Presidential Search

Announcements and other information related to Bryant University's presidential search

Position specification

For further information and questions regarding Bryant University’s presidential search, contact BryantPresident@spencerstuart.com.

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September 13, 2019

Dear Bryant Community Members,

We are writing with another update on the search for the next president of Bryant University. Thanks to the engagement of many of you, we are making excellent progress.

Starting in July, our team at Spencer Stuart met with a wide range of Bryant stakeholders to understand what is distinctive about our school and the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead for the next leader. In addition to one-on-one interviews, the team engaged in open listening sessions with Bryant faculty, staff, and students. These sessions provided valuable input that has become the foundation of the “position specification,” or job description, for the next president. Thank you to all who participated in these sessions.

If you have not yet had a chance to provide input to the search process, we strongly encourage you to send us your thoughts and suggestions as soon as possible. You may send your input directly to this confidential email address: BryantPresident@spencerstuart.com. Alternatively, you may use the online survey, which provides an anonymous way to share your ideas with the Spencer Stuart team. All input is confidential and will be shared with the search committee without attribution.

The Spencer Stuart team has also been reaching out to identify potential candidates. Spencer Stuart has made initial, exploratory contact with more than 150 women and men, as either sources of nominees or as potential candidates. And while we are still in the very early stages, the search committee has begun to assess potential candidates.

Finally, we are planning to have the position specification finalized next week.

The search process is on track and we are making good progress. At the same time, we remain open and interested in your ideas and perspectives on the next leader of Bryant. We encourage you to send your input to Spencer Stuart.

Thank you for your engagement in this process.

Sincerely,

William J. Conaty ’67 and Dr. Patricia O’Brien P’15
Bryant University Board of Trustees

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August 16, 2019

One of the critical components of the presidential search process is the solicitation and receipt of input from the Bryant community to capture hopes, concerns, perspectives, and various points of view relating to Bryant’s search for a new president. Spencer Stuart, the executive search firm that has been engaged by the Board of Trustees to assist with this search, will be conducting outreach meetings in September to continue its work of capturing and compiling community input.

Open sessions with representatives from Spencer Stuart for staff, faculty and students have been scheduled as follows:

Tuesday, September 10:  Papitto / Heritage Room, Fisher Student Center

  • 1 p.m. - Staff
  • 2 p.m. - Faculty
  • 3:30 p.m. - Students

Wednesday, September 11:  Janikies Auditorium, Unistructure

  • 9 a.m. - Staff
  • 10 a.m. - Faculty
  • 11 a.m. - Students

Attendance is strictly voluntary, but you are encouraged to attend one of the meetings for your community constituent group.  Please mark your calendars.  The meetings are not expected to take more than 50-60 minutes.

So that you can think about the topic in advance, here are some of the open-ended questions the Spencer Stuart consultants plan to ask:

  • What makes Bryant University distinctive?
  • What are the opportunities and challenges facing Bryant University? Another way to consider, what might be different about Bryant in five to six years that could make it an even better institution?
  • What are the characteristics, attributes, skills, and experience you are looking for in the next President?
  • What advice do you have for us?

If you are unable to attend one of these meetings, please note that you may submit your input via email to BryantPresident@spencerstuart.com. Additionally, a drop box will be set up in the meeting rooms on September 10 and 11 for you to submit your input via hard copy.

Your input is important to the process, so on behalf of Bill and Pat, we hope you’re able to attend.  

Thank you,

Tim Paige, Vice President for Human Resources

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July 11, 2019

Dear Bryant University Faculty,

One of the critical components of the presidential search process is the solicitation of input from the Bryant community to capture hopes, concerns, perspectives, and various points of view relating to Bryant’s search for a new president. Spencer Stuart, the firm that has been engaged for this search, will be conducting a series of outreach meetings over the summer and into the fall to capture and compile this input.

The first Spencer Stuart sessions for faculty have been scheduled to take place from 1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. on Thursday, July 25, 2019. They will be held in the Quinlan/Brown Academic Innovation Center, rooms 235 and 237. If you are unable to attend, please know that further sessions for faculty will be scheduled later in the summer and into the fall so that all have the opportunity to have their voices be heard.

The open-ended questions the Spencer Stuart consultants plan to ask include:

We are also pleased to announce the appointment of 11 distinguished individuals to join us on the Presidential Search Committee. As co-chairs of the committee, we are very grateful to the following individuals for their commitment to Bryant and their willingness to serve in this important role:

• What makes Bryant University distinctive?

• What are the opportunities and challenges facing Bryant University? What might be different about Bryant in five to six years that could make it an even better institution?

• What are the characteristics, attributes, skills, and experience you are looking for in the next president?

• What advice do you have for us?

Sincerely,

William J. Conaty ’67 and Dr. Patricia O’Brien P’15
Bryant University Board of Trustees

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June 28, 2019

Dear Bryant community members,

We are pleased to provide you with an important update on the search for the new president of Bryant University. The Steering Committee has completed its work of selecting an executive search firm to be the University’s partner in the important process of identifying a new president for Bryant. We are pleased to announce that, after a comprehensive review, the firm of Spencer Stuart has been selected as our search partner. Spencer Stuart is a preeminent global executive search firm with a proven track record of success coupled with extensive experience leading senior-level searches in higher education. We are extremely pleased to be partnering with them, as we have strong confidence in their ability to help us conduct a highly effective search process.

We are also pleased to announce the appointment of 11 distinguished individuals to join us on the Presidential Search Committee. As co-chairs of the committee, we are very grateful to the following individuals for their commitment to Bryant and their willingness to serve in this important role:

• Tim Barton '88, member of the Board of Trustees

• Bob Calabro '88, member of the Board of Trustees

• Lisa Churchville '09H, member of the Board of Trustees

Diya Das, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Management

Kirsten Hokeness, Ph.D., Professor of Biology

• Joe Paparelli '17, member of the Board of Trustees, recent Alumni Trustee

Christopher Roethlein, Ph.D., Professor of Management

• Ed Santos '81, P’18, member of the Board of Trustees

• Peg Van Bree, MHA, Dr.PH, member of the Board of Trustees

• David Weinstein, member of the Board of Trustees

• Rita Williams-Bogar '76, member of the Board of Trustees

Additionally, Tim Paige, Vice President for Human Resources, will serve as an ex-officio member of the search committee. We look forward to convening the search committee in the near future and launching our work in support of this important and exciting effort.

As we communicated earlier, the process we now will embark upon – with Spencer Stuart’s assistance – will include the solicitation of input from the Bryant community. This effort will encompass a series of on-campus meetings with community members beginning in July and extending into the fall. Please watch for additional information regarding the search process and opportunities for the Bryant community to participate. Additionally, any member of the Bryant community is invited to submit questions, comments, or input directly to Spencer Stuart at BryantPresident@spencerstuart.com.

We look forward to the important work ahead. Please watch for periodic updates from us as the work progresses. Thank you very much.

Sincerely,

William J. Conaty ’67 and Dr. Patricia O’Brien P’15
Bryant University Board of Trustees

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June 5, 2019

Dear Bryant community members,

Now that the commencement exercises for the Class of 2019 have brought the 2018-19 Academic Year to a close, the Bryant University Board of Trustees has turned to the important work of identifying a successor to President Ron Machtley.  As you know, Ron and Kati recently announced their intention to step down from their roles in June 2020.

The Board is committed to an open and inclusive search process. We intend to engage the entire Bryant community – faculty, staff, students and alumni – to help us identify the skills and personal qualities the next president of Bryant should have. We will also be soliciting your thinking on the challenges facing higher education, and Bryant in particular.

The Board has established a Steering Committee to implement best practices for the search process. Its co-chairs are Bill Conaty, chair of the Bryant Board and former senior vice president of corporate human resources at General Electric, and Dr. Patricia O’Brien, chair of the Academic & Faculty Affairs Committee and associate provost for budget and planning at Boston University. The other members are Dr. Margaret Van Bree, vice-chair of the Academic & Faculty Affairs Committee and president of Rhode Island Hospital and Hasbro Children’s Hospital, and David Weinstein, chair of the Compensation Committee and former executive vice president of Fidelity Investments.

Working in conjunction with David Beirne, chair of the Nominating Committee and general partner of X10 Capital, the Steering Committee will establish a Presidential Search Committee, composed of trustees and faculty representatives. The Search Committee will be charged with making a recommendation to the Board of Trustees regarding the next president.

In the next few weeks, the Steering Committee will interview executive search firms and select the firm best equipped to be its partner in this year-long process.  The search firm will also help the Board solicit input from the Bryant community.  We will use this process to develop a position description that will enable us to choose the next president of Bryant from what we expect to be a very strong pool of candidates.

We are about to embark on a process that will certainly bring change to our community, but change brings opportunity and renewed vision for Bryant’s future.

We will provide additional information in the coming weeks. Before then, questions or comments may be directed to Tim Paige, Vice President for Human Resources (tpaige@bryant.edu).

Sincerely,

Bryant University Board of Trustees