Jan. 3, 2008
CONTACT: Gordon Ovenshine:
SRU president earns Butler Health System board appointment
SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Robert Smith, president of Slippery Rock University, has been appointed to a three-year term on the Butler Health System board of trustees. The system includes Butler Hospital, its foundation and two medical practice groups.
The board appointed Smith because of his leadership with managing growth at SRU, one of the largest employers in Butler County.
"The health system and the University have quite a bit in common in the sense that they're public in nature and have a large number of employees," said Fred Bennett, a health system trustee. "He comes with experiences and capabilities that are pretty complementary to what we're doing with the health system."
Smith's term began Jan. 1. The trustees meet 10 times a year.
Smith, a former Butler resident, joined SRU in 1999 as provost and vice president for academic affairs. He became interim president in 2002 and the 15th president of SRU in May 2004.
In the past five years, SRU has earned more than a dozen new academic program accreditations and received four national awards for enhanced academic quality. Enrollment has increased to an all-time high and graduation rates have significantly improved.
Capital improvements are numerous. SRU has nearly completed a $130-million student-housing replacement project and opened its Advanced Technology and Science Hall. The campus continues to undergo renovations and is infused with new technology and greening initiatives.
An active community volunteer, Smith is the board chair of Leadership Pittsburgh Inc., and a member of the executive committee of Slippery Rock Economic Development, Inc., and the Butler County Community Development Corp.
Smith is a nationally recognized specialist in executive leadership development. A Kansas native, he is the only Kansan to have been selected as a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services fellow.
Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.