Good afternoon, my name is James B. Milliken.
I am president of the University of Nebraska, but I am first a Nebraskan. Five generations of my family have lived in Nebraska. All three of my children were born here, and in a few years may attend college here. I am the first Nebraskan to serve as president of the university in its history. This all may seem like unimportant trivia, but it informs the way I approach my job.
I believe strongly that the University was created and exists today to serve our state – and it has done that extraordinarily well throughout its history. Yes, one of my responsibilities is to secure the state, federal, and private funding necessary to deliver important programs and meet important objectives, and I approach this responsibility with the goal of serving the state.
The University is in a position to serve Nebraska now, in 2007, in a way that no other institution or investment can. Why do I say that? There are certainly other important institutions that are vital to our future. But as a leading research university, the University of Nebraska has a responsibility unique in our state.