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Presidential Search Committee ramps up the pace

The search for UK’s 12th president is now starting to ramp up. On Friday, the search committee approved a tentative timeline for moving forward. The committee will begin to review the applications of candidates in February, followed by what we hope will be interviews in March and April. That would keep us on our  timeline for extending an offer to our next president in May.


Read about the latest in search committee news. 

As importantly, the search committee had an important – and very productive – conversation about how the process will unfold in terms balancing the candidates’ privacy with the university’s desire to interact in an open fashion with a potential president.


After much discussion, the committee is recommending to the full Board of Trustees that the candidates’ names will remain confidential until we reach the stage of having finalists. At that point, we’ll ask the candidates if they are willing to disclose their names. If not, we will insist on introducing our preferred candidate to the entire campus community prior to making a hiring decision or executing a final contract.


I think this recommendation represents an appropriate and delicate balance between the desire for  transparency and openness and the need to protect the privacy of candidates, who we are asking to consider leaving safe and highly desirable positions at other institutions.


No process is perfect. But our goal – our overarching and most important goal – is to find the best person at this critical time to lead UK. We’ve made so much progress under President Todd’s leadership. It’s critical that we pick the right person to assume that mantle of leadership to help continue moving us forward toward our mandated goal of becoming a Top 20 public research process.


This balanced, common-sense approach affords us the best opportunity to do just that and I appreciate all the viewpoints of committee members as they wrestled with a tough policy decision.


That meeting came at the end of a long – but very informative – day in which search committee members heard from faculty, students and staff in forums about the presidential process. The feedback and input we received was informed and helpful. It underscored the vibrancy of our campus and the passion people have for UK. It also was encouraging to see the number of people who followed the forums via a live stream at and through Facebook and Twitter.


There are any number of ways – and across any number of platforms – that people interact and communicate in a 21st century world. I’m excited that UK is fully engaged in all those avenues for communication, particularly as we undertake such an important process for our institution’s future.

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