Scarborough looks to round out his team
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“There’s still a few more pieces of the puzzle that I have left to place,” said University of Akron President Scott Scarborough regarding the seven vacant positions on his management team for next fall semester.
Mentioned by Scarborough at the Undergraduate Student Government (USG) meeting on April 7, the open positions include the following: senior vice president and provost, general counsel, chief diversity officer, secretary to the Board of Trustees and special assistant to the president, dean of engineering, director of construction and facilities, and the associate vice president for development.
While the administration hopes to fill general counsel and chief diversity officer positions by July 1, the hiring timeline for the senior vice president and provost is under development.
Former Senior Vice President and Provost William Sherman will retire in June, concluding a six-year career with the University. Since this January, Sherman served as the vice president of innovation and economic development as well as chief operating officer of the UA Research Foundation.
With three trustees and Scarborough serving on the search committee, the provost hiring process also involves six advisory groups made up of the following: student leaders, the Faculty Senate and the Akron American Association of University Professors (AAUP), department chairs and directors, deans of academic colleges and the law school, senior administration, and community leaders.
The search committee advisory groups participate in three critical points: determining the hiring criteria and process, interviewing finalist candidates, and presenting findings to the Board of Trustees.
Ted Mallo, the current general counsel and assistant secretary to the Board, is also retiring at the end of this school year. Overseeing the legal affairs of the University since 1976, Mallo has also served as the assistant attorney general of Ohio for 33 years.
Lee Gill, UA’s former chief diversity officer, began the same position at Clemson University on April 18.
“Lee is a successful leader who will make a positive difference for our university,” Clemson University President James P. Clements said. “We have made strides to create an inclusive campus culture, and that work must continue. I’m confident that Lee’s philosophy and experience will help us provide a learning and workplace environment that is welcoming and supportive for all students, faculty and staff.”
Appointed in 2008, Gill has led many diversity and inclusion initiatives such as the annual Black Male Summit.
Following the current secretary Paul Herold’s announcement of his intention to retire, Scarborough is now working with the Board of Trustees to restructure the secretary of the Board of Trustees position before the candidate search begins.
Apart from these positions, the University has other roles to fill next year.
The search for a director of construction and facilities, previously a vice presidential position, has not yet begun.
The hiring process for the dean of engineering has reached four finalists – one of which the administration will hire by this fall semester.
The University has posted and advertised the associate vice president for development position, which is currently accepting prospective candidates.
“I think that the number one criterion is that these people have strong academic backgrounds,” said Constance Bouchard, a history professor and AAUP member. “Both deans and provosts are responsible for overseeing and advancing the academic mission of their universities, and they need to have been personally involved in academics themselves, both in creating and transmitting knowledge, to be able to do their jobs effectively.”