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Update from Search Chair, Charles Smith

MARCH 2014

Charles H. SmithMembers of the USF Community,

Since my January update, the Presidential Search Committee (PSC) and our consultants at the executive search firm Isaacson Miller have been hard at work. I want to inform you of our progress and the final steps in the search process.

We have been blessed with a strong candidate pool. Over the last five weeks, the PSC narrowed its focus to 21 candidates whose professional experience and qualifications most clearly align with priorities and characteristics articulated in the Presidential Leadership Profile. I want to again thank those in the University community who contributed to this most important document last fall.

Ten quarter-finalists were then selected for interviews with the PSC. Based on these interviews, semi-finalists were selected.

We have an outstanding group of semi-finalists. It includes both Jesuit and lay candidates, all of whom “embody USF’s mission and core values as a Jesuit Catholic institution” per our Presidential Leadership Profile. Extensive, but still confidential interviews will be conducted with semi-finalists throughout March. The PSC continues to be steadfast in our commitment to you to recommend the best candidate as finalist to the Board of Trustees.

In 2009 when President Steve Privett, S.J., informed the Board of Trustees that his third, five-year contract would be his last, he made it possible for us to plan and execute a rigorous, well-organized search process followed by a smooth presidential transition. We are grateful to Steve for his generous foresight and continued leadership.

While we recognize that this presidential transition might be an uneasy time for many of you, we are optimistic that the Board of Trustees will elect the very best person to lead USF.

Charles H. Smith
Chair, Presidential Search Committee