University News

Search Committee Recommends Two Finalists for UMass Amherst Chancellor

Victor Woolridge ’80, chair of the UMass Amherst Chancellor Search Committee, announced two finalists for the position in an email to the campus community on Feb. 1. Each candidate will visit the UMass Amherst campus in the coming weeks to meet with students, faculty, staff, and community stakeholders.

That email is as follows: 

As the Chair of the UMass Amherst Chancellor Search Committee, I want to express my thanks for the valuable feedback and perspective that so many of you have offered during the UMass Amherst chancellor search process. I also want to extend my deepest gratitude for the commitment and hard work of Search Committee Vice Chair Laura Haas, Dean of the Manning College of Information and Computer Sciences, and the members of the search committee who invested their diverse perspectives and countless hours of their time in this important effort. 

 Today, I am pleased to report that, based on your input and the Search Committee’s deep commitment to advancing UMass Amherst’s mission. I have forwarded the following finalists for the position (listed in alphabetical order) to President Marty Meehan and the Board of Trustees for their consideration: 
Javier Reyes 
Interim Chancellor 
University of Illinois Chicago 
Paul Tikalsky 
Dean, The College of Engineering, Architecture & Technology 
Oklahoma State University 
I encourage you to visit the Chancellor Search web site for more details on each of the finalists. 
The committee’s task has been clear: to identify outstanding candidates able to lead UMass Amherst, a world-class university that is a catalyst for the socio-economic development of the Commonwealth and an engine of opportunity for generations of individuals. Throughout this process, I have been most impressed by our search committee members’ collaborative spirit and determination as well as the candid feedback we have received from the university’s many stakeholders. 
Our search was comprehensive and inclusive. The 21-member committee held several forums in September which were attended by hundreds of stakeholders. We also received feedback via email and an online form. John Isaacson and Anita Tien of the highly respected executive search firm Isaacson, Miller assisted us throughout this process. They communicated with 108 potential candidates and interviewed 26 of them. As a committee, we interviewed 12 candidates, leading us to today’s designation of finalists. 
Responding to our directive from the Board of Trustees and President Meehan, we set out to identify innovative and bold leaders who are prepared to continue the ascendance that UMass Amherst has enjoyed under Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy’s impressive, decade-long tenure at the university. The committee has met that challenge. President Meehan will soon be sharing more information about opportunities for the Amherst campus community to engage with these finalists and provide additional feedback. 
Thank you again for your steadfast commitment to UMass Amherst.