University of Dallas presidential search update

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A conference room on third floor Cardinal Farrell Hall is prepared for a meeting. Photo by Kaity Chaikowsky.

The Board of Trustees plans to select the University of Dallas’ next president this Friday, Feb. 22 as part of their upcoming meeting, provided it is able to come to an agreement with the candidate, Interim President Dr. John Plotts said in an interview.

The board plans to announce its choice possibly in the next three weeks or month, depending on how long it takes to finalize the contract, Plotts said.

“We’re dead on-schedule, couldn’t be any more perfect,” Plotts said. “[Search committee chair] Richard Husseini has done … an incredible job keeping it on schedule.”

The projected timeline on the presidential search website estimated that the president would be announced by the end of February.

The board will select the president from candidates chosen by the Presidential Search Committee, with the help of the additional representatives of the UD community who were asked to participate after the holiday break.

Besides selecting the final candidate, the board must also prepare contract terms and the communication roll-out during this meeting, Plotts said. The board has allocated most of the meeting time for this process.

The process this year has been more secretive than in previous presidential searches, according to research from the archives published in a Jan. 31, 2019 University News article. The names of candidates have been kept confidential, as well as those of the additional representatives chosen to interact with them.

Alumnus Joseph Arlinghaus addressed this confidentiality on the Alumni for Liberal Education Facebook page on Dec. 6.

“Though the process does not allow for open consideration of candidates right now, there is no reason people should be silent on qualities and the politics of the process,” Arlinghaus wrote.

“I don’t know much about the process,” said senior Clare Basil. “I wish more students could have met with them [the candidates].” But Basil added that she trusts the students who have been involved in the search and that “a lot of prayers” are being said for the search process.

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