Committee appointed in chancellor searchThe hunt for a future North Dakota University Systems chancellor is on.
By: Klark Byrd, The Dickinson Press
The hunt for a future North Dakota University Systems chancellor is on.
During a meeting held at Dickinson State University on Thursday, the State Board of Higher Education approved 16 higher education and private sector representatives to a search committee and appointed a consultant group to assist in finding worthy candidates.
Chancellor Bill Goetz announced earlier this year that he plans to retire Aug. 31, 2012.
The SBHE approved the selection of AGB Search as consultants after a recommendation from Goetz. This was one of six consultant firms to show interest in the project, he said.
“Upon evaluation, based upon extensive experience in public governing board searches, experience in North Dakota and the surrounding region, national reputation, the ability to generate highly qualified candidates and cost, the recommendation is the board go with AGB with the consultant for the chancellor search,” Goetz said during the meeting.
Multiple Board members were able to spend time with lead consultant James McCormick during a meeting at an earlier date, Board President Grant Shaft said.
“Mr. McCormick gave the sense he would be able to glean from all of us what we were looking for in a new chancellor,” he said during the meeting. “We just had a good level of comfort with Mr. McCormick and AGB.”
McCormick is a former chancellor of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system.
The consultant firm is an affiliate of the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges. AGB Search will be paid $65,000 for their work.
During a call after the meeting, McCormick and AGB Search consultant James Fererre said the first step in the process is to understand what the expectations of the new candidate will be.
“It’s quite and extensive process,” McCormick said. “It is really, really important to spend time to understand what they are looking for.”
During the “pre-search” portion of the project, the consultants will spend time with the committee, the chancellor and the university officials, Fererre said.
“Essentially we will do our homework,” he said. “You can’t come into a search like this with predeterminations. You expect the community to weigh in on the expectations.”
The search committee is comprised of board members, university presidents, NDUS officials, faculty, students, staff and public representatives.
“The chancellor is the figurehead of higher education in this state, and in a state like North Daktoa, it’s a community venture,” Shaft said.
Joe Rothschiller, representing Steffes Corp. as a committee member from the public sector, said the committee will look for someone who fits in culturally with talent and can be a part of the community.
He said the diverse background of the committee members will help in the selection.
Rodney Howe, a public representative from the State Board of Agricultural Research appointed to the committee, said it will be a lot of work, but he wouldn’t have it any other way.
He said he was pleased with the diversity of the committee and he hopes the new candidate will provide sustained innovation and student-focused leadership.
“I think it is an incredibly important task we have been assigned that will affect things 10 or 20 years down the road,” he said. “I take it very seriously and hope we can contribute in an appropriate way.”
Following the meeting, Shaft said he expects the search to be concluded in late January.