Presidential Search Committee Holds First Day of Listening Sessions

April 14, 2009

Media contact: Lori Fogleman, director of media communications, (254) 710-6275

As Baylor University continues to search for its 14th president, Baylor's Presidential Search Committee today held the first of a series of planned listening sessions, including an open session with Baylor faculty and private meetings with representatives from Staff Council, Executive Council and Student Government.

"We were very pleased to hear from Baylor faculty, students, staff and administrators who took time out of their very busy schedules to speak with us about the qualities they'd like to see in Baylor's next president," said Joe Armes, chair of Baylor's Presidential Search Committee. "Before we create a profile or a job description for our next president, we are committed to hearing from Baylor's many constituencies. With a series of engaging and informative listening sessions today, we are off to a very promising start."

Dr. Georgia Green, chair of Faculty Senate and associate dean of the Baylor School of Music, welcomed faculty who attended today's open session in Miller Chapel and introduced members of the Presidential Search Advisory Committee who were in attendance. Armes then introduced members of the Presidential Search Committee who were present.

Search Committee members included Baylor Regents Wes Bailey, Bobby Dagnel, Sue Getterman, Ramiro Peña, Stan Allcorn and Gary Elliston.

In addition to Dr. Green, Advisory Committee members at today's open faculty session were Dr. Jaime Diaz-Granados, Dr. Mikeal C. Parsons and Justice Thomas R. Phillips.

Armes facilitated the faculty session, which focused on:

• What personal characteristics or qualities are most important in Baylor's next president?

• What professional characteristics or qualities are most important in Baylor's next president?

• What particular experience will our new president need to help address the opportunities and challenges Baylor will face in the future?

• What are the distinctive qualities or characteristics that Baylor should emphasize in its efforts to recruit qualified candidates in its search for a university president?

Faculty members provided input on the desired experience, personal and professional qualities for Baylor's next chief executive. Suggestions included the ability to articulate and steward the university's Christian mission, enhance collegiality with faculty and other members of the Baylor family, balance the university's historic emphasis on undergraduate teaching with a growing research and scholarly publication program, provide inspiration as a model of servant-leadership, support shared governance and academic freedom, and have the necessary experience to assume the responsibilities of leading a complex university.

"I'm very appreciative of the faculty response to today's listening session," Green said. "The comments made by numerous faculty members were thoughtful and insightful, and I think will be very helpful to the search and advisory committees as they proceed with this important process. I look forward the next listening session and encourage all faculty to participate as their schedules allow."

The next listening sessions are scheduled for April 22, which will include a second general session for faculty, a general session for students and private listening sessions with the Council of Deans and Waco community leaders. On April 29, the Presidential Search Committee will hold a general listening session with staff. Statewide listening sessions with Baylor alumni are expected to commence in the month of May.

Times and venues for the upcoming general sessions are being confirmed. Additional information, including a form to provide input to the search committees and an audio podcast of today's open faculty session can be found at

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