President Jim Wagner announced last week the membership
of a search advisory committee charged with conducting a national
search to locate candidates for a new provost.
The need for such a search became critical when former interim provost
Woody Hunter announced in August that he would begin a sabbatical
on Sept. 1. The provostship has not had a permanent occupant since
Rebecca Chopp left Emory in the spring of 2001.
Wagner said the committee will be charged with finding “two
to four stellar candidates” for the position, from which the
finalist will be selected and recruited with additional input and
support from the University community. He said he hopes the committee
will complete its work in “just a few months” and that
Emory should have a new provost well before the beginning of the
2004–05 academic year.
The committee members include:
• Kent Alexander,
senior vice president and general counsel.
• Ron Braithwaite,
professor, Rollins School of Public Health.
Bropleh, Emory College senior, president of the
Student Government Association.
Brownley, Goodrich C. White Professor of English.
Carpenter, Charles Howard Candler Professor of English,
• Ron Gould,
Goodrich C. White Professor of Mathematics and Computer Science.
• Tom Lawley,
dean, School of Medicine.
• Mike Mandl,
executive vice president for finance and administration.
Paul, dean, Emory College.
Sheth, Charles H. Kellstadt Professor of Marketing.
Worthman, Samuel C. Dobbs Professor of Anthropology.
“The committee’s work is the first phase of the recruiting
process,” Wagner said. “The finalists they put forward
will have additional exposure to a broad variety of the Emory community,
all of whom will be invited to share their impressions and recommendations
Speaking to a meeting of the Faculty Council Sept. 16, Wagner said
he would make the final decision on the candidate to be presented
to the Board of Trustees. “After stage two, the process becomes
very undemocratic,” he said. “That’s the way it
needs to be; that’s where I earn my keep.”
Asked what qualities he would be looking for in a provost, Wagner
cited experience in academic leadership and a set of values consistent
with both Emory’s and his own; the president and the provost
spend a great deal of time together, he said, and “it helps
when dreaming about new horizons or addressing difficult issues
to know that our ideas will come from a common foundation of shared
“At this particular ‘season’ of Emory University,
this person will need to help champion Emory’s leadership
in the ‘new’ liberal learning, working closely with
the college and Dean Paul; will provide leadership for graduate
and professional education; and will partner closely with our executive
vice president for health affairs, Michael Johns, to help advance
research and education programming in the health sciences,”
At this point, Wagner said he will not appoint another interim provost
to serve until the search is completed, relying on the President’s
Cabinet, himself and staff in the provost’s office to perform
the necessary duties. However he said he may revisit the issue as
the search unfolds.