SALT LAKE CITY, Oct. 30, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- The Western Governors University (WGU) Board of Trustees has elected Dr. Charles W. Sorenson, President and CEO Emeritus of Intermountain Healthcare, to the position of Chairman. Sorenson replaces former Wyoming Governor the Honorable Jim Geringer, who will continue to serve as an active board member. In addition, the Board elected 100Kin10 Co-founder and Executive Director Talia Milgrom-Elcott as a new board member.
Sorenson was elected to the WGU Board of Trustees in October 2015. Prior to his eight years as President and CEO of Intermountain, Sorenson served as Chief Operating Officer for 11 years and worked for decades as a urologic surgeon at the Utah-based, nonprofit hospital system—continuing to perform urologic cancer surgery even after moving into the C-suite. Currently, Intermountain employs nearly 600 WGU alumni.
Sorenson is a graduate of the Cornell University Medical College. In 2017, he received the Distinguished Service Award from the University of Utah School of Medicine.
"WGU is a remarkable institution, one that is redefining higher education and changing lives," Sorenson said. "Its willingness to embrace new technologies that improve student outcomes, combined with the personal initiative and accountability of its students, makes me proud to be part of helping WGU fulfill its mission."
Milgrom-Elcott joins the Board of Trustees with years of experience working in education, including more than five years as Executive Director of 100Kin10, a network of more than 300 partners working in response to President Obama's 2011 call to train 100,000 excellent new science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) teachers by 2021. WGU has been an active 100Kin10 partner since 2014 and is one of the nation's largest producers of STEM teaching graduates.
Before launching 100Kin10, Milgrom-Elcott served as Program Officer at Carnegie Corporation of New York and, before that, as Deputy Chief of Staff at the New York City Department of Education. She has her Juris Doctorate from Harvard Law School.
"If we're going to solve our biggest global and national challenges, many more people need relevant, authentic, high-quality learning opportunites. WGU is offering exactly those opportunities to hundreds of thousands of people, at a cost and on a timeline that works for them," Milgrom-Elcott said.
Geringer will continue to serve on the WGU Board of Trustees after having served as Chairman since 2005. Geringer was Governor of Wyoming when he, along with the Honorable Governor Michael O. Leavitt of Utah and the Honorable Governor Roy R. Romer of Colorado, proposed the creation of an online, competency-based university to the Western Governors' Association as a solution to a growing demand for a highly educated workforce.
"Governor Geringer's long-standing leadership has been at the core of WGU's ability to bridge the gap between talent and opportunity through high-quality, accessible, affordable higher education," said WGU President Scott D. Pulsipher. "We thank him deeply for his years of service and look forward to his continued participation. We're also proud and honored to welcome Dr. Sorenson as our new Chairman and Ms. Milgrom-Elcott as a new Trustee. Healthcare and K–12 education are two crucial areas of growth and rapid change in our economy, and their leadership and experience will serve WGU and our students very well."
Established in 1997 by 19 U.S. governors with a mission to expand access to high-quality, affordable higher education, online, nonprofit WGU now serves more than 119,000 students nationwide and has more than 158,000 graduates. Driving innovation as the nation's leading competency-based university, WGU has been recognized by the White House, state leaders, employers, and students as a model that works in postsecondary education. In just 22 years, the university has become a leading influence in the development of innovative workforce-focused approaches to education. WGU is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, has been named one of Fast Company's Most Innovative Companies, and has been featured on NPR, NBC Nightly News, CNN, and in The New York Times. Learn more at www.wgu.edu.
SOURCE Western Governors University