Keenum tapped for APLU organization's board

Contact: Sid Salter

MSU President Mark E. Keenum
MSU President Mark E. Keenum

STARKVILLE, Miss.--The president of Mississippi State University has been elected to a key leadership role in the organization that represents the nation's leading research and land-grant universities.

Mark E. Keenum recently was elected to a term on the American Public Land-Grant Universities Board of Directors. Based in Washington, D.C., the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) is a research and advocacy organization of public research universities, land-grant institutions, and state university systems with member campuses in all 50 states, U.S. territories and the District of Columbia. The association is governed by a chair and a board of directors elected from the member universities and university systems.

"I'm delighted to be able to serve on the policy-making board of this vital organization," said Keenum. "Now more than ever, the importance of land-grant institutions like Mississippi State in providing research, service and education simply cannot be overstated. The APLU works hard to make that message resonate nationally and to provide information to our congressional leadership."

The association's membership includes 217 members, consisting of state universities, land-grant universities, state-university systems and related organizations. The total includes 74 U.S. land-grant institutions, of which 18 are the historically black institutions.

APLU institutions enroll more than 3.5 million undergraduate students and 1.1 million graduate students, employ more than 645,000 faculty members, and conduct nearly two-thirds of all federally-funded academic research, totaling more than $34 billion annually.

Keenum is in his fourth year as the 19th chief executive of MSU, from which he holds bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees in agricultural economics. Prior to being named president in late 2008, he was under secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. (For more, visit

For additional information on APLU, visit For more information about Mississippi State University, visit