Baylor Faculty and Staff:
I am pleased to announce that Michael K. McLendon, Ph.D., has agreed to serve as Baylor University’s interim provost, with a start date of July 1. Dr. McLendon is no stranger to Baylor, having completed his undergraduate degree here and serving as dean of the School of Education since July 2015.
Holder of the Fred and Edith Hale Endowed Professorship in Higher Education Leadership and Policy, Dr. McLendon is a noted higher education scholar who regularly advises governors, legislatures and national and state organizations on topics ranging from governance and college costs to ways of improving student success, financial sustainability and institutional effectiveness in higher education. Dr. McLendon also has in-depth knowledge of the role of the provost, as his scholarly work has focused extensively on postsecondary governance, finance and policy.
Before coming to Baylor in 2015, Dr. McLendon held the Harold and Annette Simmons Endowed Centennial Chair and served as the academic associate dean at Southern Methodist University’s Simmons School of Education and Human Development. Previously, he was the executive associate dean, undergraduate dean and chief of staff at Vanderbilt University’s Peabody College of Education and Human Development, where he served for 13 years as a professor of public policy and higher education.
Dr. McLendon earned his Ph.D. in higher education policy from the University of Michigan, an M.S. in higher education from Florida State University and a B.A. in political science from Baylor.
I plan to continue listening sessions with many of you within the academic community and administration into the fall semester to develop a profile for the permanent provost position. We plan to constitute a search committee later in the fall, as well as engage an external search firm to guide us with a national search for this important position.
Please join me in congratulating Dr. McLendon for his new role within the University, as well as welcoming him to the Provost’s Office. He will name an interim dean for the School of Education shortly. I look forward to working closely with Dr. McLendon during this interim period as we build on Baylor’s academic reputation and position the University for the future.
Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D.