Board fills spot

Sep 132010
Authors: Kirsten Silveira

Colorado’s Chief Operating Officer Don Elliman will assume a recently-vacated position on the CSU System Board of Governors.

Following the death of long-time member Tom Farley last month, the board was charged with informally appointing an individual to serve the remainder of Farley’s term.

Elliman, who served on the search committee that elected Joe Blake as system chancellor, was sworn in at the board’s Sept. 9 meeting.

Traditionally, the governor appoints people to the BOG. In the event of a death or resignation of a board member, the other members choose someone to fill the empty seat to serve through the remainder of the term. Farley’s term was slated to end on Dec. 31, 2011.

The process for filling the spot includes the board chair, Pat McConathy, seeking recommendations from campus administration and his fellow members. Elliman had “the strongest voice of support,” said Michele McKinney, spokeswoman for the BOG.

The list of recommended individuals was unavailable because the process is informal, McKinney said.

In his career, Elliman has worked in leadership positions including publisher of People magazine, publishing director of Time International and president of Sports Illustrated magazine.

Evan Dreyer, spokesman for Gov. Bill Ritter, confirmed that Elliman would continue to serve as the state’s chief operating officer until a new governor takes office in January.

As chief operating officer, Elliman manages state agencies and chairs the Colorado Recovery Accountability Board, which watches state spending under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

Elliman can contribute to CSU’s discussions regarding higher education funding through his experience on Ritter’s Higher Education Strategic Planning Committee. He also takes notice of the importance of having an educated workforce and how accessibility and affordability play into that dynamic, McKinney said.

“He knows that higher education is the nucleus to produce human capital,” she said.

Assistant News Editor Kirsten Silveira can be reached at

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