On July 22, the Northwest Missouri State University Board of Regents selected a Houston-based search firm to assist the institution with recruiting its next president.

Regents will partner on the search process with Anthem Executive, which is ranked among the top higher education search firms in the US by Hunt Scanlon, an authority on executive search firms.

The vote occurred during a Zoom special session involving all of the Regent’s seven current members. An ad hoc selection committee comprised of Regents John Moore, Roxanna Swaney, Jason Klindt and Mel Tjeerdsma had been working since June 24 to evaluate and interview potential search firms that responded to a Northwest request for proposals.

Regents also elected Moore, who serves as Regent chair, to chair the presidential search committee.

“Our committee went through a very comprehensive process in selecting the search firm,” Moore said. “While we were impressed by several firms, Anthem Executive stood out for their experience, their processes for obtaining stakeholder input to develop the candidate profile, their methods of sourcing and reviewing candidates prior to submitting them to the search committee, and their search success rate.”

According to Anthem Executive, it has a search completion rate of 100 percent during the last three years and 99 percent during the past five years, compared to the search industry standard of 65 percent. With more than three decades of nationwide executive search and consulting experience, it has successfully completed more than 500 searches for presidents, chancellors and CEO-level roles with institutions of all levels and sizes.

“They provided a very polished written proposal and were equally polished during the interview we conducted,” Moore said. “They displayed interpersonal skills that are consistent with Northwest’s culture and approach. They were down-to-earth, yet very professional. We came away confident they would represent us well to candidates and all participants in the process.”

During the search process, Anthem Executive will gather input from the campus search committee and other key stakeholders to build a profile of the university’s ideal candidate, finalize a comprehensive search strategy, conduct a thorough market analysis, identify viable contenders for the role, and place regional and national advertising to attract a diverse candidate pool. It will then screen candidates and arrange interviews and campus visits in addition to helping onboard the successful candidate.

The Regents also addressed a concern brought to the group by Regent Deborah Roach about allowing for the general public to be involved during the president selection process. After several comments, Moore decided to table any action until the August Regents’ meeting, August 4.

The next president will succeed Dr. John Jasinski, who departed the university June 30 after 13 years in the role. Interim President Dr. Clarence Green is leading the institution until the next president is in place.

An update was also given about the new stairwell project at Bearcat Stadium. It seems the project has hit structure snags with the underground as well as the stair structure itself. Because of these new findings, the project may not be completed by Bearcat football season. So a set of temporary stairs have been secured at a cost of $36,000 for the first month and $12,000 each additional month.

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