HEBRON, Ky. (March 23, 2011) – University of Kentucky Board of Trustees Chairman Britt Brockman said Wednesday he is confident the Presidential Search Committee will be able to narrow the field of candidates to three to five finalists on April 11, given the outstanding quality of nominees interviewed over the last day-and-a-half.
“The candidate pool is just phenomenal,” Brockman said halfway through the second of three days of interviews the search committee is conducting at the Marriott Cincinnati Airport Hotel. “The quality of the candidates over the last two days is very encouraging. I continue to be more and more impressed. It’s exceeded my expectations.”
In fact, Brockman said that it will be difficult to narrow the field to only a handful of finalists, given the quality of the pool interviewed thus far.
“The quality is such that I’ve already seen three to five candidates I would be comfortable with as UK’s president,” he said.
The search committee is expected to continue interviewing candidates until nearly 9 p.m. and then complete initial interviews with preferred candidates by early Thursday afternoon. The committee will then ask for more information and reference checks on candidates of interest before meeting April 11 to select finalists. A list of those finalists will then be forwarded to the full Board of Trustees.
The board hopes to name UK’s 12th president by May 1. UK President Lee T. Todd Jr. announced in September that he would step down in June as the university’s 11th president after 10 years at the helm.
Brockman said it has been particularly encouraging to engage with candidates who have ideas for how UK can deepen its ties across the state and find additional sources of revenue during a time when state support has been flat due to the national economy.
Ideas discussed by candidates, according to Brockman, include:
· An emphasis on overseas and international programs
· More on-line learning and alternative course delivery
· Re-connecting with the community college system by offering more services directly to them.
Brockman reiterated that while the committee should not rush its work, it does need to move expeditiously as some of the candidates involved also are likely candidates for other presidencies or provost positions at competing institutions.
“We don’t need to drag our feet on this,” he said.
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