Doug Browning nominated as next Trustees chair


Doug Browning, a 1971 political science graduate of Pitt and principal in the independent consulting company DM Browning & Associates LLC, has been nominated as the next chair of the University’s Board of Trustees.

Doug BrowningThe board’s Governance and Nominating committee voted on Browning for a one-year term at its June 7 meeting. He will still need to be approved by the full board at its June 24 gathering.

The Board of Trustees is in charge of the search for a new chancellor to replace Patrick Gallagher, who plans to step down next year. Gallagher said in April that it was very unlikely the board would begin even putting together a search committee until the trustees nominate and elect a new chair.

One of the board’s vice chairs, Mary Ellen Callahan, has been serving as interim chair since the death of Tom Richards in October 2021, during his second year as chairman.

Browning, who has a law degree from Hofstra University, first joined the Board of Trustees in 2013. He has served on numerous board committees, including Academic Affairs/Libraries; Governance and Nominating; Athletics; Affirmative Action, Diversity, and Inclusion; and Institutional Advancement. He also chairs the University Honor College board of visitors.

He has been recognized by the University with the Baierl Distinguished Alumni Service Award, as well as being named a Legacy Laureate.

“Doug has had a long tenure on the board, has served on many different committees, has given much of his time, much of his intellect … to the University and I am certain that Doug will be a remarkable board chair,” said Louis Cestello, outgoing chair of the committee and vice chair of the trustees.

Browning served for more than 28 years with the U.S. Customs Service and its successor agency, U.S. Customs and Border Protection. He ended his tenure there as deputy commissioner and chief operating officer. He also worked in customs- and trade-related jobs at  General Motors Corp., Sandler Travis Trade Advisory Services and Science Applications International Corp. His current company consults on moving goods and services across international borders.

Other nominations

The committee also selected candidates for election and re-election to Pitt’s Board of Trustees and for re-election to the UPMC Board.

Recommended for election to Pitt board:

  • David C. Frederick: Partner, Kellogg, Hansen, Todd, Figel & Frederick PLLC, Special trustee

  • Jeffrey D. Martchek: Former president of Homebuilding Operations, NVR, Inc. Special trustee

  • Valerie Njie: Former executive director and senior vice president, Bidwell Training Center, and outgoing president, Pitt Alumni Association. Alumni trustee

  • Dawne S. Hickton: Executive vice president and COO, Critical Mission Solutions. Term trustee (previously served as a Pitt trustee)

  • Eva T. Blum: Former executive vice president and director of community affairs of PNC Bank, and former chair and president of the PNC Foundation. Term trustee (former chair of Pitt’s board)

Recommended for re-election to Pitt board:

  • Vaughn S. Clagette: Physician, Southeast Permanente Medical Group. Term trustee

  • James “Jimbo” Covert: Operating partner, Cressey & Company. Member, Pro Football Hall of Fame. Term trustee

  • Gary T. Brownlee: Advisor at Indiana Small Business Development Center at Purdue University. Alumni trustee

  • David J. Morehouse: former chief executive officer and president of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Special trustee

  • SaLisa L. Berrien: Founder and chief executive officer of COI Energy. Term trustee

Recommended for re-election to UPMC board:

Browning was nominated for first vice chair of the hospital board, and Clagette, Covert and John J. Verbanac, president and CEO of Summa Development, were nominated for re-election.

Susan Jones is editor of the University Times. Reach her at or 724-244-4042.


Have a story idea or news to share? Share it with the University Times.

Follow the University Times on Twitter and Facebook.