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Kathleen Wilbur, vice president of Government and External Relations, appointed to job at Michigan State University


Kathleen M. Wilbur, right, writes down information from the Board of Trustees Meeting on Sept. 20th. 

Kathleen Wilbur, vice president for Government and External Relations at Central Michigan University, has been appointed to an executive position at Michigan State University by Interim President John Engler.

Wilbur’s official title at MSU is executive vice president for Government and External Relations.

“(Wilbur’s) credentials are impeccable," Engler said in a MSU Media Communications press release. "She has directed large, complex organizations in higher education and in state government. She is a collaborative and strategic decision maker. Her skill set will be extremely valuable at this time for MSU."

Wilbur came to CMU in 2002. She served as the university's interim president from 2009-2010 — bridging the gap between former CMU President Michael Rao, who left to become the president of Virginia Commonwealth University, and current president George Ross. She has also served as vice president for Development and External Relations. 

Before working at CMU, Wilbur worked in state government as Director of the Michigan Department of Consumer and Industry Services, Director of the Michigan Department of Commerce, Deputy Director of the Michigan Department of Commerce and Director of the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulation, according to the release.

Other roles Wilbur served include Chief of Staff to State Senator William Sederburg and the MSU Board of Trustees from 1984-1990, according to the release.

Wilbur is a member of the Michigan Women’s Hall of Fame and is the only woman to direct three Michigan state departments. She received her bachelor’s degree, master’s degree and doctorate from MSU.

"As a proud MSU aluma, I am looking forward to returning and doing anything I can to help assist my alma mater," Wilbur said in the release. "I am honored to have this tremendous opportunity to help this great institution."

Ross said he is in the process of determining next steps, according to a University Communications press release.

"I thank (Wilbur) for her service to CMU and wish her well in her new role," Ross said in the release. "I hope she can be instrumental in helping MSU heal and move forward."

Engler also appointed Emily Gerkin Guerrant as vice president and university spokesperson. Guerrant has most recently served as Senior Vice President of Communications, Marketing and Public Relations for the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), according to the release. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Political Science from CMU. 

“I’m grateful for the opportunity to be a part of rebuilding a new culture at MSU, one that is focused on collaboration and transparency,” Guerrant said in the release. “A strong communications platform helps any organization. I look forward to joining the university’s team and working on the renewed trust being built with the community.”


About Evan Sasiela

Evan Sasiela is the University Editor at Central Michigan Life and a senior at Central Michigan ...

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