Phil Collins elected chair of UC’s Board of Trustees

With completion of Kim Heiman’s term as chair, Phil Collins has been elected UC’s new board chair

Phil Collins was unanimously elected chair for the next year during the Dec. 14, 2022, UC Board of Trustees meeting. Kim Heiman will serve as vice chair, and Jill McGruder will serve as secretary. 

Their terms in these new roles began Jan. 1, 2023. In his new role as chair, Collins replaces Heiman, who completed a year of service as chair. 

During Heiman’s tenure, UC:

  • Welcomed its largest-ever first-year class and enjoyed overall record-setting enrollment, which now stands at 47,914 — including the inaugural cohort of Marian Spencer Scholars.
  • Set records for diversity, with students of color representing 25.5% of the student body, including 4,251 international students from 121 countries.
  • Opened the Digital Futures building as part of the Cincinnati Innovation District.
  • Celebrated a record $551 million in external research funding.

New Board Chair: Phil D. Collins

Phil Collins, chair of the UC Board of Trustees

Phil Collins, chair of the UC Board of Trustees

Phil Collins is founder and CEO of Orchard Holdings Group, a private equity investment firm.

“It is an honor to serve in this role during such an exciting period of growth and momentum," said Collins. "I am grateful for the tremendous leadership of President Pinto and his team, and look forward to continuing to work with our great group of dedicated Trustees.”

Prior to founding Orchard, Collins was a partner and spent 10 years at a private equity firm in New York City and Menlo Park, California after a short stint at McKinsey & Company. He started his career during and after his time as a UC student working as an assistant and financial analyst for private investment pioneer Carl H. Lindner, Jr., the founder, chairman and CEO of American Financial Group. He has served on the board or as chairman of over 20 companies during his career.

Collins has strong ties to the University of Cincinnati. His parents, grandparents, wife and daughter attended UC. He is a director of UC Health, the university’s affiliated academic health system, serves as chairman of the Investment Committee that oversees the university’s $2 billion endowment and is a member of the Dean’s Advisory Committee at the Carl H. Lindner, Jr. College of Business.

He and his wife, Lela, served as co-chairs of the university’s Bicentennial Commission, celebrating its bicentennial in 2019. As recognition for his work on behalf of the university, he received the Chairman’s Award from the UC Foundation and the Distinguished Service Award from the Lindner College of Business. In addition to his work at UC, he is a director of the Harvard Business School Alumni Club of Cincinnati and served as a section chair for the $9 billion Harvard Campaign completed in 2018. He is active in the Cincinnati community and was a member of Leadership Cincinnati Class 30.

Collins is a UC summa cum laude graduate, served as student body president and delivered the student commencement address. He also attended Harvard Business School, where he graduated with honors, and served as publisher and CEO of The Harbus News, the campus newspaper. He and Lela met in high school, attended UC together and were both born and raised in Cincinnati — where they returned to raise their two children after 15 years in Boston, New York and Silicon Valley.

Collins was appointed to a nine-year term on the UC Board of Trustees by Ohio Gov. John Kasich in 2016. His term expires in 2025.

Ohio Gov. DeWine announces appointments to UC Board of Trustees

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