Delayed FGCU president selection to be made on Nov. 17th

by | Nov 10, 2022

  • The Florida Gulf Coast University Board of Trustees on Thursday scheduled a meeting to choose a president-elect 
  • The Board originally planned to make a selection on Nov. 3rd, but logistical issues with the state Board of Governors forced a two-week delay 
  • The final candidates — Robert G. Gregerson, Susana V. Rivera-Mills, and Tod A. Laursen — all interviewed with the Board of Trustees during the last meeting 

The Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU) Board of Trustees have scheduled an impromptu meeting on Nov. 17th to select a candidate to serve as the university’s next president.

The Board of Trustees originally planned to select a candidate last week, but elected to delay its choice of a president-elect by two weeks to better accommodate the schedule of the state Board of Governors.

The Board of Governors, who ratify the university’s recommended president-elect, met yesterday to confirm the president-elects of the University of Florida and Florida International University.

Given the FGCU Board of Trustees’ original plan to pick a candidate on November 3rd, it would have presented a logistical difficulty in terms of turnaround time before the next Board of Governors meeting.

“I just had a conversation with the Chair of the Board of Governors, and despite their willingness to be very accommodating of us because of the storm, it is very atypical of a decision like this to come forward with only a few days before a Board of Governors meeting,” said FGCU BoT Chairman Blake Gable.

“I think we would be better served as an institution for a brief period of time. We can come back in two weeks’ time, plus or minus, we will then have public comment as well as a report from AGB, but I think it makes more sense to have all that together on the same time frame.”

Following a nationwide search, the three final candidates are Robert G. Gregerson, President of the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg, Tod A. Laursen, Acting President of SUNY Polytechnic Institute, and Susana V. Rivera-Mills, Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs at Ball State University.

The Board of Trustees have already met with each candidate for an interview session, indicating that the Nov. 17th meeting will simply be for delegation.

Each candidate bring varying visions for the future of the university.

Laursen, in his cover letter speaks about dedication to diversity and inclusivity, facilitating integrated research strategies, and fiscally sustainable budgetary and enrollment practices.

Drawing on past experience, Gregerson presented a university roadmap centered around shared governance and collaborative effort and the continued development of faculty and research methods.

Rivera-Mills states that her prior role as provost at Ball State will allow her to “review policies, practices, and organizational culture” at FGCU.

At the Nov. 3rd meeting, Trustee Grace Brannigan questioned the efficacy of the delay, seeking clarification as to when confirmation of the president-elect would take place, to which Gable stated he will need to work with the Board of Governors to figure out the logistics.

The Board of Governors has a scheduled meeting in January that could potentially serve as an opportunity for confirmation.


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