The student news site of University of Wisconsin-Platteville.


The student news site of University of Wisconsin-Platteville.


The student news site of University of Wisconsin-Platteville.


UWP Provost and Vice Chancellor Candidates

Four forums held to gather evaluations for Academic Affairs

UW-Platteville announced the candidate forums for the position of Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs held on Jan. 25, 26, 29 and Feb. 1 from 2:15 to 3:30 p.m. in the Markee Pioneer Student Center.
Four candidates are in consideration including Laura K. Reynolds, Ph.D., Mary Black, Scott Billingsley, Ph.D. and Patrick Pease, Ph.D. All candidates provided a curriculum vitae prior to the forum.
Communications Director Allison Parkins explained in an email to the university, “Provosts manage most aspects of the students’ educational experience. At UW-Platteville, this includes the three colleges: Business, Industry, Life Science and Agriculture (BILSA); Engineering, Mathematics and Science (EMS); and Liberal Arts and Education (LAE), as well as the Baraboo Sauk County campus. The provost’s office also oversees several other areas including, but not limited to, advising, libraries, Office of Research and Sponsored Programs, International Programs, Center of Excellence for Teaching and Learning and more.”
After the forums, all students and faculty were encouraged to provide feedback about each candidate.

Laura K. Reynolds, Ph.D.

Reynolds received her bachelors in Geography, Russian and Political Science in 1989 at Michigan State, her masters in American History in 1991 at Midwestern State University-Texas and her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology and Research Methodology in 2007 at the University of South Carolina.
In a recent administrative appointment from May 2022 to the present, she is the Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs for Missouri Western State University with multiple years of being a professor, Dean and Associate Dean for University of Michigan-Dearborn (2005-2017) and the University of South Carolina Upstate (2018-2022).
Multiple accomplishments are included in her curriculum vitae. At Missouri Western State University, Reynolds “launched academic strategic plan and balanced scorecard development for colleges, departments and Academic Affairs alongside the master academic plan and HLC preparation” and “developed ‘“SPARK”’ collaboration sessions with faculty senate to increase communication and facilitate collaborative policy innovation.”
Among academic accomplishments, Reynolds has other affiliations professionally such as being a Board Member of United Way of Saint Joseph (2023), President of South Carolina Education Deans Alliance (2021-2022) and a Board Member of South Carolina Association of School Administrators (2021-2024).

Mary M. Black

Black earned her B.A. in Theatre with a minor in English from the University of Iowa in 2006 and her MFA in Theatre Technology from Indiana University in 2009.
Black served as the Provost for Millikin University since 2021, where she was responsible for achieving the university’s academic goals. She additionally developed and managed budgets for all areas of academic affairs.
Before her Provost position, Black was the director of the School of Theatre and Dance at Millikin University from 2016-2021 where she oversaw revisions to assessment models and learning outcomes.
At Millikin University, Black taught as an assistant professor (2009-2015,) an associate professor (2015-2021) and 2021 through the present teaches as a professor.
Among publications and presentations Black has showcased, “Beyond Tenure: Promotion to Full Professor, Post-Tenure Reviews and Beyond” and “You’ve Been Named Chair: Navigating New Territory A Servant of Two Masters: Selecting an Academic Theatre Season that Satisfies Student, Faculty and Audience Needs.”
Black has multiple awards including “Cesar Chavez Award for Advocating for Social Justice” and “Dr. Ralph A. Czerwinski and Dr. Deborah L. Slayton Teaching Excellence and Campus Leadership Award.”

Scott C. Billingsley, Ph.D.

Billingsley has a Ph.D. in American History from Auburn University, a M.A. in American History from Middle Tennessee State University and a B.A. in Social Studies Education from David Lipscomb University.
Billingsley has served as Associate Provost and Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke from June 2015-present, Interim Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke (Jan. 2017-May 2017) and Interim Associate Vice Chancellor for Enrollment Management at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke (June 2016-Dec. 2016 and (Nov. 2021-Oct. 2023.) He has also held the position of Interim Associate Vice Chancellor for Engaged Outreach at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke (Aug. 2017-July 2018.)
Billingsley has chaired several committees such as the Search Committee for Dean of College of Arts and Sciences (2015-2016,) the Search Committee for AVC for Global Engagement (2018-2019,) the Search Committee for University Registrar in 2023, the University Athletic Committee (2006-2016,) the Academic Calendar Committee (2015-present,)the Commencement Planning Team (2017-present,) the Withdrawal for Extenuating Circumstances Committee from 2021-present and the Academic and Financial Aid Appeals Committee (2021-2023. )

Patrick Pease, Ph.D.

Pease has a Bachelor of Science and Master of Arts degree in Geology, both of which he got from Indiana State University. Pease then went to Texas A&M to get his Ph.D. in Geography.
Pease began his work in administration at the University of Northern Iowa in 2006, where he has worked for the past 16 years. He started as the department head of the Geography department, which saw him double undergraduate enrollment rates in his department. He was promoted temporarily to the Interim Dean of Social and Behavioral sciences in 2016, and then fully promoted to dean of the graduate college in 2017, as well as the interim position for Associate Provost for Academic Affairs.
In 2018, Pease would be fully promoted to Associate Provost for Academic Affairs. While in the position, Pease has “crafted new strategies for admissions scholarships” to increase both enrollment and revenue, improved inclusivity with preferred pronoun systems, name pronunciation information and a new culturally-sensitive mindfulness space in the library.
He was also a lead in the campus-wide effort to reopen in-person learning following the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2021, Pease briefly served as the Interim Executive Vice President and provost, and although he only held the position for one month, he started training workshops based around ensuring faculty were up to date about new policies and guidelines based around state laws associated with free speech.

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