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Todd Klipp Calls It a Career, After 34 Years at BU

Board of Trustees secretary will be replaced by Erika Geetter


Love for a pair of young grandchildren who live far away is hastening the end of Todd Klipp’s decades-long career at BU. Klipp—senior vice president, senior counsel, and Board of Trustees secretary—is retiring after 34 years.

Erika Geetter, who succeeded Klipp five years ago as vice president and general counsel, the University’s top legal officer, will become the board’s secretary with its September 13 meeting. In that role, she will coordinate meetings of the board and its committees, act as liaison between the trustees and the University community, and manage the Trustees office.

“My wife, Anne, and I have decided to move to West Michigan this summer to be closer to our grandchildren,” Klipp says. “They are now three and five—and growing up very fast—and we want to be a bigger part of their lives as they do.”

Klipp will continue to be a special advisor to Robert A. Brown, University president, and will assist both Geetter as she takes on the board secretary’s role and Drew Marrochello, BU athletics director, who will report directly to Brown beginning July 1.

“If I have any time or energy left,” Klipp says, “I have lots of books I’d like to read, places I’d like to visit, and things I’d like to do. It has been an honor to work for four different presidents, including, most recently, Bob Brown, whose leadership has been both inspiring and transformative.”

Brown says Klipp has had a “brilliant career of service to the University.…His wise counsel has helped guide our Board of Trustees and University leadership to where we are today. He will be missed.”

With Geetter adding to her duties, Crystal Talley, an associate general counsel since 2004, has been promoted to deputy general counsel as of July 1. She will oversee day-to-day administration of the general counsel’s office. In 2015, Talley was named BU’s inaugural associate vice president for compliance, serving in the position until November 2016.

Klipp has been trustees secretary under three chairmen, the latest current chair Kenneth Feld (Questrom’70), who calls him “the go-to person for advice and counsel because of his vast institutional knowledge of Boston University. His impeccable ethics and experiences in higher education have made Todd a valuable resource to the Board of Trustees. I wish Todd well and congratulate him on an extraordinary career at Boston University and his willingness in sharing his wisdom and reason with the trustees.

“Erika Geetter is well suited to become the next secretary of the board after being mentored by Todd,” Feld says. “She has earned her stripes as vice president and general counsel. Most recently she was instrumental in leading the teams working on the successful Wheelock College merger with Boston University.”

Brown says Geetter “has the confidence of all of the senior leadership in this important role in the governance of the University.”

As chief legal officer, Geetter has practiced law in the areas of compliance; academic and faculty affairs; employment, benefits, and labor relations; student affairs; and governance and trustee matters.

“The array of legal issues confronting large private research universities in recent years has become increasingly complex,” Geetter says, including issues of “sexual misconduct, free speech, and myriad forms of regulatory compliance.”

Ronald Reagan was president when Klipp came to BU in 1984. He became general counsel three years later and was named a vice president in 1997, secretary of the Board of Trustees in 2005, and a senior vice president in 2011.

He helped navigate the tumultuous years of 2002 to 2005, a period of instability in the presidency that ended with the inauguration of Brown and the adoption of measures to improve board governance.

A graduate of Hamilton College and the Fordham University School of Law, Klipp has also been an adjunct professor at the School of Law, where he has taught a seminar on nonprofits. Before coming to BU, he was an associate at New York and Boston law firms.

Geetter joined the general counsel office in 1996 and rose to deputy general counsel in 2011, helping in administration and representing Klipp periodically. She worked for the city of Nashville’s legal department and for Legal Services before coming to BU.

She graduated from Yale University in 1985 and earned a JD from the University of Chicago Law School in 1989. She has served as a member and cochair of the steering committee for the Boston Bar Association’s College and University Law Section.

Rich Barlow, Senior Writer, BU Today, Bostonia, Boston University
Rich Barlow

Rich Barlow can be reached at barlowr@bu.edu.

3 Comments on Todd Klipp Calls It a Career, After 34 Years at BU

  • Spellchecker on 05.01.2018 at 10:49 am

    Just a note that Erika Geetter’s last name is shown as “Geeter” in the picture caption and “Getter” at one point in the article.

    • Meaghan Glendon on 05.01.2018 at 11:59 am

      Thank you, these corrections have been made.

  • immaculate on 05.01.2018 at 11:34 am

    I thank God for Tood’s reccommended service. Personally have admired. I am also proud to be among his friends.

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