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UF Begins Second Search for 12th University President

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The creation of a presidential search committee was authorized at a University of Florida Board of Trustees meeting on April 10.

Of the 12 trustees, 11 were present either in person or by phone for the 12-minute meeting. Current University President Bernie Machen was included in the meeting via telephone conference.

In the 2012 presidential search, the previous committee decided on criteria by Aug. 28, 2012. The committee expressed a desire to stay on track with a similar schedule in this next search.

The trustees said they are hopeful that it will not be necessary to redo all the work that went into establishing the previous search criteria. They are focused on addressing whether the criteria needs to reflect the UF Rising campaign goal, as well as UF’s preeminence initiative.

Board member Steven Scott has been appointed as the chairman of the search. The next step is to name members to the committee and subcommittee, which Scott plans on doing in the next week.

Janine Sikes, the UF spokeswoman, said Scott and the future members of the search committee must determine whether the 2012 criteria adequately reflects UF’s new status as a preeminent university.

“This is the beggining of what could be a six month to a year-long process in the search for the 12th president of the University of Florida,” Sikes said.

Sikes said UF plans on posting the position on the Chronicle of Higher Education’s website in the fall of 2014.

“Well it’d be interesting to have input into it, whether directly or to help engage the faculty in the conversation,” said Marc Heft, a UF Board of Trustees member.

UF released a presidential search update after the conclusion of Thursday’s meeting. The Board is requesting comments from the Gator community on updating the criteria.

The university’s goal is to name a new president by the end of the spring 2015 semester, according to a UF news release.

After the meeting, Heft said, “We’re really optimistic as we move forward that we’ll be able to let Bernie go into retirement.”

About Erica A. Hernandez

Erica is a reporter who can be contacted by calling 352-392-6397 or emailing news@wuft.org.

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