The leader of the new search committee for the University of Iowa president says the first failed search has not soured interest in the issue. David Johnsen, the dean of the school’s College of Dentistry, was named in late December to lead the new search. Johnsen says the responses he got after being appointed has been "overwhelmingly encouraging" with people asking how they can help.
Johnsen says the controversy surrounding the first search has also not appeared to dull the interest of candidates for the job. Johnsen says he’s already getting phone calls from people who want to be considered for the job. Johnsen says he thinks Iowa’s position as a Big Ten university is very appealing. The Board of Regents today approved five more members of the search committee and those members will fill out the committee.
Johnsen says July 1st is still the target date for completing the search.He says the search is up and running and they want to set an ambitious deadline, so the July date is still the target. The lack of on-campus interviews was something that drew criticism in the first search that was aborted in November. Johnsen says they will discuss those interviews. Johnsen says the committee will be given the latitude to make the decision on on-campus interviews and he says they will have "a lot of discussions on that point."
Regents president Michael Gartner was asked how the new search will be different. Gartner says they’ve gone through one process and "we’ve all learned from that." Gartner says the first process worked in a way and they all learned from it, and he expects the university to get a great president. Gartner was asked what the Regents learned from the failed search.
Gartner says they’ve learned how conditions today are different than they were three, five, ten, 15 years ago in other presidential searches. Gartner says they’ve learned what candidates expectations are. The new search committee does not have any Regents on it.