University of Pittsburgh
October 12, 2000


Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH, Oct. 12 - The Nominating Committee of the University of Pittsburgh Board of Trustees today nominated five candidates for membership on the Board. Those nominated include a former Pennsylvania governor and United States attorney general, two active Pittsburgh CEOs, the recently retired head of a major American research university, and a pioneer in the field of biotechnology. Nominating Committee Chair Robert G. Lovett noted that the full board will act on the nominations at its meeting on Thursday, October 26.

Nominated are Steven C. Beering, who recently retired as president of Purdue University; Herbert W. Boyer, co-founder of Genentech, Inc.; William R. Johnson, chairman, president and CEO of H.J. Heinz Company; George L. Miles, Jr., president and CEO of WQED Pittsburgh, and the Hon. Dick Thornburgh, former Pennsylvania governor and United States attorney general.

"We are honored that such distinguished individuals have agreed to join the University's Board of Trustees. The talents, experience, and expertise which they bring will prove invaluable to the University in the months and years ahead, and their willingness to join us is further testimony to the success of our efforts to reach even higher levels of excellence in all that we do," Pitt Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg said.

Steven Beering earned both his undergraduate and medical degrees from the University of Pittsburgh. His ties to the university are long-standing. He delivered the 1998 commencement address and is the recipient of the University's Bicentennial Medallion of Distinction, the Distinguished Alumni Fellows Award, and the Hench Distinguished Alumnus Award from the Medical Alumni Association.

A specialist in endocrinology and metabolism, as well as medical education and administration, Dr. Beering completed post-graduate work at Johns Hopkins University, the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, the University of Chicago, the University of Washington, and the School of Aerospace Medicine in San Antonio. He has served as dean and CEO of the University of Indiana/Purdue Medical Center in Indianapolis. He is a past chair of both the Association of American Universities and the Association of American Medical Colleges, and a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences.

After receiving his bachelor's degree in biology and chemistry from

St. Vincent's College in Latrobe, Herbert Boyer studied bacteriology at Pitt, earning a Ph.D. in 1963. After three years at Yale University as a postdoctoral fellow in microbial genetics, Boyer accepted a teaching and research position at the University of California Medical Center in San Francisco.

In the early 1970s, Boyer and geneticist Stanley Cohen launched a new scientific field called recombinant DNA technology, or gene splicing. Genentech was founded in 1976, by Boyer and venture capitalist Robert A. Swanson. Headquartered in San Francisco, the biotechnology company is a leader in using human genetic information to develop, manufacture, and market pharmaceuticals. Boyer remains a director of Genentech and is professor emeritus of biochemistry and biophysics at the University of California at San Francisco.

Boyer has won the Medal of Technology, the National Medal of Science, and the Albert and Mary Lasker Award for Medical Research. Among his many honors and activities, Boyer is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, and is in the California Inventors Hall of Fame.

William Johnson's career includes senior positions at Heinz USA, Heinz Pet Products, Star Kist Foods Inc., and Star Kist Foods and Asia/Pacific Operations. He previously served the University as a University-appointed director of the UPMC Health System and a member of its Executive Committee. A director of H.J. Heinz Company, PNC Bank Corporation, and other corporate boards, he earned a BA in political science at the University of California at Los Angeles and his MBA at the University of Texas at Austin.

George Miles served for 10 years as COO of WNET public television in

New York before assuming his leadership position at WQED in 1994. He has served as vice chair of the Association of American Public Television Stations, and is a director of the Foundation for Minority Interests in the Media. Extremely active in the community, he serves on the boards of the Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh, the Carnegie Science Center, the Urban League of Pittsburgh, the Civic Light Opera, and the Pittsburgh Public Theater. He is a member of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra Board of Advisors and a community director of the UPMC Health System.

Miles was graduated from Seton Hall University with a bachelor's degree in accounting and earned a master's degree in business administration at Fairleigh Dickinson University.

In addition to his service as Pennsylvania's top elected official and the nation's top prosecutor, Dick Thornburgh served as United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Administration and Management and as director of the Institute for Politics at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. He currently is of counsel to the law firm Kirkpatrick & Lockhart LLP.

While governor of Pennsylvania, he served as ex officio trustee of the University of Pittsburgh. In 1998, Thornburgh presented to the University Library System his personal papers; they since have become the foundation of the Library's State and Local Government Archives program.

Thornburgh earned his bachelor's degree in engineering from Yale University and his law degree from the University of Pittsburgh.