Nixon appoints two new members to Board of Curators

The new appointees will replace two members who retired at the Dec. 12 meeting.

Portrait of Mary Nelson. Courtesy of Gov. Jay Nixon's Office

Gov. Jay Nixon appointed two new members to the UM System Board of Curators on Friday.

The appointees, Maurice Graham (D-Clayton) and Phillip Snowden (D-Kansas City), were tapped to replace outgoing curators Don Downing and David Bradley.

“These individuals are distinguished alumni of the University of Missouri who have given great service to their state, their communities and their alma mater for many decades,” Nixon said in a news release on Friday. “They will make outstanding curators for the university system.”

Graham received his law degree from MU and his bachelor’s degree from Central Methodist University. He is currently president of the Gray, Ritter and Graham law firm, and previously served on the Central Methodist University Board of Curators and as a trustee of the MU Jefferson Club.

Graham was chairman of the MU School of Law’s $17 million endowment campaign.

Snowden received his undergraduate and law degrees from MU, and played in the 1960 Orange Bowl game as quarterback for Missouri. He currently serves on MU’s Economic Department Leaders Board, which promotes and raises funds for the economics department.

Snowden served in the Missouri General Assembly for 18 years beginning in 1967 — 10 years in the House of Representatives and 8 years in Senate. He has also practiced law and developed real estate.

Nixon had previously appointed Mary Nelson (D-St. Louis) as a new curator on Dec. 26 to replace Wayne Goode, who also retired at the Dec. 12 board meeting.

Nelson obtained her undergraduate degree from Princeton University and received a law degree from MU. She currently serves as general counsel and chief legal officer for the St. Louis Community College District and previously served as a commissioner for the Administrative Hearing Commission.

“Mary is a distinguished alumna of the University of Missouri School of Law, who has served her state and her community for decades,” Nixon said in a news release on Dec. 26. “She will make an outstanding curator for the University system.”

The candidates were appointed for terms ending Jan. 1, 2021. The appointments must be approved by the Missouri Senate, which begins legislative sessions Jan. 7.

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