1999 – June 2000 (interim chancellor)

  • Bernard W. Klein served as interim chancellor or acting chancellor of UM-Dearborn three times. He directed the UM-Dearborn Center for Urban Studies from 1971-75 and is professor emeritus of political sciences and public administration.  A recipient of the Distinguished Teaching Award from UM-Dearborn in 1990, he retired from active faculty status in 1993.  Klein joined UM-Dearborn in 1971 as a professor of political science.  Before coming to UM-Dearborn, he served as assistant director of workmen’s compensation in the state of Michigan. He also was the supervisor of the Lansing office of U-M’s Institute of Public Administration, controller of the city of Detroit under Mayor Jerome Cavanaugh (1967-70), visiting professor in the U-M School of Social Work and vice president of administration at Wayne County Community College.   He took a leave of absence from 1980-1981 to serve as vice president for labor, urban and metropolitan studies and then interim provost at Wayne State University. 

    Klein holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Brooklyn College, a Master of Arts degree from the University of Missouri and a Ph.D. from Michigan State University.

    Interesting fact about Klein: He has served as a trusted adviser to governors, mayors, and legislators.

James C. Renick

James C. Renick

Chancellor (January 1993 – July 1999)

  • James C. Renick was named the fourth chancellor of UM-Dearborn in January 1993. Prior to UM-Dearborn, he served as vice provost of George Mason University. Earlier posts included academic and administrative positions at University of West Florida and University of South Florida. He left UM-Dearborn in 1999 to become president of North Carolina A & T State University. He stayed at that position until 2006 and later served as vice president at the American Council on Education, senior adviser to the president and provost at Jackson State University. 

    Interesting fact about Renick: He emphasized the importance of making UM-Dearborn more fully an "interactive campus" with the community it serves, southeastern Michigan. He focused on four areas in order to further the mission of the university: (1) expand our capacity as a truly interactive university, responsive to educational, cultural, economic, intellectual issues and needs of the region; (2) build on our strong commitment to students; (3) solidify external support; and (4) expand the uses of information technology to enhance teaching and learning. Under his leadership, UM-Dearborn experienced several important developments: (1) a new mission statement was formulated; (2) a new set of campus bylaws provided for a Faculty Senate for the first time in the campus's history; and (3) funds were received from the state for the construction of four major new facilities for the School of Engineering, the School of Management, the Center for Corporate and Professional Development, and the College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters. The first three of these four buildings were completed between 1994 and 1997, and the fourth, the CASL Building, opened in the summer of 2001. 

 Blenda J. Wilson

Blenda J. Wilson

Chancellor (July 1988 – August 1992)

  • Blenda J. Wilson became the first woman to head a public university in the state of Michigan when she was appointed the third chancellor at UM-Dearborn, as well as professor of public administration and education. Wilson began her academic career as an assistant to the provost at Rutgers University.  She then moved to Harvard University, where she served as associate dean for administration, then as senior associate dean in the Graduate School of Education.  She left academia for several years to serve as a vice president at Independent Sector in Washington D.C., then concurrent appointments in Colorado as executive director of the State Department of Higher Education and state cabinet officer, before moving to Michigan.  Wilson left UM-Dearborn in 1992 to become President of California State University-Northridge (1992-1999), then served as president and chief executive officer of the Nellie Mae Education Foundation (1999-2006).  

    She earned a B.A. in English education from Cedar Crest College, an M.A. in education from Seton Hall University, and a Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration from Boston College. 

    Interesting fact about Wilson: As chancellor, Wilson was credited with providing extraordinary vision and energetic leadership. Under her leadership the Dearborn campus became an option for many inner-city youth and Arab Americans who might not have considered college a possibility. Minority enrollment was 5.7 percent when Wilson took office in 1988. By 1992, it had grown to 6.9 percent. The Detroit Free Press, May 21, 1992, noted that "students, faculty and alumni credit Wilson with making the Dearborn campus, which long had stood in the shadow of its Ann Arbor sister, more visible."

William A. Jenkins

William A. Jenkins 

Chancellor (July 1980 – June 1988)

  • William Jenkins began his academic career teaching English and education at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and rose to the positions of associate dean and acting dean of the university’s School of Education.  He served in several other academic appointments at other universities before being named the second chancellor of the University of Michigan-Dearborn, effective July 1980. 
    Jenkins earned a Bachelor of Science degree in education from New York University and a Master of Science and Ph.D. from the University of Illinois.  Jenkins retired from the University in 1988. 
    Interesting fact about Jenkins: He made many contributions to University of Michigan-Dearborn during his tenure as the second chancellor and first African-American to hold the position.  The state of Michigan experienced an economic downturn during 1981-1982 that resulted in a substantial reduction in state funding to higher education.  It was Jenkins’ unenviable duty to balance the budget in part by reducing expenses and raising tuition significantly.  He also oversaw the long awaited opening of the new library in 1981, the celebration of UM-Dearborn’s 25th anniversary in 1984, the opening of the Manufacturing Systems Engineering Laboratory Building in 1988, and an increase in student population from 6,400 to 7,300. 
Leonard E. Goodall

Leonard E. Goodall

Chancellor (August 1971 – June 1979)

  • Leonard E. “Pat” Goodall, was appointed the first chancellor of UM-Dearborn in August 1971.  He previously served in faculty positions at Arizona State University and University of Illinois at Chicago Circle, where he also served as an associate dean and as vice chancellor. He left UM-Dearborn to become president of University of Nevada-Las Vegas (UNLV) in 1979. In 1984, Goodall returned to the faculty of public administration at UNLV, where he taught until his retirement in 2000. 

    Goodall earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Central Missouri State University, a Master of Arts degree from University of Missouri, and a Ph.D. from the University of Illinois.  

    Interesting fact about Goodall: In 1971, UM-Dearborn grew rapidly from just under 1,000 students to more than 6,000 in 1979. During this period there was a scramble just to supply the courses and facilities needed to accommodate the soaring student population. New faculty were added at the rate of 10 to 20 per year, and the face of the campus changed, as a whole new set of buildings—the University Mall, the Fieldhouse, and the library—was planned and constructed to the south of the original four buildings on the north side of campus.

Norman Scott

Norman Scott

Dean (September 1968 – July 1971)

  • Before becoming dean of the University of Michigan’s Dearborn Campus, effective September 1, 1968, Norman Scott served as associate dean of the University of Michigan College of Engineering in Ann Arbor.  He earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from the University of Illinois, where he also served as an assistant professor prior to his appointment at U-M.

    The name of the campus was officially changed to University of Michigan-Dearborn as of April 1971.

    Interesting fact about Scott: Scott was passionate about engineering and logical design of electronic computers and arithmetic systems for computers. He was a member of the computer advisory group of the Atomic Energy Commission.

William E Stirton

William E. Stirton 

Director (October 1958 – August 1968)

  • William E. Stirton, who earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering and master’s degree in physics and mathematics, both from University of Michigan, returned to his alma mater as a vice president in 1956.  He came from Wayne State University, where he served as an assistant to the president and director of community relations, then vice president for university services and development.  He was appointed director of the newly created University of Michigan Dearborn Center, effective October 1, 1958, and welcomed its first classes of students in September 1959.  Stirton continued to serve as a vice president of U-M Ann Arbor during this time. He served as director of the Dearborn Center until his retirement in August 1968. 

    The Stirton Professorship was established in 1977 "as a tribute to a distinguished educator and administrator who was an inspiration to students and faculty while at UM-Dearborn," according to the Regents memo on the appointment.

    Interesting fact about Stirton: Historical documents describe Stirton as uniquely qualified to serve as director of the Dearborn Center, since he was in a position to smooth over many intra-university problems during the founding of the campus.  In addition to his knowledge of university systems, Stirton also was well acquainted with the Detroit area business and industrial community.  He was completely committed to the cooperative education emphasis of the new campus and was indefatigable in setting forth the rational and advantages of the university’s making such a program available in the Detroit area.  In the early 1960s, when actual enrollments were lower than projected, some administrators in Ann Arbor began to suggest closing the Dearborn Center. Stirton was a staunch defender of the campus and pointed out the need for increased central university support to allow for the development of much-needed facilities and programming.