Chancellor Kristensen selected as national Forward50 member; Will address higher education policy

KEARNEY – University of Nebraska at Kearney Chancellor Doug Kristensen is one of the inaugural “Forward50” – or Higher Education Committee of 50 – announced Monday by the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators.

The forward-thinking group is a national committee of college presidents, members of governing boards, enrollment managers, admissions staff, financial aid and bursar leaders, students and other leaders from all sectors of postsecondary institutions. It will spend the next year examining policy areas related to access, affordability, accountability and transparency.

“I first became interested in higher education issues as a Nebraska State Senator,” Kristensen said. “I saw the huge impact a state university can have on the citizens of the state, and I became intrigued by the balance of state investment, through appropriations, and contributions of families, through tuition.”

The 50 leaders come from different institutional areas. The Forward50 will produce four white papers that will include practical recommendations for members of Congress, and will be available to the broader policy community for review and comment in fall 2018.

“Watching the influence of, and outcomes produced by, our university confirmed my belief in the power and importance of higher education,” Kristensen said. “I left my profession as an attorney to work full time in the higher education arena. Despite the challenges that I face in my role as chancellor, I have not regretted for even one day my decision to change careers from law to working for the University of Nebraska.”

The project was prompted during the Higher Education Act reauthorization process, and led by the Student Financial Aid Administrators Association.

“What all of these members have in common is the ability to think about how student aid can meet the needs of today’s and tomorrow’s students,” said NASFAA President Justin Draeger. “Change is never easy, but this forward-thinking group is up to the task. We look forward to seeing the creative, transformative solutions they produce, all with an eye toward student equity, success, accountability and transparency.”

Members of Forward50 bring with them a diverse set of experiences, expertise and perspectives. Together they hold memberships in more than 140 other higher education-related professional associations, with many serving in current or past leadership roles.


View the full list of Forward50 members HERE

Doug Kristensen

“I have not regretted for even one day my decision to change careers from law to working for the University of Nebraska.”Leadership roles with professional associations
Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA): Current President’s Council, President
National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA): Task Force on Eligibility for Division II
Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC): President’s Council
Nebraska Information Technology Commission (NITC): Commissioner
Nebraska Continuing Legal Education, Inc.: Board of Directors

Memberships held with other professional associations
American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU)
American Council on Education (ACE)
Nebraska County Attorneys Association
Nebraska Young Lawyers
University of Nebraska President’s Council
United States Supreme Court Bar
Nebraska State Bar Association (NSBA)
10th Judicial District President Alternative Dispute Resolution
2000 Project Legislative Committee
United States District Court-District of Nebraska
Iowa Bar Association
Nebraska County Attorneys Legislative Committee
National District Attorneys Association
Minden, NE, Child Abuse and Neglect Coalition


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