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 January 7 Search Update 

CEO Search Update

January 7, 2010

I am sure you are aware that our American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) president/CEO, George Boggs, has announced his retirement effective Dec. 31, 2010. In the coming months, we look forward to honoring Dr. Boggs for his extraordinary achievements. In the meantime, we know he will continue his exemplary leadership of the Association over the next year.

The AACC Board appreciates Dr. Boggs' giving us sufficient time to conduct a national search for our new president/CEO.  The AACC Executive Committee and the AACC Board have fully discussed and approved a search process. On behalf of the Board, I would like to share with you some of the details of the search process.

  1. It is the intention of the Board to conduct an open, inclusive and transparent search that results in a highly diverse and qualified pool of candidates from which we can select the best person to lead our organization in the future. Clearly, we will be cognizant of the confidentiality needs of candidates, but we intend for the process to be open and visible.
  2. It is our intention to contract with a firm to assist the Board with the search.  Again, the Board was clear that this initial part of the process needs to reflect openness and inclusivity. To that end, a request for proposal (RFP) was developed and published on the AACC Web site. The board compiled a list of search firms known to them and solicited names from other higher education associations.  In addition, the RFP was sent to a number of identified search firms. Eleven proposals were received and are under review.
  3. The Executive Committee of the AACC Board will serve as the Screening Committee and the entire Board will be responsible for interviewing finalists and selecting the president/CEO.
  4. We expect the process to be completed by June 30, 2010, allowing time for an orderly transition.

The Executive Committee developed preliminary documents outlining roles and a timeline. As soon as the search firm has been selected and we can finalize the documents for the process, they will be made public. We are also requiring the search firm to conduct a brief survey of the AACC membership to solicit your thoughts on key issues that Community Colleges face over the next several years and the commensurate knowledge, skills, abilities and characteristics you would like to see in our next president/CEO. Please watch for that in the near future.

I know I can speak for the Board when I say that we are humbled by the huge responsibility we carry to assure that this search and the results of the search reflect the values that our colleges hold dear.  We also recognize that there may be a political dimension to this selection of a CEO. However, we will do everything possible to conduct a deliberate and fair search that results in the best decision for AACC and its members.

I will keep you updated on the search as it progresses, and I invite your questions and comments. I can be reached at spildem@lanecc.edu. Thank you.

Best wishes,

Mary Spilde
Chair, AACC Board
On behalf of the Executive Committee

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