In addition to overseeing an entire university, SUU President Michael T. Benson volunteers his time and expertise in many capacities – giving back to the communities and causes that support SUU and higher education. It is this commitment to education that qualifies Benson for his latest appointment as the newest member to the Utah Humanities Council (UHC) Board of Directors.
According to Cynthia Buckingham, executive director of the UHC, Benson was selected to this post for his ability to contribute in various areas. “President Benson is a proven leader in the community as well as on SUU’s campus. We feel his academic background in the humanities as well as his current endeavor to seek a degree in nonprofit management will contribute greatly to the UHC,” she says.
Buckingham also anticipates Benson will “help in expanding UHC’s presence in Iron County.”
To this, Benson asserts, “I firmly believe the humanities are an integral part of the fabric of our state and I pledge to do whatever I can to help promote their growth and vitality.”
The Utah Humanities Council is a nonprofit educational and cultural organization that serves the entire state of Utah, promoting the understanding of diverse traditions, values and ideas through informed public discussions.
The Board of Directors is the decision-making body for the Council and is legally responsible for the finances and operations of the UHC, including organizational planning and evaluation, developing resources for the council and determining policy. In its members, the Board seeks representation from institutions of higher learning, academic disciplines within the humanities, a broad spread of geographic representation, a track record of community involvement, and varied social and cultural perspectives.
Based on his diverse experience in higher education as first a student and now an administrator, Benson should prove a good fit. In his new capacity as a member of the Board, Benson will join 22 additional volunteer board members in a three-year service term.
Looking forward to his new responsibilities and anticipating the impact he hopes to make, Benson said, “As a product of a home and upbringing that emphasized what some may call peripheral interests – art, music, literature, poetry – I have come to appreciate more and more the irreplaceable role of these elements in our society. It is my hope that I might bring something of value to this organization as a thank you for what the humanities have meant to me in my life and world perspective.”
In yet another of his dignified endeavors, Southern Utah University is proud to support President Michael T. Benson.