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Presidential Selection Committee hosts community input sessions for Emory staff

Emory staff members are invited to a meeting with the Presidential Selection Committee on Friday, Jan. 22. Two sessions are offered, one at 11:30 a.m. and the second at 3 p.m. Both sessions are scheduled for one hour and take place in Cox Hall Ballroom 3.

Allison Dykes, vice president and university secretary, and Peter Barnes, vice president for human resources, explained the goals of the community input sessions in an email distributed Jan. 19 to all staff members.

Their message follows:

Dear Emory Staff:

Input from members of the Emory community is a critical element in a successful presidential selection process. The Presidential Selection Committee (PSC) and the search consultant it has engaged seek an understanding of the needs and aspirations of our faculty, students, staff, alumni, physicians, and other important stakeholders to identify the best presidential candidates and ensure the success of the next president.

Since President Wagner announced his retirement in September 2015, members of the Emory University Board of Trustees and others have developed a framework and a process for the search for a successor. The Presidential Selection Committee has put that process into action. A vital first step is for members of the PSC to engage in intensive listening and dialogue sessions with the Emory community and stakeholders about what matters most to the community regarding the university, so the PSC in turn can represent that to future candidates. Numerous community and stakeholder meetings and sessions are being scheduled to allow ample opportunity for input. To that end, the PSC has scheduled a meeting for all Emory staff on January 22 at 11:30-12:30 and another at 3:00-4:00pm in Cox Hall Ballroom 3. The PSC will provide beverages and light refreshments. You may choose to attend either session. Managers are encouraged to work with staff to facilitate engagement in these opportunities as schedules permit.

To help guide the discussion, below are some questions for consideration. The open dialog at the meetings, and additional feedback and responses to questions on the presidential selection website, will be used to update the FAQ on the website and will facilitate the work of the PSC.

  • What do you see as the major challenges and opportunities facing Emory over the likely tenure of the next president?
  • We know that the world of higher education is becoming increasingly competitive. What do you see as Emory’s strongest competitive advantage?
  • How would you describe Emory’s culture today and how would you like to see it change?
  • What do you think needs to be preserved at Emory and why?
  • By the end of the next president’s term, what should be different about Emory?
  • Do you have any advice for the Presidential Selection Committee?

The presidential selection website also provides an opportunity to ask questions not only about the search, but the process leading up to and during the search. To submit your questions you may go to: Presidential Selection Questions. Answers to your questions will be incorporated into the site’s FAQ.

If you are unable to attend either engagement session, you are still invited to contact the PSC with your thoughts on the credentials, experience, qualities, and values they should consider for the next president via either the Providing Input feature of the presidential selection website or a direct email to The Presidential Selection Committee members will read all of this input directly.

Thank you, and we look forward to hearing from you on Jan. 22 as we all work together toward Emory’s future.


Allison Dykes, Vice President and University Secretary

Peter Barnes, Vice President for Human Resources

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