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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


UA presidential candidates announced

Yash Gupta
Yash Gupta

The Arizona Board of Regents announced the final four candidates for the UA presidency yesterday, which could end the search process more quickly than anticipated.

Tom Campbell, Deborah Freund, Yash P. Gupta and Robert N. Shelton have been announced as the final candidates and will be visiting the UA campus for interviews and community forums over the next week.

Students are encouraged to take advantage of the opportunity to communicate directly with the final candidates for the presidential selection, said Regent Fred Boice, chair of the search committee.

The Presidential Search Committee will interview the four candidates in a closed executive session today and tomorrow, Boice said.

Candidates will also participate in various forums, where they will receive campus and community member feedback, Boice said. The forums will be held from Friday to Jan. 25.

? Tom Campbell is dean and a professor of business of the Haas School of Business at University of California, Berkeley. He took leave in 2004 to become California state finance director, although he has returned to UC Berkeley. Campbell has also served five terms in the U.S. Congress and is a former California state senator.

? Deborah Freund has been vice chancellor for academic affairs and provost of Syracuse University since Aug. 1, 1999. Freund is responsible for all academic decision-making for the university. She is also a distinguished professor of public administration and economics at Syracuse. From 1994 to 1999, Freund served as vice chancellor for academic affairs and dean of the faculties at Indiana University, Bloomington. Freund is primarily an internationally known health economist.

? Yash P. Gupta is dean and professor of operations management at the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California. Gupta has held dean positions at several universities, including the University of Washington and University of Colorado at Denver. Gupta received a “”University of Colorado Medal”” from the Colorado regents for exemplary service to the university.

? Robert N. Shelton has served as executive vice chancellor and provost at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill since Feb. 1, 2001. Shelton is also a professor of physics at the university. Shelton was vice provost for research in the University of California Office of the President and previously served as vice chancellor for research at the University of California, Davis.

Ben Graff, a student regent and member of the search committee, said he is pleased with the candidates for UA’s presidency.

“”I think we have a great sample of candidates coming to campus,”” said Graff, who mentioned that two of the final candidates also happened to be on his top-10 list of candidates who had students as a priority.

Graff said he is very pleased all four candidates have decided to go public, because it gives students the chance to “”weigh the good and bad aspects of the candidates publicly.””

Graff and acting student body President Erin Hertzog will be the only students allowed in the closed interview process, Graff said.

Hertzog, the Associated Students of the University of Arizona executive vice president, is acting as student body president during Cade Bernsen’s leave of absence.

“”I’m interested in how (the candidates) react to students,”” Graff said. “”If they are avoidant or don’t seem to be interested, that’s very easy to pick up on.””

Graff encouraged students to attend the forums and said he hopes students can come up with a first choice for candidacy.

“”Although it’s a very short timeline to receive feedback from all interested parties, it will be very possible and very reasonable to coordinate student feedback,”” Graff said.

Hertzog will be moderating the student forums, which will be held from 2:15 p.m. to 3:15 p.m. Friday through Jan. 25, Hertzog said.

“”I want the students to get their voice out there,”” Hertzog said.

Hertzog said her duties would primarily consist of introducing candidates to the students, and “”just keeping everything organized.””

ASUA is still organizing the forums, and there is a possibility that students will be able to write down a list of their questions so they don’t have to wait in long lines, Hertzog said.

Students who attend the forums will also have the opportunity to fill out a feedback form which will be given directly to the Arizona Board of Regents. Students’ feedback will also be used in a student government statement, which will be given to the regents, Graff said.

Each candidate will be attending a breakfast with President Peter Likins as well as meeting with many different members of the community, according to a press release.

Candidates will meet with diversity groups, shared governance leadership and the academic council, and they will also have a dinner with the President’s cabinet, according to a press release.

Likins, who has been president since 1997, is scheduled to retire this summer.

The UA has never had a female president and the next president will be the 19th president of the university, according to the UA Web site.

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