By Sudershan K. Garg, Chair
YSU Board of Trustees
The past few weeks have been challenging for the Board of Trustees and campus community, so I wanted to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their patience and to review where we now stand.
Much has happened in the month since Randy Dunn’s unexpected announcement on Feb. 17 that he was resigning to take the presidency at Southern Illinois University. We negotiated a separation agreement with Dr. Dunn – he is leaving the YSU presidency on March 21, rather than Aug. 16. The board acquired the services of AGB Search, at no charge, to conduct a national search for a new president. That search has started. Provost Ikram Khawaja will serve as interim president. We also have launched a search for a new provost to replace Dr. Khawaja, who retires June 30. The two searches will run parallel, with the plan to complete the presidential search first so the president-elect will have input on the hiring of the new provost.
We are confident that we can successfully complete an expedited search for the new president. Jamie Ferrare, principal with AGB Search and a national leader in searches for university and college presidents and other academic officers, is our lead consultant. We look forward to attracting a high-level pool of quality candidates. The tentative plan is to have preliminary interviews with a short list of candidates by the end of April and to have final candidates visit campus by mid-May. We would like to have a new president in place by July 1.
The Board of Trustees will act as the Presidential Search Advisory Committee for the process, but there will be plenty of opportunities for everyone on campus and the community to provide input. As in the past, final candidates will visit campus, meet with various groups and hold open forums. Everyone on campus is invited to attend these meetings and provide feedback to the board. This is a vitally important part of the hiring process, and we encourage everyone’s participation. While we seek to be expedient, we also vow to be inclusive and transparent throughout the process.
In conclusion, I want to thank YSU faculty and staff. While the winds have whirled around Tod Hall, you have remained singularly focused on the core mission of the university – the success of our students. We have a busy few weeks in front of us – Honors Convocation, Faculty and Staff Awards Dinner and Spring Commencement, not to mention the dozens of lectures, seminars, workshops, concerts, athletics events and other campus activities. Thank you for your dedication. Onward we move.