Bringing the expertise gleaned from a successful career in the entertainment business –– and a passionate dedication to the university her children attended –– Emmy-winning television producer Marcy Carsey has been named chair of the UC Santa Barbara Foundation Board of Trustees.
“Coming from parents who were proud and relieved to be able to afford a public education, I know the importance of preserving an affordable education for generations to come,” Carsey said in accepting the role she will assume on July 1.
From the foundation’s inception in 1973, members of its board have formed a valuable link between UC Santa Barbara and communities local, regional and national, by promoting the campus profile and encouraging private gifts to the university.
Carsey has been named one of the 50 greatest women in radio and television, and recognized as one of the most successful American businesswomen in or out of show business. With partner Tom Werner, she co-founded one of the most successful independent studios in television history, Carsey Werner Company, whose hits include The Cosby Show, Roseanne, 3rd Rock from the Sun, That ‘70s Show and Grace Under Fire. The company also teamed with Oprah Winfrey, and former Nickelodeon chief Geraldine Laybourne, to create cable network and multimedia company Oxygen.
Inducted into the halls of fame of both the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences and Broadcasting and Cable Magazine, Carsey has received the Emmy Award, the Peabody Award, the Humanitas Prize, the NAACP Image Award, the David Susskind Lifetime Achievement Award from the Producer’s Guild of America, the Publicists Guild’s Showman of the Year Award and the Lucy Award from Women In Film.
A 14-year member of the UC Santa Barbara Foundation, Carsey also sits on the advisory board for UCSB’s Carsey-Wolf Center for Film, Television, and New Media, named for her and fellow producer Dick Wolf, as benefactors.
“We are honored and thrilled that Marcy Carsey has graciously agreed to take the helm of our UC Santa Barbara Foundation Board of Trustees,” Chancellor Henry Yang said. “Marcy has been a dedicated trustee since 1999, and is a founder, advisory board member, and generous supporter of our Carsey-Wolf Center. We are profoundly grateful for her leadership, vision, and guidance, and for the inspiration she provides to our students and our entire campus community.
“I would also like to take this opportunity to express my sincere appreciation for the exemplary leadership of current chair Bruce G. Wilcox, under whose guidance the foundation has flourished, launching the second phase of the Campaign for UC Santa Barbara and fostering critical philanthropic support for university programs.”
Wilcox, a trustee since 2003, welcomed Carsey to the role.
“I am extremely gratified that Marcy has accepted the chair of the UC Santa Barbara Foundation Board,” he said. “She has not only been personally generous to UC Santa Barbara, but has been very effective in attracting other significant donors to fund high-impact campus initiatives. Her commitment, charisma, and accomplishments make her an ideal leader as the foundation pursues ever-growing campaign goals.”
In addition to her leadership gift for the Carsey-Wolf Center, Carsey’s philanthropic support of the campus has included the “Critical Issues in America” program in the College of Letters & Science, which each year examines a specific social issue through public lectures, panel discussions, and undergraduate courses. She is an Honorary Alumna of UCSB, and her two children are UCSB graduates. Carsey is a native of Weymouth, Mass., and a cum laude graduate in English literature from the University of New Hampshire.
“It is monumental to have Marcy Carsey as our next chair of the board,” said Beverly Colgate, executive director of the UCSB Foundation. “She has been an active trustee and champion for the university, transforming many areas of the campus through her consistent support and advocacy. Her strong belief in ensuring affordable access to higher education for all eligible students has been a core motivator for her involvement and support of public universities and for UC Santa Barbara. We embrace her exceptional business experience and uplifting sense of humor. I am truly looking forward to working with her.”