Presidential search continues as DiSalvo’s exit quickly approaches

Ed Frankonis, Crier staff

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Over the past holiday break, while Anselmian students and faculty enjoyed a respite, the school’s Presidential Search Committee was toiling away to complete its objective of finding a new college president by the end of the semester.

In order to better gauge the views of the student body on what the next college president should be like, the Committee held several open sessions for both faculty and students in Dana 1D during the first week of the spring semester.

During the student session on Friday, Jan. 18, members of the 13-strong Presidential Search Committee gathered together to hear the concerns and comments of the student body on the subject of the search for the next president.

Absent representing organizational interests, such as a reporter from the Crier, not a single student attended the 11:30-12:45pm session. The session had been carefully scheduled to take place during the Common Hour so as to avoid conflict with classes.

Aside from a total drought of student attendees, notable student organizations such as SGA did not send a representative to the student session. SGA has previously advertised for Committee events, such as the Search Forum Dec. 4, 2018. SGA did not respond for comment for this story.

The committee told The Crier that attendance aside, each of these sessions with the college body were “valuable.” The committee, which is comprised of a wide body of members from the monastery, Board of Trustees, SGA, and faculty was pleased with having held the various public sessions. A search firm assisting the college in the selection process for the next president said that they had never hosted any “follow-up sessions”, such as the one on Jan. 18 before.

The committee, with the help of search firm Isaacson, Miller, which specializes in finding presidents for Catholic colleges, has been developing a profile that acts as a kind of filter with which to select a pool of candidates that would be best suited for the job of president.

After this profile is finalized, which will occur by next week, the committee will be going “in the dark” as it interviews potential presidential candidates. This secrecy is designed to protect the confidentiality of the interview process, as potential candidates may currently possess a job at another institution.

Once a suitable selection of candidates has been found, the top choice will be sent first to Abbot Mark A. Cooper, O.S.B., chancellor of the college, and then upon possible acceptance, sent to the Board of Trustees for final approval. The process should be completed by the spring.

The committee encourages all interested members of the college body to examine the “Presidential Search” column on the college website, which is listed under “President”. Members and further details about Isaacson, Miller are available there.

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