FGCU Board of Trustees to vote on president-elect next week

by | Oct 27, 2022

  • The Florida Gulf Coast Presidential Search Committee will convene on Nov. 2 to interview the three presidential candidate finalists before selecting and presenting the president-elect to the Board of Trustees
  • The three finalists — Robert G. Gregerson, Tod A. Laursen, and Susana V. Rivera-Mills — were announced earlier in October 
  • Prior to the interviews, each finalist will be given an opportunity to partake in an individual public forum where faculty, staff, and students can ask questions 
  • Upon a final vote by the Board of Trustees, the president-elect must be confirmed by the state Board of Governors to assume the position

Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU) will interview the finalists for its presidential search next week. Upon the selection of a president-elect, a final vote will be conducted by the Board of Trustees.

The meeting agenda states that each finalist will be given an hour to speak with the Presidential Search Committee in an interview setting on Nov. 2, after which committee members will evaluate responses and select a president-elect later that afternoon.

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.

“FGCU received an outstanding response to our call for applicants, and our finalists represent the top and emerging leaders in the field of higher education,” said Edward Morton, the chair of FGCU’s Presidential Search Advisory Committee and a member of FGCU’s Board of Trustees. “We are looking forward to bringing these accomplished, talented, and innovative individuals to campus to meet with our stakeholders.”

Prior to the interviews, each finalist will be given an opportunity to partake in an individual public forum. During each forum, finalists can introduce themselves and engage in a question-and-answer session moderated by a representative of FGCU.

The public forums are set to begin on Friday, Oct. 28th with Laursen. Gregerson and Rivera-Mills will speak with faculty, students, and staff on Oct. 31 and Nov. 1, respectively.

Upon the selection of a candidate, they will meet with the university’s Board of Trustees before being recommended to the state Board of Governors to be confirmed for the role.

“Following a vote by FGCU’s Board of Trustees, the president-elect must be confirmed by the Florida Board of Governors,” the search website states.

Since the Presidential search was publicly launched in June, the school claims that interest among candidates was high, accruing between 20 and 30 potential successors across previous months.

FGCU’s current President, Mike Martin, has served the role of president for the past four years. Martin announced earlier this year that he plans to step down into retirement in December 2022, at the conclusion of the upcoming fall academic semester.

During his tenure, Martin helped the university recoup lost funding; in the years before his appointment, FGCU lost $8 million in performance-based funding via a ranking system determined by 10 metrics that evaluate Florida public institutions. With a goal to restore previous funding standards, Martin procured more than $23.7 million.

Across his four years, the FGCU’s four-year graduation rate improved by almost 19 percentage points, the six-year graduation rate jumped 4.6 percentage points, and the net cost of tuition and fees decreased 48 percent for those who completed their degree in four years instead of six.


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