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April 22, 2014 - Image 12

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2014-04-22

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4B - Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Leader strengthened ties in Athletics

the U
in bet
ties -
sity u
said A
sity p
with a
the U
a scan
of viol
by Co

oleman faced edswiftly,puttingthe men's bas-
ketball team on probation for two
veral hurdles in years and declaring it ineligible
for the 2002 to 2003 postseason.
r work with the Most importantly, the Univer-
iletic Department sity vacated the achievements of
all involved players, including
banners from Final Four appear-
By LEV FACHER ances in 1992 and 1993. Though
who has this position the University's disassociation
period with former players Chris
ile it may be true that Webber, Louis Bullock and Mau-
Sue Coleman's tenure as rice Taylor ended in May 2013,
Jniversity's 13th President Coleman has stood by the deci-
and ended with an ath- sion she made in the infancy of
scandal, what she and the her tenure in Ann Arbor to not
gan Athletic Department acknowledge the Final Four
aplished in the dozen years appearances.
tween is nothing short of "I don't think she was forced
kable. to make a decision," said Athletic
ce assuming office in 2002, Director Dave Brandon. "I think
san has witnessed the reno- the facts and circumstances led
of the University's three her to the decision she reached."
important athletic facili- Following the aftereffects of a
Michigan Stadium, Crisler scandal she had no prior involve-
r and Yost Arena. She wit- ment in, Coleman and former
d the football team lose to Athletic Director Bill Martin
achian State in 2007, was turned their attention to a long-
nt for the men's basketball awaited project: renovating
s first Final Four appear- Michigan Stadium to add luxury
since 1993 and saw the boxes and club seats to the coun-
y team miss the NCAA try's largest football stadium.
lament for the first time in "Her biggest contribution was
memory for most Univer- overcoming the skepticism of
ndergraduates. some of our major stakeholders,"
.e was the perfect choice," Martin said. "They were very
kssociate Athletic Director fearful that we'd destroy, aes-
Madej. "She understood thetically, Michigan Stadium."
ics. She understood aca- "I recall the various presenta-
s. She understood Univer- tions we would make to regents,
olicy, understood working alumnigroups," he added. "Many
community." felt it was much too risky. We had
enColeman began in2002, to do it because the infrastruc-
niversity was embroiled in ture was literally crumbling....
dal stemming from a series (Coleman) was really instru-
ations committed by men's mental, and I'm not sure it would
ball players, coaches and have happened had I not had her
r booster Ed Martin. Led support."
leman, Michigan respond- The facility revamps did not

start with the positive-revenue
teams' facilities, either. Under
Coleman, the Athletic Depart-
ment unveiled a comprehensive
plan to revamp South Campus,
which will feature a new multi-
purpose indoor arena, a new
indoor track stadium and a "Walk
of Champions" connecting the
facilities on an east-west axis.
In honor of real estate mogul
Stephen M. Ross' $100 million
contribution to the Athletic
Department in September 2013,
the new South Campus has been
named the Stephen M. Ross Ath-
letic Campus.
"Mary Sue is one of the most
prolific fundraisers I've ever
seen," Brandon said. "But the
reasons for that aren't necessar-
ily visible to a lot of folks ... The
donors know she delivers on her
promises, is a good steward of
resources and cares very much
about quality and doing things
the rightway."
Even when the Athletic
Department- namely, the Mich-
igan football team and former
coach Rich Rodriguez - ran into
trouble with NCAA violations,
Coleman remained a levelhead-
ed, valuable resource to Martin,
and later to Brandon when he
took over in 2010.
"It was always a conversation
of'how can we provide more sup-
port for Rich,' "Martin said.
When the time came to part
ways with Rodriguez, Brandon
said Coleman could not have
handled the situation better.
"She's not a micromanager,"
Brandon said. "She's not a presi-
dent who wants to be a partner in
making decisions relative to ath-
letic programs.... She was a very
easy resource for me to access for

advice and input as I made deci-
As the Athletic Department
continues to innovate in terms of
generating revenue and creating
a sustainable model for future
operations, Coleman continues
to be supportive. The Univer-
sity hosted the Winter Classic in
January and will welcome Real
Madrid and Manchester United
to Michigan Stadium in August
in what's widely expected to
break the record for the highest-
attended soccer game in U.S. his-
"Every time I've gone to her
with those kinds of ideas, she's
been supportive and help-
ful and created excite-
ment," Brandon said.
"For some people,
change comes
really hard.
The safest
thing to do is
what you've
always done."
it all, Cole-
man's prior-
ity has been
the balance
ics and
for all

Brandon cited the Stephen M. sity is unde-
Ross Academic Center, built in niable. As Coleman prepares for
2006, as one of Coleman's key- retirement, she leaves behind an
stone accomplishments in that athletic department with almost
regard. unmatched revenue-generating
Coleman's time watching capability, plans in place for
over Michigan Athletics seems adding the missing pieces to a
to have come full circle. Just as world-class athletic campus and
dealing with a scandal marked the framework for the continued
the beginning of her career at the success of Michigan Athletics
Michigan, the University's per- decades into the future.
manent separation from former "She shepherded this Univer-
football player Brendan Gibbons sity into the 21st century," Madej
in November appears to have said. "Above all else, she under-
marked the end. stood how to be a leader."
But while controversy still
swirls on the surface, Coleman's
impact on athletics atthe Univer-

Univers ityserves
as resource for A2

Though ties are ed Coleman's dedication to con-
necting the University and the city
strengthened, city ina positive way. He said this mis-
sion of furthering collaboration
fears the school will has been improved under Cole-
man compared to past University
overpower the area presidents.
"In the last 12 or 14 years, we've
By EMMA KERR been able to engage the University
who has this position to agreater extent in working with
things like technology transfer
The major overhaul in local work that is happening at the Uni-
leadership, both in the city of versity and transferring that work
Ann Arbor and in the University, to the private sector and to com-
marks a new chapter in the city of panies that provide jobs for people
Ann Arbor's history. and help the local economy," Hief-
The city's expanding job mar- tje said.
ket, one of the cornerstones of However, City Councilmem-
Mayor John Hieftje's (D) leader- ber Sabra Briere (D-Ward 1) has a
ship, and the expanding tech set- different perspective on the city's
tor are to some extent the result of evolving relationship with the
havingtheUniversityas aresource University.
to the city. University President "The distance between Univer-
Mary Sue Coleman made science sity staff and faculty and those of
and technology commercializa- us who are not affiliated with the
tion a focus of her administration, University at this time has grown
one with significant indirect pay- rather than shortened," Briere
offs for Ann Arbor and the region. said.
Throughout their relationship, Briere said despite Coleman's
Hieftje has frequently commend- willingness to engage community

leaders, at the end of the day, the
University acts with its students,
faculty and donors as a priority,
even when those choices have
far reaching negative
effects on Ann Arbor
as a city.
"Imiss the days when
University staff were engaged in
the city itself and affecting out-
comes in the city and help the city
be cutting edge, and that's what I
would really like
to see return,"
she said. rer, /CH/GA
As the University
has expanded under Coleman's '
tenure, Ann Arbor residents and ,1 llc
city officials have felt the effects
of its encroachment into the city. sion. Since the University is a cificallyover time,it's beenvery,
The University has purchased public entity, the school does very significant as far as the
numerous properties within not pay property taxes to the last 12 years, Hieftje said. "The
the city, and a point of tension city for its buildings. The more city has lost 5 percent of its tax
between the two institutions. land the University purchases, income because of the Univer-
Hieftje said he fears that the the more potential revenue it sity. They do a lot of wonderful
city is reaching a tipping point at takes from the city. things for us - they bring a lot
which taxes must be raised as a "We continue, in all other of culture, they help us attract
result of the significant tax base areas, to have a good rela- talent - it's just that practical
loss the city experiences as a tionship with the University, point that you cannot make all
direct result of University expan- because if you look at that spe- of the land un-taxable."


Federal lobbying,
fundraising key
focuses of growing
financial resources
Daily Staff Reporter
Though state and national
economic challenges dogged
much of her tenure, Uni-
versity President Mary Sue
Coleman collaborated with
policymakers, business sec-
tors and private donors to
mitigate funding cuts Uni-
versity funds and avoid large
tuition increases for students.
In 2002, the same year Cole-



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