Higher Education Expert

Marty Meehan, Chancellor

Expertise / Activities:

Higher education, state and federal government

Marty Meehan is the second chancellor of the University of Massachusetts Lowell and the 14th leader of the institution, founded in the 1890s as the Lowell Normal and Lowell Textile schools.

Since assuming the chancellorship on July 1, 2007, Meehan has advanced UMass Lowell forward by every important measure of higher education – academics, research, fundraising, globalization, recruitment, retention, diversity, campus life, engagement with the community, and the condition and range of the facilities. Student enrollment, retention and diversity have all increased in the past three years, as has the number of students living on campus.  Research dollars and fundraising also have experienced growth, along with new academic programs, including a focus on global research and educational partnerships.

Under Meehan’s leadership, the University purchased the Doubletree Hotel, located in downtown Lowell, and converted it into the UMass Lowell Inn & Conference Center. The facility offers housing for approximately 400 upper-class students, creating a positive economic impact for downtown businesses, while also providing conference and event space, and lodging for the community. 

Early in 2010, the University acquired the 6,500-seat Tsongas Arena (now the Tsongas Center at UMass Lowell) and surrounding grounds.

The University also has taken over management of the UMass Lowell Bellegarde Boathouse, home to University, local and community rowing programs. 

The University purchased the former St. Joseph’s Hospital in Lowell in January 2011 and is transforming the property into a vibrant hub for students and the community.

Two new academic buildings are in the works.  The Emerging Technology and Innovation Center will house interdisciplinary research labs and the Health and Social Sciences building will be home to nursing, psychology and criminal justice classrooms and laboratories.

Meehan represented the 5th Congressional District of Massachusetts in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1993 to 2007. He served on the House Armed Services and Judiciary committees. Widely respected as a reformer, he established a national reputation for his legislative leadership in reforming campaign finance laws and protecting people against the health risks in tobacco use.

In addition to his UMass Lowell undergraduate degree, Meehan received a master’s degree in public administration from Suffolk University in 1981 and a juris doctor from Suffolk University Law School in 1986. He holds honorary degrees from Suffolk and Green Mountain College in Vermont. Meehan was an adjunct faculty member in political science at UMass Lowell in the late 1980s and currently teaches political science classes at the University.

Meehan served as Massachusetts deputy secretary of state for securities and corporations from 1986 to 1990. In the early 1990s, Meehan was the first assistant district attorney of Middlesex County.

He is on the board of directors at Lowell Cooperative Bank, Qteros, Inc. and the D'Youville Foundation.

Meehan is married to Ellen T. Murphy, a health-care consultant and former vice president at Lawrence General Hospital. They are the parents of Robert Francis and Daniel Martin Meehan.