Thursday, 4:30 PM
Meehan one of three finalists for chancellor at UMass-Lowell
By Globe Staff
US Representative Martin T. Meehan was one of the three finalists named today in the search for the next chancellor of the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, intensifying the jockeying for his seat by Democrats stuck in a stagnant political landscape.
Meehan, 50, a Lowell native who has spent seven terms in office, was joined on the list of finalists by David C. Chang, chancellor of the Polytechnic University, and Nabil A. Ibrahim, the vice chancellor for academic affairs and chief academic officer at Purdue University in Calumet.
"I am honored to be recommended as one of the finalists for the position of Chancellor at the University of Massachusetts Lowell," Meehan said in a statement. "As a proud alumnus of the University, any success I have had in my career I owe to the strong foundation I received at UMass Lowell."
The Globe reported last month that Meehan had emerged on the short list of candidates. His departure would set off a political stampede and create the first competitive fight for a Bay State congressional district in more than five years.
Eager candidates wasted no time positioning themselves for a run for the seat. State Representative Jamie Eldridge, a Democrat from Acton, announced today that he created an exploratory committee to facilitate a run for Congress if Meehan gets the chancellor's job.
Meehan became the new chairman of the House Armed Services Committee's subcommittee on oversight and investigations when Democrats took control of Congress last month. He is currently in Iraq leading a fact-finding trip that could be the groundwork for investigations and hearings into the war.
Meehan saw one of his political ambitions fade last month, when John F. Kerry dropped out of the 2008 presidential race and announced he would seek reelection to his Senate seat.
UMass President Jack M. Wilson will choose among the three finalists. His selection must be approved by the university's Board of Trustees.
A spokeswoman for UMass-Lowell said officials hope that Wilson will make his choice in time for the board to vote during its next meeting on March 14. All three finalists are expected to make visits to campus in the coming weeks.