Richard D. Fain Named Chair of UM’s Board of Trustees

Outgoing UM Board of Trustees Chair Stuart A. Miller, left, passes the gavel of leadership to Richard D. Fain at Friday's BOT meeting.
By UM News

Outgoing UM Board of Trustees Chair Stuart A. Miller, left, passes the gavel of leadership to Richard D. Fain at Friday's BOT meeting.

Richard D. Fain Named Chair of UM’s Board of Trustees

By UM News
Hilarie Bass reinstalled as vice chair, H.T. Smith named vice chair, and Noor Joudi appointed student trustee.

Richard D. Fain, chairman and chief executive officer of Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd., has been named the new chair of the University of Miami’s Board of Trustees, beginning a two-year term for the body responsible for governing one of the top private research institutions in the nation.

Fain, who had served as vice chair of UM’s Board of Trustees since 2014, succeeds Stuart A. Miller as chair. He was elected to his new post on Friday during a BOT meeting at which UM School of Law alumna Hilarie Bass was reinstalled as vice chair, prominent Miami attorney H.T. Smith was elected as a new vice chair, and Noor Joudi was named student trustee.

A UM trustee since 1997, Fain chaired the presidential search committee that named Julio Frenk UM’s sixth president last year. He currently serves on the board’s Executive Committee and also chairs the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science’s Visiting Committee.

“I had the opportunity to work closely with Richard Fain in his role as chair of the Presidential Search Committee that brought me on board,” said President Frenk, “and I look forward to working even closer with him as he assumes his new leadership responsibilities.”

Fain became Royal Caribbean’s chairman and CEO in 1988. Royal Caribbean’s partnership with the Rosenstiel School fully funds the scientific research program on the cruise line’s Explorer of the Seas, the first ever cruise ship outfitted with ocean and atmospheric science laboratories.

Fain has also generously donated to the Rosenstiel School’s Scientific Dive Center and the UM Hillel building campaign fund.

A co-chair of the United Way Campaign, he is a member of the National Conference for Community and Justice and serves on the World Wildlife Fund’s National Council, the Posse Foundation, and the Florida Council of 100. Among his distinguished awards and honors are winning the Ultimate CEO Award from the South Florida Business Journal, the Ellis Island Medal of Honor from the National Ethnic Coalition Organization, and the French Legion of Honor.

Fain received his bachelor’s in economics from the University of California at Berkeley in 1969 and his M.B.A. from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in 1972.

Outgoing UM Board Chair Stuart Miller, J.D. ’82, has served as a trustee since 2002 and was appointed chair in 2014. Miller is a legacy trustee who followed in his family’s footsteps, which are deeply rooted at the University. His late father, Leonard M. Miller, served as chair of UM’s Board of Trustees from 1995-99 and was active on the Board until his death in 2002.

“I am very grateful to Stuart Miller for his guidance and friendship during my transition into the presidency and for his tireless advocacy, relentless enthusiasm, and generous support of this University and our community,” said President Frenk.

An innovative and renowned business leader whose family has had an indelible impact on UM, Miller is chief executive officer and a director of Lennar Corporation, one of the nation’s largest homebuilders. He served as the Miller School of Medicine’s chair of Momentum2: The Breakthrough Campaign for the University of Miami and is the standard-bearer of his family’s outstanding tradition of generosity and commitment to UM. With a landmark gift of $100 million in 2004, the largest gift from a family in the University’s history at the time, UM’s School of Medicine was renamed the Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine in his father’s honor. In 2014, The Lennar Foundation, the charitable arm of The Lennar Corporation, gave a lead gift of $50 million to name the UHealth ambulatory center, which will open in Fall 2016 as UHealth Coral Gables in The Lennar Foundation Medical Center.  

The Miller family’s long-standing commitments have also extended to the enrichment of Judaic culture and studies through the Sue and Leonard Miller Center for Contemporary Judaic Studies and a naming gift to build the new Braman Miller Center for Jewish Student Life at UM Hillel. Stuart Miller is also a generous supporter of the UM School of Law and Hurricane Athletics.

Vice Chairs

Hilarie Bass, J.D. ’81, has served as a trustee since 2003 and was elected vice chair in 2014. She also served on the Presidential Search Committee to select UM’s sixth president in 2015. Bass is co-president of the international law firm Greenberg Traurig, LLP., and has completed an eight-year term as the national chair of the firm’s 600-member litigation department and serves on its Executive Committee. In 2014, the UM School of Law’s popular courtyard was renamed the “Hilarie Bass Bricks” in her honor after a commitment of $1 million. Bass also served as a member of the School of Law’s Visiting Committee and was co-chair of its Momentum2 Campaign Committee as well as the School of Education and Human Development’s campaign chair.

H.T. Smith, J.D. ’73, founded H.T. Smith, P.A., a private law firm specializing in personal injury, civil rights, and criminal defense, in 1981. A trustee since 2004, he is a former chair of the Student Affairs Committee, co-chair of the Professor Robert H. Waters Memorial Fund at the School of Law, and serves on the law school’s Visiting Committee and on the board’s Audit and Compliance Committee. He received the UM School of Law Center for Ethics in Public Service Lawyers in Leadership Award in 2003 and the UM Law Alumni Association Henry Latimer Professionalism Award in 2007.

Student Trustee

Noor Joudi is the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine President for 2016-17. An M.D. candidate in the Class of 2018, she received a bachelor’s of science degree in biology, summa cum laude, in 2015.