MILWAUKEE — Former UW-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank will not serve as the incoming president of Northwestern University in the Chicago suburbs after she was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer.
Northwestern said in a statement Blank plans to focus on her health for the foreseeable future.
Blank was set to become the first female president of Northwestern University.
Northwestern announced in October of 2021 that Blank would succeed Morton Schapiro as its 17th president beginning summer of 2022.
The school's board has asked Schapiro to stay in his role as president until a successor is chosen.
Blank served as chancellor at Wisconsin since 2013. She is an internationally known economist who served as deputy secretary and acting commerce secretary during the Obama administration.
Coming to Northwestern is a homecoming of sorts for Blank, who was married in Chicago, has served on the faculty at the school in Evanston, Illinois, and has a daughter who attended the school.