AAUP Presidential Search Evaluation Committee Report
When Dr. Massey announced his retirement in the fall of 2019, the Executive Committee of the AAUP Chapter undertook developing a presidential profile for potential successors. The committee brainstormed myriad attributes that were then presented and discussed in the January Chapter meeting. The Executive Committee modified the list of attributes based on this input and began to determine a strategic, informed, and representative evaluation process. In February a team of 15 faculty comprised of the Executive Committee and Chapter members met with the national AAUP representatives and decided on a “Presidential Scorecard” format and outlined the evaluation procedures to focus on qualitative and quantitative measures. The hope was that the Presidential Scorecard would provide the Chapter with a systematic approach to collecting evaluators’ observations and a method for offering faculty’s perspective in the Presidential Search Process. In March, the Chapter held a survey of all faculty to determine if the proposed list of attributes for the incoming president was sufficient and to allow for more discussion. Because of the COVID-19 social distancing guidelines requiring a virtual open-forum, the Chapter surveyed the faculty: 1) to determine if they supported a representative approach to asking questions; 2) to choose the representatives to ask the questions; and 3) suggest questions. The results of the survey were to 1) agree to a representative form of questioning; 2) Sarah Mallonee, Bill Tyler, and Teena White; and 3) 201 questions submitted.
The elected representatives were joined by members of the Chapter’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee to analyze and write questions. Thus the IRSC Chapter of the AAUP Presidential Search Evaluation Committee (Evaluation Committee) consisted of Silvia Bustamante and Marvin Hobson from the Diversity Committee and Sarah Mallonee, Bill Tyler, and Teena White as the elected representatives. Carl Clark served as the Officer liaison and research analyst support. The Evaluation Committee has represented faculty through the search process and three (Sarah Mallonee, Bill Tyler, and Teena White) were the designated faculty to ask questions of the finalists during the Faculty Forum. Questions asked during the Faculty Forum focused on the areas of interest submitted through the faculty survey and not sufficiently addressed in the semi-finalist round of interviews.
In order to faithfully execute their role in this process, the Evaluation Committee has completed the following steps:
- reviewed the submitted questions and analyzed the data from the surveys,
- organized questions into categories and areas of interest,
- prioritized topics to create an overall scorecard to objectively rate the candidates,
- reviewed candidates’ application materials,
- attended and scored candidates during semi-finalist interviews,
- asked questions during Faculty Forum portion of the finalist interviews,
- attended and scored candidates during the finalist interviews, and
- arrived at consensus evaluations for four finalists.
The Evaluation Committee finalized the scorecards and delivered committee observations during the Public Comment portion of the Special Meeting of the IRSC District Board of Trustees:
Good morning. Thank you Chair Davis and the District Board of Trustees.
I am Sarah Mallonee, and I would like to introduce you to the AAUP representatives who participated all along the way with this search process: Silvia Bustamante, Marvin Hobson, Bill Tyler, and Teena White. The Chapter started its involvement in this process by surveying all full-time faculty to arrive at our current procedure and results. Faculty were surveyed for the following input:
- to determine the attributes needed in the next president,
- to approve this representative approach to participating,
- and to submit questions.
The AAUP Presidential Search Evaluation Committee analyzed the survey data and developed our metrics. This Committee scored candidates through the semi-finalist and finalist stages based on their application materials and interviews from both rounds. We participated in the Faculty Forum in order to gain insight on the attributes of particular interest to the faculty. We are honored and grateful for the opportunity to share our comments today. The summary results, presented in alphabetical order, are:
Dr. Towuanna Porter Brannon earned a score of 79 out of 100 possible points. Brannon’s strengths include her intimate knowledge of diversity and cultural issues, student success, enrollment, and faculty support. Her weaknesses include her lack of experience in making political connections on the local, state, and federal levels, and her limited teaching experience. Brannon’s greatest strength is her holistic view of student needs and her understanding of working conditions. Overall, we believe the faculty of IRSC could work with Dr. Porter Brannon.
Dr. Christina Hart earned a score of 70 out of 100 possible points. Hart’s strengths include her long-term commitment to education and the local area, familiarity with educational leadership at all levels, and her dedication to IRSC. Her weaknesses include her lack of knowledge and respect for shared governance and her lack of awareness of faculty concerns. The greatest concern for faculty was that after more than 30 years of working at IRSC, her answer to many faculty questions was “I need to learn more about this issue.” Her greatest strength is her commitment to student success as her number one priority. Overall, we believe the faculty of IRSC could work with Dr. Christina Hart.
Dr. Timothy Moore earned a score of 88 out of 100 possible points. Moore’s strengths include his direct and thoughtful planning style, an entrepreneurial spirit applied to educational initiatives, and his wide range of experiences in education and the private sector, including United States Army service. His weakness is primarily his lack of experience at the state-college level. His greatest assets are his stated commitments to academic freedom, shared governance, and his diverse experiences and ideas. Overall, we believe the faculty of IRSC could work with Dr. Timothy Moore.
Dr. Ian Neuhard earned a score of 78 out of 100 possible points. Neuhard’s strengths include his communication skills and positive management style. His weakness is primarily his minimal teaching experience at the college level. His most influential strength is his combined Florida College System experience: IRSC and another Florida state college plus experience in state-level governance positions in the Division of Florida Colleges. Overall, we believe the faculty of IRSC could work with Dr. Ian Neuhard.
Thank you again for the opportunity to participate in the Presidential Search process. We look forward to and remain committed to cultivating IRSC’s stellar next chapter.