SUU Welcomes New Trustee, Cedar City Local

Published: November 02, 2012 | Read Time: 4 minutes

Southern Utah University is pleased to announce the appointment of Ann Marie Allen to the SUU Board of Trustees, the University’s governing oversight. Allen replaces Nina R. Barnes, who served for three years in support of SUU before accepting a position on the Utah Board of Regents.

“I am honored by the invitation to serve on SUU’s Board of Trustees,” Allen said. “I am deeply committed to making higher education—especially of the quality offered at SUU—accessible to everyone.”  

Born and raised in central and southern Utah, Allen and her family have a long relationship with SUU, bringing Allen into her new appointment as trustee with a wealth of institutional knowledge and commitment to the University’s ongoing success.

In fact, Allen’s father, Kay L. McIff, was a member of the University’s Board of Trustees during a crucial moment in institutional history as the then Southern Utah State College transitioned to its new appointment as a state university. He served as a trustee for six years, four of which were spent as board chair.

To say that Anne Marie has experienced every facet of the University is far from hyperbole. Married to Randy Allen, a licensed attorney and professor at SUU within the Department of Political Science and Criminal Justice, Anne Marie, her husband and three children have been involved with SUU since moving to Cedar City 12 years ago.

“Anne Marie and her family have been actively involved with the University for many years.  To now have her insight and expertise as a Trustee will be of added benefit to our entire community," said SUU President Michael T. Benson.

A strong figure across the local community for both her professional accomplishments and community engagement, Allen has spoken at several important annual events on SUU’s campus to promote higher education among women and gender equality. Her children have, in years past, been students at the SUU Preschool, participants in the SUU youth gymnastics program, performers in the Utah Shakespeare Festivals’ Playmakers program and, most recently, have performed in youth roles within the Festival’s main summer productions. In addition to teaching at SUU, Allen’s husband is also the coach for the mock trial student group on campus.

For all these reasons and many more, Benson is both pleased and excited to now welcome Allen to the Trustees. “I have every confidence she will do an outstanding job as our newest member,” he asserted.

“Being on the ground level with the university there is a feeling of ownership while you see this great partnership between the university and the community develop and blossom, said outgoing trustee Nina Barnes. “I am very sad to leave my position but I know that Ann Marie will do a tremendous job. She is a very prepared, educated woman and will be an example to all students at SUU.”

In cooperation with the University’s top administrators, the SUU Board of Trustees facilitates communication between the University and community; assists in fundraising and development projects; and strengthens alumni and community identification with the University’s tradition and goals.

According to a press release announcing Allen’s official appointment by the State of Utah as trustee, Governor Gary R. Herbert stated, “Allen will bring valuable insight and counsel to the SUU Board of Trustees. Her blend of government and teaching experience, as well as her immersion in law, will prove valuable for SUU’s students and board.”

Previously, Allen has served as a representative to the American Bar Association, State Legislative Process Committee, the Fifth District Court Judicial Nominating Committee and Executive Committee for the Utah Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission.

Allen was named Beaver County Public Defender in 2002 and then became a partner for the Barnes & Allen Law Firm in Cedar City. She is now a deputy Iron County attorney and an appointee to the Utah State Indigent Defense Taskforce.

Allen obtained a juris doctorate at Brigham Young University, where she taught law and ethics as an adjunct professor; she taught similar courses as an adjunct faculty member at Utah Valley State College, now UVU.

Allen has often been sought as a legal counselor. She has served on the State Legislative Process Committee, the Fifth District Court Judicial Nominating Committee, and the Executive Committee of the Southern Utah Inns of Court. She is currently the Commissioner for the Utah Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission.

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