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Presidential search committee selected

The members of the Presidential Search and Screen Committee, which will select Seton Hall's next president, were revealed on Sept. 10 via an e-mail from committee chair Joseph LaSala.

The committee was enforced after University President Msgr. Sheeran revealed in June that he will be stepping down following Seton Hall's spring 2010 semester. Dr. Francis Lazarus,, a regent and former president of Dallas University, was appointed vice chair. Regent appointees were Kent Manahan, Donna O'Brien, and Monsignor James Cafone.

Additional appointees were Dr. Karen Boroff, Albert Cooley, Jr., John Jacobi, Dr. King Mott, Rosario Reyes and Steve Stoute Boroff is the Dean of the Stillman School of Business, while Cooley is a current Seton Hall Law student.

Jacobi is the director of the School of Law, and Mott is an associate professor and faculty senate chair. Reyes is the associate dean of students for the Department of Community Development and Stoute is a graduate of Seton Hall and a former member of the Board of Regents. Susan McGarry Basso, associate vice president for Human Resources, will serve as staff support for the committee.

"All of these individuals are knowledgeable about Seton Hall and committed to its Catholic educational mission," LaSala said in the e-mail, "They have been selected in order to provide broad representation from across the community and will act in the university's best interests to recommend those candidates who would best serve the university."

The Chair of the Board of Regents, Kurt Borowsky, appointed LaSala to chair the Presidential Search and Screen Committee in July. According to LaSala's e-mail, the committee held their inaugural meeting on Sept. 3. Issacson Miller, a search firm that works to find leaders for organizations, will be assisting the committee in the search and screen process.

The president of the Student Government Association, Leonard Jones, said that while he was not yet appointed to the committee, he attended a meeting with "numerous other students," and representatives from Issacson Miller. Jones said that he expressed what he felt the students might need from the new president at the meeting. Jones said he felt that the president should have "a large business sense and a family sense so that he is approachable and compassionate to students."

During the meeting, Jones also said he learned that being president of the university is much like being in customer service. "We (the students) are the customers and the president has to help serve our needs," Jones said.

He notes that additionally, the new president must be a priest and have many years of experience in higher education. "It's going to be an intense process," Jones said, adding that there were many levels a candidate would have to go through before being named president. "We're in the very beginning stages."

According to Jones, no strict timetable was set in the meeting, but since Sheeran will be stepping down in June, the committee will be appointing someone prior to that time. He said that students will be allowed to have input in the process, noting that some students have already put Rev. John Dennehy name in for consideration.

Once the list of candidates is narrowed, Jones said that there will be opportunities for students to speak with the applicants. "I encourage students to come speak with the candidates…to see how they fit in our community," Jones said. LaSala echoes Jones' call for student input on the committee's Web site. "We are drawing on ideas and suggestions submitted by members of the Seton Hall community, and we thank those who have taken the time to provide their input so far."

LaSala was not immediately available for comment, and other members of the committee said that they are not at liberty to speak about the committee.

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