Committee forms to help select Virginia Tech’s next president

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Virginia Tech Rector Mike Quillen has appointed a 22-member advisory committee to help the Board of Visitors in its search for a new president. The committee includes Virginia Tech professors, board members, administrators and students.

Virginia Tech’s president Charles W. Steger announced earlier this month that he would retire as soon as a replacement was found.

“The committee and our external search firm will help garner input from various constituency groups around the state over the next several months," Quillen said in a statement. "We will have meetings in Blacksburg and elsewhere in Virginia. We want to hear from students, alumni, supporters, and actually, anyone interested in Virginia Tech’s future. We will work quickly but expeditiously. I am confident that we can find an outstanding candidate."

Input from the university community and larger public will be collected through electronic surveys, the presidential search website and email submissions to The board also plans to hold forums for students, faculty, staff, alumni and supporters.

The committee members include:

George Nolen, Virginia Tech Board of Visitors, committee chair;
John Lee, Virginia Tech Board of Visitors;
Deborah Petrine, Virginia Tech Board of Visitors, committee vice chair / communications;
John Rocovich, Virginia Tech Board of Visitors, committee vice chair / compensation and contracts;
Stephanie Adams, professor of engineering education;
Erica Bennett, undergraduate student, electrical engineering;
Jacqueline Bixler, professor and chair, Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures;
Ben Davenport, Virginia Tech Foundation Board and past rector, Virginia Tech Board of Visitors;
Dennis Dean, professor and director, Fralin Life Science Institute and Virginia Bioinformatics Institute;
Patricia Dove, professor of Science, Department of Geosciences
Robert Dunay, professor, School of Architecture and Design
Jeff Earley, assistant provost for finance
Jesus de la Garza, professor of civil and environmental engineering
Alan Grant, dean, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
Justin Graves, graduate student, education leadership and policy studies
Sarah Karpanty, associate professor of fisheries and wildlife
Arthur Keown, professor of finance
Anne Khademian, professor, Center for Public Administration and Policy, and director, School of Public and International Affairs
William Knocke, associate vice president for research programs
X.J. Meng, professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences and Pathology
Gen. Lance Smith (ret.), president, Virginia Tech Alumni Association
Sue Teel, financial services specialist, Department of Physics

The first committee meeting is scheduled for June 2.

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