University of Montana campus, Missoula

The University of Montana's Main Hall in Missoula is seen in this file photo.

A committee to search for the University of Montana's next provost is seated, incoming UM President Seth Bodnar and Dean Chris Comer announced this week.

"In building the committee, we worked with shared governance leadership with the goal to assemble a representative group of thoughtful individuals who can bring a wealth of perspectives in making this important selection," wrote Bodnar and Comer in an email to campus.

"The committee is a mix of members from the previous provost search, the presidential search, representatives from our shared governance senates, and students, faculty and staff."

The members are:

  • Christopher Comer, dean, College of Humanities & Sciences (search committee chair)
  • David Beck, professor, Department of Native American Studies
  • Jason Begay, assistant professor, School of Journalism
  • Mary-Ann Bowman, associate professor and BSW Program director, School of Social Work
  • Richard Bridges, Regents professor, Department of Biomedical and Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Alex Butler, ASUM Ssnator
  • John Cech, deputy commissioner — Academic, Research, and Student Affairs, Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education
  • John DeBoer, associate professor, School of Theatre and Dance 
  • Stephanie Domitrovich, academic advisor, Department of Health & Human Performance
  • Doug Emlen, professor, Division of Biological Sciences
  • Stacey Gordon, associate professor and director of the Jameson Law Library, Alexander Blewett III School of Law
  • Terri Herron, professor and MAcct Program director, School of Business Administration
  • Marci Lewandowski, Graduate & Professional Student Association
  • Brenna Love, ASUM vice president
  • Shannon O’Brien, dean, Missoula College
  • Andrea Rhoades, program coordinator, Office of Academic Enrichment
  • Matt Riley, chief information officer
  • Sara Rinfret, associate professor and MPA Program director, Department of Political Science
  • Hillary Stowell, director of Academic Fiscal Affairs, Office of the Provost

UM hopes to name the next provost before the end of the academic year, according to the email. Updates will be posted online here.

The campus currently has interim officials in three top cabinet posts. Although he already is involved in UM operations, General Electric executive Bodnar officially will take the helm in January from interim President Sheila Stearns.

In a text this week, Bodnar said he wants to ensure a smooth transition from interim Provost Beverly Edmond to the permanent provost once hired, but UM officials haven't yet decided whether Edmond will continue in an interim capacity through the search. She's served as interim provost since summer 2016.

Rosi Keller has been serving as interim vice president of administration and finance since the start of this semester, and Bodnar said the timeline for this search has not been determined.

In their email update to the campus, Bodnar and Comer said the search for a provost will be expeditious and thorough. The committee plans to bring finalists to campus in early 2018 and will invite the campus community to participate.

"We're excited about the provost search and look forward to finding an excellent and accomplished academic leader and scholar to help chart the course ahead," Bodnar said in a text.

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