Jim Applegate, vice president for academic affairs at the state Council on Postsecondary Education, has been named senior vice president of the Lumina Foundation on Education in Indianapolis.
His appointment is effective Oct. 1.
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Lumina, which has assets of $1.5 billion, is one of the nation's few major foundations devoted to issues involving low-income, minority and adult learners.
"It's a perfect job for Jim," said Lee Nimocks, the council's chief of staff. "He is such an evangelist on those issues."
Lumina has awarded more than $300 million in grants to higher-education projects.
The CPE is currently searching for a permanent president. Richard Crofts, former head of higher education in Montana and Mississippi, is the interim president.
Nimocks said the CPE probably will appoint an interim vice president for academic affairs and make a permanent appointment after the new president is chosen. The search is expected to take until at least the end of this year, perhaps somewhat longer.
At the council, Applegate is credited with obtaining more than $32 million in outside funding to improve students' access to and success in college; leading work on closing more than 200 academic programs and restructuring more than 400 others to increase degree production; and leading and working with several programs for minority, low-income and adult learners.
In the last year, Applegate was a finalist to head the higher-education systems of Ohio and Maine, but he withdrew from both searches.
Applegate, 57, came to the council in 1999from the University of Kentucky, where was a chairman and professor in the department of communications.
A native of West Point in Hardin County, Applegate has a bachelor's degree from Georgetown College and a master's degree and a doctorate from the University of Illinois.