Young names new cabinet member

By and

U President Michael Young has appointed Kim Wirthlin as vice president for government relations and associate vice president for marketing and communications at the Health Sciences Center on Wednesday.

The U’s Assistant Vice President for Government Relations Nancy Lyon will continue her role and coordinate with Wirthlin in future legislative tasks.

“[Nancy’s] roll as assistant vice president will be the same,” Wirthlin said. “We’ll work together on achieving the goals of the university.”

Wirthlin has worked with the Legislature for the past eight years in her current role as the chief legislative and public relations liaison for health sciences.

“We have had terrific success on getting appropriations as well as strong success on important health policy issues in the past,” Wirthlin said.

Pending a Board of Trustees approval, she will serve in a broader role, addressing legislative relations encompassing all areas of campus.

Young said Wirthlin’s success in her previous role was one of the driving forces behind the selection.

“Kim has impressive credentials and a proven track record in both government and public affairs,” Young said in a news release. “In both arenas she has worked well with lawmakers, policymakers, and the public on critical health-care issues. We look forward to building on the positive relationships that exist and enhancing public trust in the university.”

Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Lorris Betz said Wirthlin possesses necessary qualities in both leadership and experience to develop the Health Sciences Center.

“As the scope of the Health Sciences Center’s mission grows, we need someone to strategically coordinate how we market and communicate our services in education, research and patient care,” Betz said in a news release. “I can’t think of anyone better qualified to fill that role than Kim Wirthlin.”

Wirthlin said she was enthusiastic about her new responsibilities.

“I think that in both roles there will be real synergy between the health sciences and main campus,” she said.

Wirthlin added that her position will help get “clear messages to audiences and constituencies” and help people know of services the U provides so they can easily access them.

“Then on the government relations side, what it brings is the rest of the university working directly with the president on the legislative agenda,” she said. “It demonstrates the priority President Young has in working with the Legislature.”

Young had similar goals in establishing the positions.

“This new cabinet post will streamline our campus-wide government affairs efforts under one roof and demonstrates the importance our institution places on legislative relationships on the state and federal levels,” Young said.

[email protected]