The board of directors of the Wisconsin Policy Research Institute (WPRI) has appointed Mike Nichols to be its next president.
Nichols, who has been a WPRI senior fellow for the past four years, will succeed George Lightbourn, who announced his retirement in March.
Board chairman James Klauser said, "WPRI has built a solid reputation for producing research that has had an impact. Mike Nichols has the skills we need to build on that foundation. He is respected throughout Wisconsin for his ideas and his writing. We look forward to Mike putting his stamp on WPRI."
Nichols holds a bachelor's degree from Boston College and a master's degree from the University of Chicago. He worked for the Milwaukee Journal and Milwaukee Journal Sentinel for 18 years before leaving in 2008. Since then, he has written a book on 9/11, syndicated a column that appears in newspapers throughout Wisconsin and worked at WPRI.
At WPRI, Nichols authored research papers and contributed many investigative reports to Wisconsin Interest Magazine.
"WPRI has been a great asset for Wisconsin, and I'm excited about – and thankful to the board for – the opportunity to make a bigger contribution," said Nichols. "We're going to work hard every day and in the long run to make this state better through good policy and common sense."
Nichols, a Cedarburg resident, also thanked Lightbourn, who is retiring on June 28, for his "tremendous leadership."
The Wisconsin Policy Research Institute, established in 1987, is a nonpartisan, nonprofit think tank working to engage Wisconsinites in discussions and timely action on key public policy issues critical to the state's future.