President launches search for next UM-Flint chancellor


President Santa J. Ono has appointed a search advisory committee to assist with the search for the next chancellor of the University of Michigan-Flint.

The 16-member committee will host two town hall meetings in the coming weeks to gather input specifically from the UM-Flint community.

The chancellor is the executive leader of the Flint campus, exercising broad responsibility for all aspects of the academic, student, financial and administrative dimensions of the campus. The UM-Flint and UM-Dearborn chancellors report directly to the president and serve on the president’s leadership team.

The UM-Flint opening was created in September when former chancellor Debasish Dutta left to take a position as senior adviser to the president at the University of Illinois.

Donna Fry, a longtime UM-Flint faculty member and dean of the College of Health Sciences, was appointed interim chancellor and will continue to serve until the next chancellor comes on board.

“I’m so grateful for all the input we’ve received from the UM-Flint community on this important search,” Ono said. “We are seeking an energetic, accomplished, visionary leader for the Flint campus who will listen to and engage with faculty, students and staff, along with the broader community.”

The search advisory committee will host two town hall meetings to hear directly from individuals about the type of candidates the committee should seek.

Both town halls will take place in the Kiva at the Harding Mott University Center and will be shared online via Zoom. They are scheduled for 4-5 p.m. Nov. 28, and 11 a.m.-noon Dec. 7.

The committee will be assisted by the Washington, D.C., search firm of AGB Search. As with other searches for U-M executive officers, the selection process will remain confidential until the president makes a recommendation to the Board of Regents.

The search advisory committee will be chaired by David Luke, chief diversity officer in the UM-Flint Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Other members of the advisory committee are:

  • Gary Ashley, vice chair of the staff council, program manager, Thompson Center for Learning & Teaching, Office of K12 Partnerships, UM-Flint.
  • Lina Azeim, student government president, UM-Flint.
  • Jennifer Blackwood, professor of physical therapy and director of academic programs, physical therapy, College of Health Sciences, UM-Flint.
  • Clement Chen, professor of accounting, School of Management, UM-Flint.
  • Marilyn Filter, professor of nursing, School of Nursing; chair of the Faculty Council, UM-Flint.
  • Gerald Glasco, interim vice chancellor for business and finance, Office of the Chancellor, UM-Flint.
  • Amy Finley, dean of students, UM-Dearborn.
  • Carlos Francisco Jackson, professor and dean, Penny W. Stamps School of Art & Design, UM-Ann Arbor.
  • Marouane Kessentini, Myron and Margaret Winegarden Professor, professor of computer science, associate dean for research and graduate studies, College of Innovation & Technology, UM-Flint.
  • Aviva Dorfman, professor of education, College of Arts and Sciences, UM-Flint.
  • MiCayla Sandlin, occupational therapy graduate student, College of Health Sciences, UM-Flint.
  • Dan Sherman, facilities and operations project manager, UM-Flint.
  • Derwin Munroe, collegiate lecturer and lecturer IV in political science, College of Arts and Sciences, UM-Flint.
  • Egypt Otis, UM-Flint alumna, community leader and owner of Comma Bookstore and Social Club in Flint. 
  • Lori Vedder, interim vice provost for enrollment management, Office of the Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, UM-Flint.

Executive search consultants Garry W. Owens and Sally Mason from AGB Search are assisting with the search. Both are former higher education administrators and Owens was a professor of music and chair of the Department of Music at UM-Flint early in his career.

Lynnetta Smith, director of searches, awards and committees, and Devon Redmond, project manager, both in the Office of the President, will act as the president’s liaison to the search.

Search feedback, nominations and questions from applicants should be directed to


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