The University Record, November 14, 1996

Jean Bollinger: 'It is very exciting to think about coming back'

By Rebecca A. Doyle

"It has just been overwhelming to think about," says Jean Magnano Bollinger, who had less than 24 hours to absorb the news that spouse Lee C. Bollinger had been selected by the Regents to be the 12th president of the University of Michigan before media began calling her.

Ann Arbor residents for 21 years, the Bollingers left in 1994 when Lee Bollinger was named provost of Dartmouth College in New Hampshire. In their New Hampshire home, Jean Bollinger devoted more time and thought to her career as an artist, working in metal and wood and with plants to create sculpture. The rhythm of life changed for them as their children left for college and they moved.

That rhythm will change again when the Bollingers move back to campus, where she says they will plan on living in the President's House on Central Campus.

"We like Ann Arbor," she says. "We raised our kids here and it is very exciting to think about coming back." While in Ann Arbor, she also was one of the original four founders of the Ann Arbor Hands On Museum and served as its associate director after the facility opened.

The Bollingers have two children. Lee C. Bollinger is a third-year law student at the U-M, and Carey is a junior at Harvard studying social sciences.

Jean Magnano Bollinger says that each wife of a U-M president has done something different during her tenure as president's wife, and while there has been little time to think and talk about how she can balance her career with her new role as the president's wife, she is confident that her family will establish another new rhythm, perhaps more complicated and busier than before, but as individualized and tailored to her family as have been the routines of the previous presidential families.