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Wayne State University Board of Governors elects 2009 officers

February 12, 2009

Richard Bernstein

Tina Abbott

John L. Davis

Julie H. Miller

The Wayne State University Board of Governors unanimously elected Richard Bernstein and Tina Abbott to one-year terms as the board's chair and vice chair, respectively.

The eight-member board elected the two at its Jan. 22 meeting. Bernstein is completing an eight-year term that runs through 2010, and Abbott's eight-year term runs through 2012.

Bernstein, a Birmingham, Mich., resident, is an attorney with the Farmington Hills-based Bernstein Law Firm representing victims of personal injury or disability discrimination. He is on the Board of Directors for several not-for-profit organizations and teaches a political science course in social activism at the University of Michigan.

He has been honored as a "Michiganian of the Year" by the Detroit News, one of Crain's Detroit Business' "40 Under 40," and was recognized on worldwide television by CNN as a leader in keeping government honest. He also is the recipient of the 2008 John W. Cummiskey Pro Bono Award from the State Bar of Michigan, and was selected by The Young Lawyers Section of the State Bar of Michigan as the 2003-2004 Regeana Myrick Outstanding Young Lawyer Award recipient for outstanding commitment to public service.

Bernstein graduated summa cum laude from the University of Michigan and is a member of Phi Beta Kappa. He earned a Juris Doctor degree from the Northwestern University School of Law.

Abbott, a resident of Brownstown, Mich., was elected Secretary-Treasurer of the Michigan AFL-CIO in 1999 at the state federation's convention in Dearborn and re-elected in 2003 and 2007. She was involved in many union activities,
participating in the Community Action Program (CAP) of the UAW as secretary and later District Chairperson. She also was on the Civil Rights Committee and the bargaining team of UAW Local 6000. She is chairperson of the Labor Constituency Council of Michigan, a lifetime member of the NAACP and co-founder of the Ironing Board Brigade.

Abbott is a graduate of the Wayne State University Labor School and Wayne County Community College. She is vice chair of the Michigan Democratic Party and a member of the Democratic National Committee.

John L. Davis, of Detroit, Mich., and Oak Park, Mich., resident Julie H. Miller also received unanimous votes to one-year terms as 2009 board officers.

Davis, re-elected treasurer of the board, has been an administrative officer to the Board of Governors since 1993. He is vice president, treasurer and chief financial officer at Wayne State.

Miller was re-elected secretary to the board. She has been an administrative officer to the Board of Governors since 2001. Miller is secretary of the university and senior executive assistant to the president.

Wayne State University's Board of Governors is one of three university governing bodies in Michigan (including the University of Michigan and Michigan State University) that has constitutional independence. Its members, who serve eight-year terms, are elected by voters throughout Michigan.

Wayne State University is a premier institution of higher education offering more than 350 academic programs through 13 schools and colleges to more than 31,000 students.

  • Contact: Tom Reynolds
  • Voice: (313) 577-8093
  • Email: treynolds@wayne.edu
  • Fax: (313) 577-4459
  • Website: www.media.wayne.edu
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