Prominent group of new University trustees includes Kilts, Lansing
Five distinguished alumni of the University and its Laboratory Schools have recently been elected University Trustees, including James Kilts (M.B.A.,’74), a marketing master known for his successful corporate turnarounds, and Sherry Lansing (LAB,’62), one of the motion picture industry’s most influential executives.
Also elected at the Friday, June 11 meeting of the University Board of Trustees, were Mary Lou Gorno (M.B.A.,’76), who made major strides early in her career as the youngest equity partner at Tatham, Laird & Kudner and the first member of Leo Burnett Worldwide Inc.’s senior management team to be hired from outside the company; John Martin (M.S.,’75, Ph.D.,’78), an inventor of pharmaceuticals that are used to treat infectious diseases; and Emily Nicklin (B.A.,’75, J.D.,’77), one of America’s top 50 women litigators.
Currently, Gorno is vice president and global account director at A.T. Kearney Inc.; Kilts is chairman, president and CEO of Gillette Company; Lansing is chairman and CEO of Paramount Pictures Corporation, Motion Picture Group; Martin is president and CEO of Gilead Sciences; and Nicklin is partner at the Chicago law firm Kirkland & Ellis. While all five individuals are leaders in their fields, they also have supported and promoted the University and its mission through service, leadership and gifts.
Gorno, who earned her M.B.A. from the University’s Graduate School of Business in 1976, also received a B.A. from St. Mary’s College at Notre Dame and an M.S. from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism.
Upon graduation from the GSB, Gorno joined the firm Tatham, Laird & Kudner, where she was named the youngest equity partner in the agency’s history. She then was recruited to serve as president of the Hybrid Group for the worldwide health agency Hamilton, Carver & Lee and built it into one of the top specialty agencies in the industry.
Gorno then joined the advertising agency Leo Burnett Worldwide Inc., which broke a long-standing corporate policy of only promoting from within by making her a part of its senior management team. Gorno was named vice president of Carmer-Krasselt in 1997 and of A.T. Kearney in 2000.
Since 1994, Gorno has served on the University’s Visiting Committee to the Social Sciences Division, and she has recently been a member of the Ad Hoc Committee to Review the Visiting Committees. She also serves on the boards of Court Theatre and the University Women’s Board.
Gorno has been active as a member of numerous Chicago alumni committees. In 1995, she was honored with a Professional Achievement Citation, which the University created to recognize alumni whose vocational achievements have distinguished them in their fields, have brought credit to the University and have benefited their fellow citizens.
Gorno also is a trustee of Chicago’s Goodman Theatre, Hubbard Street Dance Company and the Morton Arboretum.
Kilts, the first “outside executive ” in over 70 years to run the Gillette Company, earned his M.B.A. from Chicago’s GSB in 1974 and a B.A. from Knox College.
Kilts, who helped revive General Foods Corporation’s Kool-Aid brand while completing his M.B.A. at Chicago, joined the Philip Morris Companies thereafter as senior vice president of Kraft International in 1985.
He was named executive vice president of Worldwide Foods in 1994. Following his turnaround of Philip Morris’ Post cereal and Kraft cheese groups, Kilts was named president and CEO of Nabisco Inc., where he revitalized the Oreos and Chips Ahoy brands and engineered the company’s sale to Philip Morris. He was named chairman, president and CEO of the Gillette Company in January 2001.
Kilts is Chairman of the University’s Council on the Graduate School of Business, of which he has been a member since 1991. He also is the founding donor for the James M. Kilts Center for Marketing at the GSB.
In addition to his involvement with the University, Kilts is a trustee of Knox College and a chairman of the board of directors of the Grocery Manufacturers of America.
Kilts also is a volunteer member of the Advisory Council for the Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation and endowed an educational fund for students of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod faith.
A graduate of the University’s Laboratory Schools, Lansing is responsible for overseeing all aspects of Paramount Pictures’ motion picture operations. Under her leadership, three of Paramount’s films won the Academy Award for Best Picture during a four-year period. In 1996, she became the first female studio head to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and in 2002, Hollywood Reporter named her “the most powerful woman in the entertainment business.”
After graduating from Northwestern University with a B.S. in English, Lansing worked as a math and English teacher in the Los Angeles County Public Schools system before turning her attention to the film industry in 1969.
She served as senior vice president for production at Columbia Pictures, president of the movie division at 20th Century Fox—the first woman to hold such a position in the industry—and co-founder of Jaffe-Lansing Productions before being named chairman and CEO of Paramount’s Motion Picture Group.
Lansing received the Laboratory Schools Distinguished Alumna Award in 1993. She is a former director of the Chicago Lying-In Hospital, and a former member of the Council for the Biological Sciences Division and the Laboratory Schools Alumni Association. This year, Lansing was a Marjorie Kovler Visiting Fellow.
In addition to her involvement with the University, Lansing serves as a regent for the University of California system; a governor of the Rand Graduate School, the National Conference of Christians and Jews, the American Red Cross and the Entertainment Industry Foundation; a trustee of the American Museum of the Moving Image, chair of the California Breast Cancer Research Program, and a member of several boards of directors, including Teach For America, the American Film Institute and the Music Center of Los Angeles.
She has received numerous honors, including the Milestone Award from the Producers Guild of America, the Outstanding Woman in Business Award from the Women’s Equity Action League, the Distinguished Community Service Award from Brandeis University, and the Alfred P. Sloan Jr. Memorial Award.
Martin, who earned both an M.S. and a Ph.D. in Chemistry from Chicago, after receiving his B.S. in chemical engineering at Purdue University, is president and CEO of Gilead Sciences, a biopharmaceutical company that discovers, develops and commercializes therapeutics to advance the care of patients suffering from life-threatening diseases worldwide.
Headquartered in Foster City, Calif., and with operations in the United States, Europe and Australia, Gilead Sciences focuses its research and clinical programs on anti-infective drugs.
After receiving his Ph.D., Martin joined Syntex Company where he and a colleague co-invented Ganciclovir, an antiviral pharmaceutical, which has become the most-prescribed drug for cytomegalovirus, an infection that often preys on HIV-AIDS patients.
In 1984, he became director of antiviral chemistry at Bristol-Myers Squibb, serving as project team leader for the development of the anti-AIDS drug stavudine. He joined Gilead Sciences in 1990 as vice president of research and development and became chief operating officer in 1995. He was named president and CEO in 1996.
Martin is a member of the Visiting Committee to the Physical Sciences Division. In addition, he is a member of the National Advisory Allergy and Infectious Diseases Council of the National Institutes of Health.
In 1990, he received the Isbell Award of the American Chemical Society for his applications of carbohydrate chemistry to the design of medicinally active nucleosides and nucleotides; in 2003, he received the Gertrude B. Elion Award for Scientific Excellence from the International Society for Antiviral Research.
Martin is a member of the boards of the California Healthcare Institute and the Biotechnology Industry Organization. He also serves as chairman of the board of directors of the Bay Area Bioscience Center and former president of the International Society of Antiviral Research.
Nicklin is a partner in the Chicago law firm Kirkland & Ellis, where she specializes in commercial litigation. In 1996, she was named one of the American Lawyer’s “Forty Five under 45,” and in 2001, the National Law Journal named her one of “America’s Top 50 Women Litigators.” Nicklin was the first woman elected to the firm’s 15-member management committee.
After receiving her B.A. in Law at Chicago, Nicklin enrolled in the University’s Law School, graduating with a J.D. in 1977. She joined Kirkland & Ellis in 1979, after serving as law clerk to a Chicago U.S. District Court judge. In 1989, she took a two-year leave of absence from the firm to serve as Deputy Corporation Counsel for the City of Chicago.
Since 2000, Nicklin has been a member of the Visiting Committee on the College and Student Activities. She has volunteered as an Alumni Career Speaker for the University’s Taking the Next Step program, and has served as a Lecturer in the Law School and as a board member for the Laboratory Schools.
In addition to her involvement with the University, Nicklin serves as one of six mayoral appointees to Chicago’s Board of Ethics, and is an adjunct law professor at Northwestern University Law School.
She also is a teacher in the Illinois Continuing Legal Educational Bar Program, and a teacher and team leader for the National Institute for Trial Advocacy.