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The search is on for new APSU president

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The Presidential Search Committee met Monday, Feb. 17, to discuss the process of selecting nominees for the next APSU president.

The purpose of the committee is advisory, meaning the members will collectively pick three to five satisfactory candidates to send to Chancellor John Morgan, who will choose one name to send to the Tennessee Board of Regents.

TBR can either accept or deny the chosen candidate. If the board accepts the candidate, this person becomes the university president.

“I expect this new committee to do every bit as good a job as we did last time,” Robert Thomas, committee chair said. Thomas was on the search committee that nominated President Hall.

Since the search is confidential for applicants – a recent change – this meeting was the last open to the public.

TBR has posted a proposed timeline on their website for the process of hiring a new president.

By Friday, March 14, the search committee will meet to begin reviewing candidates’ applications.

On Monday, March 31, and Tuesday, April 1, the search committee will meet to begin the first round of interviews.

The finalists will be selected to visit campus on Wednesday, April 16.

From Monday, April 28, to Friday, May 2, finalists will visit the campus for the second round of interviews with the search committee and will participate in “campus forums.” Committee members will “gather feedback from constituents” during this process.

Morgan is expected to meet with committee members to make the final selection for recommendation to TBR “within a few weeks after the campus visits.”

When asked to recap the discussion of criteria for the next APSU president, Thomas said the candidate should “keep doing what President Hall has been doing for the last seven years.”

Morgan said he expects the committee to find a number of candidates who are appropriate for the position by the end of the spring semester in order to fill Hall’s position for the fall semester.

“I think there is time, realistically, to have someone in the position,” Morgan said.

Thomas agreed with Morgan’s statement and said there is “no rush to fill the seat until we are satisfied.”

If the committee does not find a “satisfactory” candidate before the fall 2014 semester, an interim president will be appointed while the committee continues searching for a permanent candidate.

In a faculty senate meeting on Thursday, Jan. 24, President Tim Hall said he expects an interim president to be hired for a brief period.

Hall told faculty senators he hopes a faculty member will fill the interim position so the university can continue to run “smoothly.”

Hall’s last day as APSU President will be Friday, May 9.

According to Morgan, Tennessee State University had an interim president for two years. Morgan said the committee’s interest is “getting the right president for this institution for the next generation.”

“This job is very attractive compared to previous years. APSU is out there now … Tennessee schools are the leading edge of innovations and expectations,” Thomas said in response to inquiries about the national recognition APSU has been receiving in recent semesters.

The University of Memphis is also currently undergoing a presidential search. According to Betty Asher, the search in Memphis will not affect APSU because “they are different institutions.”

Asher works for Greenwood/Asher & Associates, the firm leading the presidential search.

Toward the end of the meeting, Thomas told members “reading these résumés is very time consuming.”

Thomas also told members to “think carefully” while reviewing the applications.

“The very best candidates will show up at the last minute,” Asher said. “It’s human nature.”

A public forum, where faculty and staff spoke about the characteristics important to them in the next APSU president, was held before the presidential search committee met.

“The kind of human being you hire must be a good person … Hall always had an open-door policy,” Mickey Wadia, APSU English professor, said. “I didn’t have to go through a gauntlet of people to get through to his office.”

Geology professor, Jack Diebert, talked about Hall’s interactions with faculty members.

“He listened to faculty and took action,” Diebert said. “He wasn’t a big manager. He was a leader.”

Members of the presidential search committee are:

John Farris
TBR BOARD MEMBER
Memphis, Tenn.

Darrell Freeman
TBR BOARD MEMBER
Nashville, Tenn.

Robert Thomas, Chair
TBR BOARD MEMBER
Nashville, Tenn.

Emily Reynolds
TBR BOARD VICE CHAIRMAN
Nashville, Tenn.

Elaine Berg
FACULTY REPRESENTATIVE
Associate Professor, Library

John Blake
FACULTY REPRESENTATIVE
Associate Professor, Engineering Technology

Chad Brooks
FACULTY REPRESENTATIVE
Faculty Senate President
Associate Professor, Biology

Mercy Cannon
FACULTY REPRESENTATIVE
Faculty Senate Vice President

Jessi Dillingham
STUDENT REPRESENTATIVE
Vice President, Student Government Association

Mike Rainier
STUDENT REPRESENTATIVE
President, Student Government Association

Brandon Harrison
ALUMNI REPRESENTATIVE
National Alumni Association President
Ashland City, Tenn.

Marissa Chandler
SUPPORT STAFF REPRESENTATIVE
Staff Senate President
Director of International Education

Carrie Harris
SUPPORT STAFF REPRESENTATIVE
Administrative Assistant 3, Finance & Administration

Brian Johnson
ADMINISTRATIVE REPRESENTATIVE
Interim Vice President for Strategic Planning and
Institutional Effectiveness

Ron Smithfield
BUSINESS COMMUNITY REPRESENTATIVE
Consultant and Former Owner of Local Manufacturing Business
Clarksville, Tenn.

Dee Boaz
COMMUNITY-AT-LARGE REPRESENTATIVE
President’s Circle of Advisors
Clarksville, Tenn.

Evans Harvill
COMMUNITY-AT-LARGE REPRESENTATIVE
APSU Alumnus and President’s Circle of Advisors
Clarksville, Tenn.

Maggie Kulback
COMMUNITY-AT-LARGE REPRESENTATIVE
APSU Alumna and Campaign Committee
Clarksville, Tenn.

Keri V. McInnis
COMMUNITY-AT-LARGE REPRESENTATIVE
APSU Alumna
Senior Vice President
Pinnacle Financial Partners
Nashville, Tenn.

Horace Murphy, Jr.
COMMUNITY-AT-LARGE REPRESENTATIVE
Board Member – Clarksville-Montgomery County Schools
Clarksville, Tenn.

Tom Perry
COMMUNITY-AT-LARGE REPRESENTATIVE
APSU Alumnus
Senior Vice President and CFO
Delta Dental of Tennessee (Nashville)
Clarksville, Tenn. TAS

About Lauren Cottle

Lauren Cottle is a senior English major and history minor at APSU. She is currently the Perspectives Editor at The All State. She is also involved in PELP, the Laurel Wreath Society and Phi Alpha Theta.

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