Charles Lee Isbell Jr. named UW–Madison provost

Charles Lee Isbell Jr.

Charles Lee Isbell Jr.

The University of Wisconsin–Madison’s next provost, Charles Lee Isbell Jr., has a deep and distinguished background that blends institutional leadership in computer science, research into machine learning and artificial intelligence, and interdisciplinary collaboration.

“I am tremendously excited to welcome Dr. Isbell to my leadership team and our community,” says Chancellor Jennifer L. Mnookin. “In addition to his exceptional credentials as a scholar, he is an experienced and effective administrator, a skilled collaborator and an advocate for access to STEM and higher education.”

“I am confident that his leadership as our next provost will help advance UW–Madison’s teaching, scholarship and outreach mission in the years to come,” she adds.

The provost is the university’s chief academic officer and second-ranking leader under the chancellor. Isbell will begin in his new role on August 1, succeeding Karl Scholz, who is departing to assume the presidency of the University of Oregon. Letters & Science Dean Eric Wilcots is serving as interim provost.

“Throughout my academic career I have been focused on research and educational reform,” says Isbell, who describes himself as a computationalist. “I am a strong believer that higher education must play a vital role in creating opportunities for deep engagement in what it means to be an active and productive member of society.

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