OGDEN — Nolan Karras was elected chairman of the Weber State University board of trustees at its monthly meeting Tuesday. Trustee Louenda Downs was elected vice chairwoman.
“I am proud to continue my association with my alma mater — an association that dates back to the late 1960s,” Karras said in a statement. “It is an honor to serve as chair of the trustees and further promote all the outstanding work and success happening at Weber State.”
Karras, the CEO and chairman of the Karras Company Inc., a national financial advisory firm, graduated from Weber State College in 1970. He was appointed to the board of trustees in 2013. Karras is also co-chairman of Education First, a statewide, citizen-based political action committee that promotes education. A certified public accountant, Karras was elected to the Utah Legislature from 1981 to 1990, where he served as speaker of the House. He spent 12 years on the Utah Board of Regents and was chairman from 2001 to 2005.
A WSU trustee since 2014, Downs is a former Davis County commissioner and commission chairwoman. She earned her bachelor’s degree from WSU in education with an emphasis in art and music. After teaching elementary-age children in Davis County for seven years, Downs was elected to serve eight years on the Davis Board of Education, and she was a member of the Utah Board of Education State Association Board.
As a trustee, Karras succeeds Alan E. Hall, who had served as chairman of the board since 2010. Hall will remain on the board until his successor is sworn-in at next month’s meeting.
Eight of the university’s 10 trustees are appointed by Gov. Gary Herbert and approved by the Utah Senate before being sworn in. Appointees are eligible to serve two four-year terms.
The student body president and the alumni association president, which are not appointed positions, serve one- and two-year terms respectively.