Search committee preps for UF presidency hopefuls
Published: Wednesday, November 14, 2012 at 4:16 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, November 14, 2012 at 4:16 p.m.
As applications for the University of Florida presidency come rolling in, university officials are figuring out what to ask and where to bring finalists for the job.
APPLICANTS FOR UF PRESIDENT
The following is a list of applicants to the University of Florida presidency as of Nov. 12.
- Banerjee, Prith
- Bennett, Carol
- Brittain, Jack
- Brown, Ronald
- Bryant, Paul
- Glover, Joseph
- Goodman, Steven
- Haddock, Jorge
- Hoagland, Steve
- Johnson, Walter Sir Anthony
- Larson, Richard
- Layon, A. Joseph
- Lemanski, Larry
- Lovett-Doust, Lesley Marion
- McClellan, Gwyndolyn
- Mulroy, Patrick
- Quadrado, Jose Carlos
- Salvatore, Ralph
- Vitulli, Clark
SOURCE: Greenwood/Asher & Associates, search firm working for UF
UF has so far received at least 19 applications, including from some familiar names such as UF Provost Joe Glover and former College of Medicine professor Dr. Joseph Layon.
Administrators at other universities have also applied, but the list lacks the major university presidents and political figures who were nominated by third parties.
Members of UF's search committee expect some top candidates will wait to apply, keeping their interest out of the public eye as long as possible.
“The people that we might want most to apply are the people who will not apply until the last minute,” said Scott Nygren, an English professor and former Faculty Senate chairman.
In the meantime, the search committee is determining campus interview sites that showcase the university and questions to ask candidates. Questions are being finalized next week so that interviews can be conducted soon after candidates are chosen.
“It feels like being a fireman waiting to jump down the pole when the alarm goes off,” Nygren said.
The committee of UF officials, faculty and others plans to bring a handful candidates to Gainesville for interviews before choosing a smaller group of finalists who would participate in a more involved process. Nygren leads a subcommittee arranging details of that process.
If no finalists are identified before the holiday break, he said, campus interviews would wait until students and faculty return in January.
UF President Bernie Machen has said he'll retire by the end of next year, with the exact date determined by the naming of his successor.
The list of applicants for his job as of last week included Glover, who has been at UF since 1983 and provost since 2008. He declined comment for this story.
Another applicant with UF ties is Layon, a former College of Medicine faculty member who held a variety of positions there over 28 years before leaving in 2011. He's now director of critical care medicine for the Geisinger Health System, a five-hospital system based in central Pennsylvania.
“The only job that I'd leave this job for is that job,” he said.
Layon, who chaired the UF Faculty Senate from 2000 to 2001, was chief of critical care and a professor of anesthesiology, surgery and medicine at UF. He said his experience at UF as well as his current responsibility at hospitals with a roughly $700 million budget have prepared him for the UF presidency.
“I think I have the fiscal experience that it takes,” he said. “I certainly have the academic and educational experience that it takes, so I think I can do this job.”
Several other applicants declined comment or didn't respond to requests for comment. The list includes Jorge Haddock, dean of George Mason University's School of Management; Larry Lemanski, chief research officer for Texas A&M University-Commerce; and Jack Brittain, chair in entrepreneurship at the University of Utah.
Applicants with experience leading a university include Lesley Lovett-Doust, former president of Nipissing University in Ontario, Canada. Prith Banerjee, former senior vice president of research at Hewlett Packard and director of HP Labs, is among applicants with experience outside academia.
The search committee plans to bring finalists to campus sites that showcase UF's areas of strength, such as the Emerging Pathogens Institute to show a focus on interdisciplinary research.
“We're trying to present ourselves to them as they present themselves to us,” Nygren said.
The full search committee meets Tuesday to determine questions for candidates. The group plans to hold interviews that include a faculty forum and one for students, staff and the public.
Nygren said that he couldn't predict how long the search process would last before finalists are brought to campus, but Machen's plans have provided time for the process.
“One of the real gifts that President Machen has given us is that since he's agreed to retire at the end of the 2013, we have basically as long as it takes to find the right candidate,” Nygren said.
Contact staff reporter Nathan Crabbe at 338-3176 or email@example.com. Visit www.thecampussun.com for more stories on the University of Florida.
Reader comments posted to this article may be published in our print edition. All rights reserved. This copyrighted material may not be re-published without permission. Links are encouraged.