Robert M. La Follette School of Public Affairs
Monday, May 4, 2015

La Follette School of Public Affairs establishes Board of Visitors

Five charter members have joined a newly established Board of Visitors for the University of Wisconsin–Madison's Robert M. La Follette School of Public Affairs, according to Professor Susan Yackee, director of the school.

"I am pleased to announce these 'founding members' of our new board," says Yackee, adding: "Their combined experience, knowledge and love of the university and the state will help prepare our school for future challenges and growth."
The five are:

  • Curt S. Culver, chairman of MGIC Investment Corporation and its principal subsidiary, Mortgage Guaranty Insurance Corporation (MGIC), the nation's leaving private mortgage insurer. MGIC Investment Corporation is a publicly held corporation trading on the New York Stock Exchange.
  • Herb Kohl, a former U.S. senator and a Milwaukee businessman and philanthropist. Kohl was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 1988 and served four six‐year terms before deciding not to run for re‐election in 2012. In 1990, he established the Herb Kohl Education Foundation, which to this day provides fellowships to teachers and schools, and scholarships to students throughout Wisconsin.
  • Bob Lang, director of the Wisconsin Legislative Fiscal Bureau since 1977. The Fiscal Bureau is a nonpartisan service agency of the Wisconsin Legislature, providing policy, program and fiscal analyses to the Legislature, legislative leaders, the Joint Committee on Finance, and individual legislators.
  • Sheldon B. Lubar, founder and chairman of Lubar & Co., a private investment and wealth management office. He was chairman and chief executive officer of the Christiana Companies Inc. until its merger with Weatherford International in 1999 and chairman of Total Logistics Inc. until its acquisition in 2005 by SuperValu Inc. Widely known in financial circles, Lubar held governmental appointments under three presidents and is also a former president of the UW Board of Regents.
  • Michael Youngman, a retired executive officer and vice president of Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company. Youngman headed NML's government relations department, overseeing legislative and regulatory matters at the federal, state and local levels. He serves on the Wisconsin Historical Society Foundation's board as its vice president and becomes president in July.

Yackee brought the small group together in Milwaukee last month in advance of an official inaugural meeting scheduled for October. She says she hopes to add two or three more "founding members" before that meeting, with an ultimate goal of 20-25 members over the next few years.

The Milwaukee meeting put the nascent board "on a very strong and positive trajectory to help the La Follette School," Yackee says. "In the fall meeting, I expect to share our vision for continued growth and success and look forward to getting the advice and counsel of our board."

Over time, Yackee says, the current and future board members will contribute greatly to the school.

"We know the skills and interests they bring to the board will help the school face several challenges, including reduced state funding, increased competition in recruiting and retaining world‐class faculty, and in recruiting the most competitive students. We are thrilled to have people of their caliber at our side."