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Uof L trustees provide update on new president search; also seek athletic director, basketball coach

By Tom Latek
Kentucky Today

Mary R. Nelson, chair of the University of Louisville Board of Trustees, sent a letter to the UofL community Friday, updating them on the search for a new university president to succeed Neeli Bendapudi.

In the letter, Nelson says they are committed to conducting the search in a fashion that gets them the president who is the best fit for UofL, noting, “A decision like this is too important to rush; we will move at a steady, deliberate pace.”

She said during their meeting last month the board agreed to hire a national search firm to assist them in their decision.

“National firms have the staffing, the expertise and the contacts to find and attract outstanding and diverse candidates from throughout the country, including many potential candidates that we otherwise may not know. We are currently developing the RFP (Request for Proposals) and will be issuing it to prospective firms in the near future.”

Nelson’s letter states that other decisions in terms of who will be involved in the search and how they will participate will be made once the firm is on board. “It is too early to determine how long the process will take, but the plan will be clearly defined and publicly shared.  It will involve selection of a search committee to lead the effort and public participation, including listening tours and a dedicated website through which we will receive comments and provide updates.”

She noted that she and some board members have already begun talking to other universities to learn about their recent searches.  “We will gain valuable knowledge about their successes and any issues that arose, and we will put that information to use as we strive to conduct the most inclusive and successful search possible.”

The board is searching for a replacement for Bendapudi, who stepped down as President of the University of Louisville in December, to become president of Penn State.

The president’s position is one of three high-profile openings at UofL.

Athletics Director Vince Tyra also resigned in December, and Men’s Basketball Coach Chris Mack left last month after he and the school agreed to a $4.8 million buy-out of his contract.

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