Presidential position description approved as search continues

Experience, a commitment to fundraising and finding a permanent provost are included in the presidential position description, which was created by the Presidential Search Committee and unanimously approved by the board of trustees Thursday.

The information was compiled during listening sessions throughout the semester, website input and discussions with the board of trustees and presidential search committee. John Ferraro, chair of the presidential search committee said this culminated to more than 1,100 people’s input.

“It is a synthesization of what we heard and what we believe as trustees and the selection committee are most important,” Ferraro said. “The presidential description – it is a little different in the sense that we wanted to contextualize what are the opportunities and challenges for the next president. Not just for Marquette but higher education.”

The description will be used to recruit the next president of Marquette. The position description includes the key opportunities and challenges for the next president and qualifications and characteristics.

Some of the key opportunities and challenges for the next president outlined in the description include “expand the university’s resources, in particular through philanthropy by serving in a prominent role of cultivating and soliciting donors, as well as providing leadership in the largest comprehensive campaign in Marquette’s history” and “develop a cohesive leadership team, including hiring a permanent Provost and integrating him/her into a high-functioning leadership group.”

Leadership priorities include “appreciation for the significance of national athletic program,” “demonstrated success in securing transformational gifts” and “record of success as a visionary executive.”

“A bold leader with personal humanity” and “a servant leader who is both visible and approachable,” are among the personal attributes for the next president.

All of these characteristics and qualifications were compiled through the listening sessions, online submissions and search committee and trustee discussion.

Ferraro explained that this information will be the foundation in which the search firm will go out and identify the candidate pool.

“We are saying that the person should have most, if not all of these (traits),” he said. “So when we go out and look at the candidate pools and we find the best person for the roles of the job that is against this criteria right here.”

Ferraro also said that the committee is encouraging the Marquette community to nominate candidates they think will be successful leaders.

“We are encouraging everyone who has a point of view to share with us who they think would bit the characteristics,” he said. “What is most important to us in terms of the strategic process is that we listen to our various stakeholders – that is most important,”

So far, the search committee received 500 nominations. Ferraro is encouraging people to continue to make nominations on the presidential search webpage.

Ferraro said the next few weeks are the most critical period for nominations. The next step will be to filter these nominations and get a pool of the top prospects that will be vetted and cultivated. The committee will then choose its finalists and makes a recommendation to the board of trustees, who is then responsible for selecting and appointing the next president of Marquette.

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