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Former President, Illinois State University; Former President, West Virginia University; and Former Chancellor, University of Kansas
Gene Budig served as President of the American League for six years (1994-2000) and oversaw the operations of 14 clubs and the construction of $2.2 billion worth of new ballparks. He was a Senior Adviser to Major League Baseball for three years (2000-2003). MLB is a $4.4 billion a year enterprise. He served as a Scholar in Residence at the College Board from 2002 to 2005, and was a member of the faculty at Princeton University during the 2000-2001 and 2001-2002 school years. He is now College Board Professor and Senior Presidential Advisor.
He authored a book on the economics of baseball, The Inside Pitch, And More, for the West Virginia University Press in 2004. He wrote another book on leading the modern college and university, A Game of Uncommon Skill, for the American Council on Education Series on Higher Education in 2002. He chairs College Ed, a national program funded by the Gates Foundation, which is designed to increase college attendance by 15 to 18 percent. He is a member of the National Commission on Writing in America's Schools and Colleges.
Budig has headed three major state universities, each with enrollments of more than 22,000 students. The institutions were Illinois State University, West Virginia University, and the University of Kansas. He was a Professor of Higher Education Finance at ISU, WVU, KU, and the University of Nebraska. Over a period of 23 years he was responsible for the educational programs of 520,000 students.
Budig oversaw the administration of $8.1 billion in educational funds, both public and private.
He is a retired Major General, Air National Guard/United States Air Force. His last assignment was Assistant to the Chief, National Guard Bureau, and the Army and Air National Guard had components at the time in all 50 states and 573,000 members and an annual operational budget of nearly $9 billion.
He was appointed Chief of Staff for the Governor of Nebraska, serving three years early in his career (1964-67).
Budig had responsibility for 7,500 faculty and staff at ISU, 10,500 faculty and staff at WVU, and 12,500 faculty and staff at KU. He led these universities in long-range planning initiatives designed to enhance the learning experience of students. He was one of five executives named to establish a long-term business plan for Major League Baseball, a plan that produced record attendance of more than 72 million fans.
He served on the Executive Committee of the Kansas University Endowment Association during his 13 years as Chancellor (1981 to 1994) and the Association built an endowment of more than $1 billion. He played a central role in raising funds and determining allocations to a wide array of educational programs.
He was recognized as one who could raise large amounts of private money for the public good at state universities. He headed successful fund drives at WVU and KU. He played a leadership role in Major League Baseball Charities, especially as it related to the creation of education and recreation programs in the major cities.
Budig has written essays for the Kansas City Star, New York Times, Omaha World-Herald, and USA TODAY. The Associated Press has carried reports of his studies on gubernatorial views in the 1960s and 1970s, and he has authored more than 70 articles for academic journals.