A member of the Penn State board of trustees will be stepping down next week.
Chairman Keith Masser sent an email to trustees around 8 p.m. Friday, announcing that Karen Peetz was resigning with 18 months left in her term. The resignation will go into effect at the end of the day on Thursday, the first day of the two-day trustee sessions for January.
“As her last official act, Karen has agreed to chair the Audit and Risk Committee,” Masser wrote.
Peetz’s other official acts included chairing the board in 2012, a year when national attention was spotlighted on the university as it dealt with the fallout from the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse arrest and conviction and the levying of historic NCAA sanctions against Penn State after the release of the board-commissioned Freeh investigation.
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It is the second time Peetz has issued a resignation to the board. In December 2012, she stepped down as chairman as she moved up the corporate ladder to take the reins as president of Bank of New York Mellon in January 2013. She said at that time that she would at least fulfill that term, which expired in 2013. She did, however, accept another term as a business and industry representative to the board.
That term is set to run out in June 2016.
“Pursuant to the bylaws, I have appointed Ira Lubert to fill Karen’s unexpired term,” Masser wrote.
Lubert, who will also take over Peetz’s position as audit and risk committee chairman, has previously served on the board twice, 1997-2000 and 2007-2013. Masser told trustees Lubert will be present to take his seat at the full board public meeting Jan 16.
“We owe Karen a great debt of gratitude for her service and her counsel,” Masser wrote. “While not a long-standing member of the board, Karen stepped up, at great personal sacrifice, when the university needed strong leadership. She not only oversaw a number of actions that strengthened our institution for the future, but also served as chair of our presidential selection council that brought us Dr. Barron.”
Peetz graduated from Penn State in 1977 with a degree in health and human development. She was honored as an Alumni Fellow by the Penn State Alumni Association in 2007 and as a Penn State Distinguished Alumna in 2010.
Lubert received those same awards in 1995 and 2006.
Lubert has more than 40 years of experience in the real estate and private equity areas.
“Ira has always been a tremendous asset to Penn State, bringing a wealth of knowledge and leadership skills to the table, as well as his business acumen and exceptional ability to build relationships. I believe his expertise, guidance and insight on a variety of matters will clearly strengthen our board and serve Penn State and its community well,” Masser said in a statement.