Dr. Michael R. Lovell is the 24th president of Marquette University. He began his role as president on July 1, 2014.
As an educator, President Lovell seeks to develop course work and foster a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship for faculty, staff and students. Among his many accomplishments, President Lovell is a recipient of a National Science Foundation CAREER Award, the Society of Manufacturing Engineers Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer Award, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers Burt L. Newkirk Award and the Olympus Emerging Academic Innovator Award. He also was named a State of Wisconsin Distinguished Professor.
President Lovell has laid out several strategic initiatives for his first year as chief executive of Marquette, including filling vacant high-profile university leadership positions with qualified, dynamic individuals; using the university's strategic plan, Beyond Boundaries, as a road map to bolster Marquette’s national academic and research reputation and provide new transformational educational and research opportunities at all levels of Marquette's campus; working closely with the Marquette Jesuit community to honor and preserve the university's Catholic, Jesuit tradition and mission; enhancing Marquette's already-strong student experience to provide a campus experience that is second to none; establishing new relationships and collaborating with key business and thought leaders locally, regionally and nationally to foster innovation and allow Marquette to reach new levels of academic excellence; and providing a transformational educational experience with a foundation in inquiry and pursuit of lifelong learning, descended from the Jesuits’ early curriculum grounded in the arts and sciences.
A distinguished scholar, researcher, educator and leader, President Lovell holds three academic degrees in mechanical engineering, including a doctorate from the University of Pittsburgh. He has published more than 100 articles in leading engineering journals, has written more than a dozen book chapters, and co-authored a book, Tribology for Scientists and Engineers in 2013. As a researcher, President Lovell has been a lead or co-lead investigator for nearly $30 million in externally funded research grants from foundations, businesses and government agencies, including the National Science Foundation, the Department of Energy, the Department of Defense and the Department of Education. His research has led to several technological breakthroughs, and he holds seven patents and 14 provisional patents. In March 2014, President Lovell was formally inducted into the National Academy of Inventors.
Immediately before assuming the Marquette presidency, President Lovell served as chancellor of the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee from 2011 to 2014. As chancellor, he oversaw the UW–Milwaukee Initiative — the university’s landmark $240 million capital construction and renovation program, including its 89-acre Innovation Campus in Wauwatosa; the expansion of its School of Freshwater Sciences; the first phase of the Kenwood Interdisciplinary Research Complex; and the Northwest Quadrangle Redevelopment Plan. Also as chancellor, he helped establish the App Brewery and launch the Student Start-Up Challenge, leading to UWM being selected as one of only 12 institutions nationally for the prestigious National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance Pathways to Innovation Program. Additionally, he opened the Zilber School of Public Health’s new academic and research facility and fostered a new sense of entrepreneurship and innovation on campus and in the greater Milwaukee community.
During his time in Milwaukee, President Lovell has been known for establishing powerful partnerships among academic, industrial and nonprofit sectors. In 2009, he co-founded the Mid-West Energy Research Consortium, a partnership among Marquette, UWM, the Milwaukee School of Engineering, the University of Wisconsin–Madison, and numerous regional power and energy companies, including Rockwell Automation, Johnson Controls and We Energies. His partnership with Johnson Controls on energy storage technology development was recognized as best in class nationally (Edison Gold Medal) and locally (Milwaukee Business Journal Eureka Award).
In addition, President Lovell serves on the Board of Directors of the Mid-West Energy Research Consortium, BizStarts Milwaukee, the Center for International Health, the Milwaukee Educational Partnership, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, the Water Council, Scale Up Milwaukee and serves on the executive committee of the Coalition of Urban and Metropolitan Universities. He also serves on the boards of the Big East Conference, the Wisconsin Association of Independent Colleges and Universities, the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities, and the Milwaukee Regional Medical Center. President Lovell serves as co-chairman of the Greater Milwaukee Foundation’s Milwaukee Succeeds initiative, is a member of the Greater Milwaukee Committee and serves as co-chair of Innovation in Milwaukee, a Greater Milwaukee Committee initiative focused on supporting innovation and entrepreneurship.
Previously, President Lovell served for five years as associate dean for research at the University of Pittsburgh’s School of Engineering. He directed two multiuniversity research centers, working with hundreds of faculty members, graduate students and private companies. He has also served as a faculty member at the University of Pittsburgh and the University of Kentucky after starting his career at ANSYS, a firm that develops engineering simulation software.
President Lovell, his wife Amy and their four children are active members of Holy Family Parish in Whitefish Bay, Wis. An ardent sports fan and participant, President Lovell enjoys attending men’s and women’s athletic events and is an avid runner and triathlete.