The University of Tulsa Board of Trustees today announced the start of a national search for the 21st president of the institution.
“The University of Tulsa is the highest-ranked university in Oklahoma and a transformative force for our students, the community, the culture and the economy of the City of Tulsa and for the region more broadly,” said Board Chair Dana Weber. “The world of higher education is changing rapidly, and TU must be agile and adapt as well. Launching a national search for our next president is an important part of this process to ensure our continued success.”
The board has formed a Presidential Search Committee with Trustee Marcia MacLeod serving as chair and Trustee Scott Dickman as vice chair. As the elected president of the Faculty Senate, Jennifer Airey has been asked to represent faculty perspectives on the committee. The rest of the search committee will include other trustees and yet-to-be-finalized student and staff representatives.
“Selecting a new president is a significant step in the history of an institution,” MacLeod said. “It is important for this process to include a variety of perspectives and broader understanding of the concerns of our students, faculty and staff. All search committee members will play an important role in helping the committee identify the qualities, skills, attributes and experiences desired in a candidate.”
The first order of business for the committee is the selection of an executive search firm to guide the national search. “We believe it is important to leverage the expertise of a firm experienced in recruiting exceptional and diverse leaders for universities and other organizations that advance the public good,” MacLeod said. The firm will help the committee define the steps and timeline for the search process.
Interim President Janet Levit will continue to lead the crucial efforts of the administration as this search process is underway. “I personally believe it important for the ongoing vitality and excellence of this institution that a national search is conducted to identify the next president. I fully support this decision,” said Levit. “Just as I have every day since I was unexpectedly named interim president, I will continue to focus on the success of our students, the quality of our academics and putting TU back on a sustainable financial path.”
“TU is now on a sounder path, despite the additional headwinds created by the coronavirus pandemic, in large part due to the hard work and dedication of Interim President Levit and her team,” Weber said. “I want to extend my gratitude for Interim President Levit’s work and her continued focus on moving the university forward this summer and fall to balance the budget. There is still a lot of hard work to be done, however. These efforts need to continue unabated, and our strategy needs to continue to adapt and evolve as we meet the changing demands and expectations in higher education.”