Rebecca Blank, 67, former president-elect and professor of economics at Northwestern University, died Friday from cancer.

Blank was chosen in October 2021 to succeed Morton Schapiro as president of Northwestern.

She served as chancellor of the University of Wisconsin-Madison from 2013 until May 2022.

She was preparing to join Northwestern after that, but in July 2022, she announced that she had been diagnosed with cancer and would step down from her role as president-elect in order to focus on her health and her family.

Blank was on the faculty of Northwestern’s Economics Department from 1989 to 1999.

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Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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