Michael Boehm named university's IANR chief

Michael Boehm named university's IANR chief

Michael Boehm
Michael Boehm

Michael Boehm has been named the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Harlan Vice Chancellor for the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources and University of Nebraska vice president for Agriculture and Natural Resources.

"We are tremendously excited to have Dr. Boehm join us at Nebraska's land-grant university," Chancellor Ronnie Green said. "His vision, passion and experience will be instrumental in leading IANR to even greater accomplishments and service to Nebraskans and the world. Mike's background in research and teaching, his national leadership in plant pathology, and his leadership of system-wide initiatives at Ohio State make him extremely well qualified for this integral role. His energetic, inclusive and thoughtful approach is a fantastic fit for our culture, and we look forward to Mike taking IANR's recognized momentum to even higher levels of international leadership."

Boehm is currently professor of plant pathology and vice provost for academic and strategic planning at The Ohio State University. He has been responsible for strategic planning for Ohio State’s 15 colleges and six campuses; K-12 and community college partnerships; the University Libraries System, College of Public Affairs and Office of Institutional Research and Planning; dean reappointment and academic unit reviews; integrated capital planning; and classroom readiness. He oversees Ohio State's Discovery Themes initiative, a 10-year program to produce solutions to the challenges of the 21st century, and serves as co-lead for the Humanities and the Arts Discovery Theme.

Boehm, 51, is an authority on the integrated management of turfgrass diseases and focuses on the biology, ecology and management of fungal diseases. He also works on the integrated management of Fusarium head blight of wheat with a focus on the development of biological control strategies for this economically important and challenging disease. He is widely published, holds five U.S. and 15 international patents related to his work on the biocontrol of Fusarium head blight, and has secured significant external funding in support of his personal research. In 2013, Boehm was president of the American Phytopathological Society, the leading scientific organization for plant pathology in the world.

"The University of Nebraska is well-known for its leading work and contributions in ag and natural resources and human sciences, and I'm thrilled to have the opportunity to build on that work," Boehm said. "The people of Nebraska and the university are deeply committed to advancement in agriculture and sustainable use of natural resources, and there's an inherent understanding that what happens in Nebraska influences lives around the world. I'm eager to become part of that dynamic and honored to have the chance to work with IANR's amazing faculty, staff and students, as well as with external partners and renowned thought leaders in ag and natural resources."

Boehm will provide leadership for all agricultural and natural resource affairs at the university. In the dual role of IANR vice chancellor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and NU vice president for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Boehm has leadership of the campuses for all agricultural, natural resources and related affairs in the University of Nebraska system. As vice president, Boehm will oversee the executive directors of the Rural Futures Institute and the Daugherty Global Water for Food Institute and the dean of the Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture at Curtis. The vice chancellor is the chief administrative officer for IANR, which includes the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, the Agricultural Research Division, Nebraska Extension, and the IANR research and extension components of the College of Education and Human Sciences. The vice chancellor is responsible for an enterprise with more than 1,600 full-time employees including a tenure-track faculty of 330, nearly 40,000 acres of land and a budget with annual expenditures of over $215 million.

"Mike is a great addition to our university community," NU President Hank Bounds said. “The area of ag and natural resources has always been vital for our state and the work done here is of growing importance globally. Having Mike in this leadership role will further our contributions, elevating and accelerating research and collaboration needed to make a bigger impact on some of the world's most pressing challenges."

The appointment is pending Board of Regents approval. Boehm will join the university Jan. 1 and assume responsibilities from Ron Yoder, who was appointed IANR's interim vice chancellor shortly after Green vacated the position to become chancellor in May of this year.

"I want to particularly thank Ron Yoder for his excellent leadership of IANR during this transition," Green said. "As IANR's associate vice chancellor since 2011, Ron has provided exceptional and strategic leadership directly overseeing the unprecedented expansion of IANR's faculty by nearly 30 percent. I also want to thank the search committee of 29 individuals led by co-chairs Tiffany Heng-Moss and Mike Johanns for their outstanding service in this successful and timely search, as well as all candidates and finalists for this role. It's a testament to our international reputation in agriculture and natural resources that the university attracted such high-caliber candidates."