Douglas Knowlton and Michael Dougherty appointed vice chancellors at MnSCU

Posted: November 16, 2011

Contact: Doug Anderson,, 651-201-1426

Two key appointments complete chancellor’s leadership team

The Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Board of Trustees Wednesday appointed Douglas Knowlton as vice chancellor for academic and student affairs, and Michael Dougherty as vice chancellor for advancement.

Knowlton is president of Dakota State University in Madison, S.D., and Dougherty
is vice president of communications at the Valspar Corp. and president of the Valspar Foundation.

Douglas Knowlton

Douglas Knowlton

“Dr. Knowlton is going to play a key role in ensuring that we provide access to an extraordinary education for all Minnesotans,” Rosenstone said. “He’s a tremendous academic leader and will be a great collaborator with our presidents and business partners.

“Michael Dougherty has enormous passion for the work we do,” Rosenstone said. “He’s smart. He’s talented, and he brings a wide range of experience and expertise to this position. He will help us convey to the people of Minnesota the great contributions made by our faculty and staff throughout the state.”

Trustee Clarence Hightower, chair of the board’s human resources committee, said: “Both of these candidates are a good fit and will bring tremendous value to our colleges and universities. They are proven leaders with strong track records.”

Before taking his current position in 2004, Knowlton was vice chancellor for academic affairs and a tenured professor at the University of Minnesota, Crookston; chair of special education and the Department of Teaching and Learning and associate professor of special education at the University of North Dakota; a faculty member at the University of North Dakota’s Conflict Resolution Center; director of child evaluation and treatment at the University of North Dakota Medical Center Rehabilitation Hospital; and a consulting psychologist at the Minnesota Health Department. He also has served on what was the Minnesota State Board of Technical Colleges and the Minnesota Higher Education Board before the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities began operations in 1995.

Knowlton holds a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Denver; and a master's degree in psychology and a Ph.D. in clinical psychology, both from the University of North Dakota, Grand Forks.

“I am extremely honored and excited to have this opportunity to help further the mission of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities and to work with Chancellor Rosenstone,” Knowlton said.

Knowlton’s appointment will take effect Feb. 13. He will succeed Larry Litecky, who has been interim vice chancellor for academic and student affairs.

Michael Dougherty

Michael Dougherty

Prior to Valspar, Dougherty held a variety of positions at 3M, including director of global communications; managing director of the company’s subsidiary in Sweden; communications manager of special material markets, and automotive and chemical markets groups; manager of environmental and regulatory affairs and investor relations counselor. Prior to 3M, he served as vice president of policy and legislation and vice president of operations at the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce; was acting deputy assistant secretary for legislation at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; and manager of government relations and legislative assistant at the Pillsbury Co.

Dougherty holds a bachelor's degree in speech and communications, and a master's degree in public affairs, both from the University of Minnesota, and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of St. Thomas.

In accepting the appointment, Dougherty said: “Thank you for your confidence in me. I have great confidence in our collective ability to strengthen MnSCU and want to contribute to advancing higher education in Minnesota. I have been inspired by Chancellor Rosenstone’s vision. I’m energized and look forward to working with all of you and our 31 academic institutions as we continue our support for the people of Minnesota.”

Dougherty’s appointment takes effect Dec. 12. He will succeed Bernie Omann, interim leader of the advancement unit.

High resolution photo of Michael Dougherty

High resolution photo of Douglas Knowlton