Final presidential search listening session March 24


Members of the University of Michigan community will have a final chance later this month to share their thoughts in person on the university’s search for a new president.

The Board of Regents will dedicate a portion of its March 24 meeting to hear from up to 15 speakers on what priorities the next U-M president should set and what background, qualifications and experiences are most important.

An online survey that has collected responses since early February also remains available for people to share their feedback. The survey will close after the board meeting March 24.

The Board of Regents will suspend its guidelines for public comments to instead allow speakers to address questions related to the presidential search.

Those interested in speaking during the March 24 meeting can submit a request on the Board of Regents website beginning at 9 a.m. March 15. Each speaker will be given two minutes, and priority will go to those who have not spoken at a previous listening session.

Regents also will allow up to five additional public speakers to speak for two minutes, including up to two speakers commenting on agenda-related matters.

In February, regents worked with an executive search firm and members of the Presidential Search Committee to host six virtual listening sessions for different segments of the university community, including Michigan Medicine and students, staff and faculty on all three campuses.

The committee, co-chaired by Regents Denise Ilitch and Sarah Hubbard, consists of faculty, staff, students and alumni from across the Ann Arbor, Dearborn and Flint campuses and the health system, as well as the other regents. The committee’s duties include helping to identify and review candidates and make recommendations to the full Board of Regents.

The Michigan constitution stipulates that the board is responsible for selecting university presidents.

“We appreciate all the feedback we’ve received to date,” Ilitch said. “Once we complete the final listening session at the regents meeting next week, we will put together a summary of all we have heard from our community, develop themes and incorporate those themes into the job description for the president.”

The committee’s work, which will also incorporate feedback provided through the online survey, will be posted to the Presidential Search website when completed.

The search process will then continue confidentially as the committee works closely with the search firm Isaacson, Miller to review candidates and conduct interviews. Regents have said they hope to hire the university’s 15th president as early as this summer.

“Our goal is to take the valuable feedback we’ve heard from so many in our community and move forward expeditiously over the next few months,” Hubbard said. “We’re thankful that so many have shared their time and their ideas.”

Regents are scheduled to meet at 4 p.m. March 24 for their first session in University Hall, a two-story multipurpose room in the newly renovated Alexander G. Ruthven Building, 1109 Geddes Ave., on Central Campus. Members of the public also will be able to watch a livestream of the meeting. but those wishing to make comments during the meeting must attend in person.

An agenda will be posted at noon March 21. People with disabilities who need assistance should contact the Office of the Vice President and Secretary of the University in advance at 734-763-8194. For more information, go to the Board of Regents website.


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