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William Stephan
University Relations

Last modified: Thursday, June 10, 2004

Indiana University to seek new leader for advocacy organization Hoosiers for Higher Education

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University will begin a search for a new director for Hoosiers for Higher Education, its statewide organization devoted to promoting matters of interest and concern among Indiana's universities.

HHE Director Kirk White serves as a member of the Indiana Army National Guard and has been called to active duty for service with the 76th Infantry Brigade, which will soon be deployed to Afghanistan. White joined the National Guard in 1989 and holds the rank of major in the field artillery. He has led HHE since 2000.

Thomas C. Healy, IU vice president for government relations, soon will begin a search for a new HHE director. In the meantime, current HHE staff will be assisted by members of the university relations and government relations teams.

HHE is a statewide organization of more than 11,000 alumni, students, parents and friends of IU dedicated to promoting higher education in Indiana. As part of their efforts, members of the group attend forums and communicate with elected officials. HHE gathers in Indianapolis annually to meet with and thank elected officials for their support of the state's colleges and universities.

"University policy generously allows for me to take a non-paid extended leave of absence for military service and return to my current duties and position," White said. "However, with the extended leave, I have suggested that Vice President Healy select a new HHE director to assure that IU is poised for success in the 2005 session of the Indiana General Assembly, where the 2005-07 biennial budget will be decided."

"On behalf of the members of HHE, its staff and Indiana University, I want to thank Kirk for his leadership of this great organization over the past four years. His commitment to IU is exceeded only by his commitment to his family and our nation, as exemplified by his willingness to participate in the war on terrorism," Healy said. "We look forward to his safe return home and to IU."

White, who also is special assistant for external relations, has served as a liaison from IU to the community. Upon his return from active duty, he will resume his community relations activities in the Office of the Vice President for University Relations and take on new duties in IU's enhanced efforts in statewide university relations and corporate partnerships.

"Serving with the volunteers and staff of Hoosiers for Higher Education has been the most rewarding and enjoyable part of my career at Indiana University," White said. "HHE has reached new levels of success with legislative activities and communication of the higher education message in our state.

"I am grateful for IU's supportive military leave policy which will provide for me to return to the campus once my U.S. Army service is completed," he added. "My family and I are especially thankful for the overwhelming support from our friends and IU family during my deployment."