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Board of Trustees begins search process, approves Presidential Search Advisory Committee

July 30, 2010 -- The Board of Trustees of Arkansas State University met today to formally begin the search process for a new president to lead the ASU System.

Interim President Robert L. Potts brought recommendations to the Board of Trustees to get the search process underway during a meeting held at ASU’s Little Rock office.
The board adopted a resolution appointing 11 individuals to comprise a Presidential Search Advisory Committee.  Florine Tousant Milligan of Forrest City, who serves as Board chair and will serve as the search advisory committee chair, recommended the committee members based on their experience and familiarity with the ASU System and their ability to represent the broad spectrum of constituencies served by the ASU System.

Also, the trustees adopted a resolution formally recommending that the ASU Foundation, Inc., contract with Effective Leadership, LLC, a consulting firm headed by Dr. Tom Meredith, to assist with the search.  Meredith has served as commissioner of Mississippi’s public university system, chancellor of the University System of Georgia, chancellor of the University of Alabama System and president and professor of education at Western Kentucky University.

His professional activities includes terms as president of the National Association of System Heads, an organization comprised of the chief executive officers of the 51 public higher education systems in the United States, and as chair of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities.

“The ideal person for this position is very likely not looking for other employment at this time,” Dr. Potts told the Board.  “A firm like Tom Meredith’s has the expertise, the experience and a network of contacts to help identify well-qualified, prospective candidates who might not otherwise respond to an advertisement.  A proactive approach is essential in a process like this.”

Dr. Potts has indicated he wants to assist the Board with finding the right individual to head the ASU System and help ensure a smooth transition, but he does not plan to be a candidate for the permanent appointment.

At a meeting on May 7, the Board appointed Potts to serve as interim president following the resignation of Dr. Les Wyatt, who announced he wanted to step down and return to the faculty after 15 years as president.  Potts served as chancellor at ASU-Jonesboro from November 2006 until his new appointment took effect on July 1, and previously served as chancellor of the North Dakota University System, and as president of the University of North Alabama.

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Pictured:  Dr. Tom Meredith, Effective Leadership, LLC

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