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Marshall search committee releases preferred qualities list for next president

August 8, 2021

This article was originally posted by Metro News.

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — The search committee responsible for selecting the next Marshall University president has released a list of preferred qualifications for the institution’s next leader.

The list, which the search committee released last week, focuses on multiple ideals, including an ability to appreciate and maintain key elements of Marshall University’s history, authenticity, a readiness to operate transparently, and “a commitment to the relationship among high-quality teaching, scholarship, and service.”

The committee is responsible for finding a successor to Jerome Gilbert, who will leave the institution in July 2022 once his contract expires.

The list stems from multiple points made during listening sessions held through July and early August. Community members, faculty, alumni and others participated in the various events.

“My request is that you continue to engage,” Board of Governors Chairman Patrick Farrell said during last week’s Board of Governors meeting. “‘We are Marshall’ isn’t just something that we say at football games or basketball games; it is something that we should live. And for us to find the next president, it’s going to take everyone of us to engage, to let that person know who we are and what we want to be.”

Farrell discussed some of the findings of the listening sessions — noting shared concerns about resources and growth — but he emphasized the importance of relationship building.

“Dr. Gilbert certainly has a cult-like following of folks that appreciate his presence within the community,” he said.

“They continue to say that is something that we need in addition to building that community in a larger aspect.”

The presidential search committee will hold three additional listening sessions on Aug. 25 with faculty, students and community members. The search committee will review nominations after Labor Day with the goal of inviting finalists for campus visits in October.