Michigan Tech Board of Trustees Appoints Presidential Search Committee

Campus scene
Campus scene
Michigan Tech leafs out in the spring.

At a special meeting on Friday, June 2, the Michigan Technological University Board of Trustees unanimously appointed members of a Presidential Search Committee.

The 14-member committee will review candidates for a president to succeed Glenn Mroz when he returns to the faculty at the end of June 2018.  

Search committee members are:


David Shonnard, professor of chemical engineering
Brian Barkdoll, professor of civil and environmental engineering
Ashutosh Tiwari, associate professor of chemistry


Jim Baker, executive director of innovation and industry engagement
Darnishia Slade, director of international career education

Academic Administrator

Lorelle Meadows, dean, Pavlis Honors College

Undergraduate Student

Braeton Ardell, mechanical engineering-engineering mechanics

Graduate Student

Lavanya Rajesh Kumar, PhD candidate in cognitive science and human factors

Alumni/Community Member

David Rowe, manager, Systems Control; Michigan Tech Fund Board member

Board Chair Appointee

Carl Anderson, professor emeritus, mechanical engineering-engineering mechanics

Board of Trustees

Bill Johnson, search committee chair
Julie Fream
Brenda Ryan, search committee vice chair
Bob Jacquart

“The selection of a chief executive or president is the most important and significant decision that any university Board can make,” Board Chair Terry Woychowski said.  “We will use a methodical, inclusive and transparent process to fulfill that obligation. While the final selection of a President rests solely with the Board, we have developed a process that is designed to be inclusive of all of our primary constituencies and one that ensures that their inputs are considered and their voices heard. 

“To that end, on May 5, I solicited nominations from various sectors of the university community to serve on the Presidential Search Committee.  The nominations were allocated so as to encompass the greater university community with representation from the Board, undergraduate students, graduate students, faculty, staff, alumni and the local community, along with any other representation that the search committee chair deems necessary and prudent.” 

The Presidential Search Committee is charged with the responsibility to identify and bring forward for the Board’s consideration the best candidates for this critical position, Woychowski explained. They will be expected to present three or four finalists for the presidency to the Board by February 2018, with a goal of selecting a new president by April 2018, to start July 1.

They will be assisted by a presidential search firm. A request for proposal was sent to search firms in early May. The Presidential Search Committee will be asked to recommend two search firms later this month.

The Board reviewed each person’s nomination packet thoroughly, seeking to have representation from colleges and departments across the campus and student representation to provide a balanced and diverse perspective including various viewpoints and professional experiences, Woychowski said.

He thanked the 25 people who volunteered to serve on the search committee. “Serving on this committee requires a commitment of a significant amount of time and brings a measure of inconvenience by its very nature.  Thank you for your willingness to shoulder this burden for the good of our University,” Board chair said.

Those not selected will be invited to serve as an advisory focus group, to provide additional input and a sounding board for the Presidential Search Committee.  “The Board was extremely impressed with the high caliber of the nominations, and we do not want that knowledge base to go untapped,” he noted.

At the April Board of Trustees meeting, Woychowski appointed Board members Julie Fream, Bob Jacquart, Bill Johnson and Brenda Ryan to the Presidential Search Committee.  Johnson has agreed to serve as the search committee chair and Ryan will serve as vice chair.  

To ease the burden on Board members serving on the search committee, Woychowski said that Johnson is stepping down as chair of the Leadership Committee, with Ryan replacing him as chair. Jacquart will step down as chair of the Audit and Finance Committee, and Steve Tomaszewski will become that committee’s chair.

Michigan Technological University is a public research university founded in 1885 in Houghton, Michigan, and is home to more than 7,000 students from 55 countries around the world. Consistently ranked among the best universities in the country for return on investment, Michigan’s flagship technological university offers more than 120 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in science and technology, engineering, computing, forestry, business and economics, health professions, humanities, mathematics, social sciences, and the arts. The rural campus is situated just miles from Lake Superior in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, offering year-round opportunities for outdoor adventure.