By Denise Dick
Youngstown State University’s eighth president will earn a $375,000 annual base salary and says he hopes to continue the university’s long list of accomplishments when he takes the helm July 15.
“As the president, I take very seriously building on so many successes at YSU,” Randy Dunn said at a Wednesday news conference inside Tod Hall at YSU.
Tackling decreased enrollment and stabilizing revenue are some of the early challenges he must address, though Dunn stressed that university personnel already have taken steps in those directions.
Cynthia E. Anderson, president since 2010, is retiring June 30. YSU trustees chose Ikram Khawaja, provost and vice president for academic affairs, to act as interim president in the time between Anderson’s departure and Dunn’s arrival.
Anderson tearfully thanked trustees and YSU personnel for what she was able to accomplish during her three years in office. She listed a decrease of $2 million in the university’s base budget between this year and next, expansion of distance learning and student athletes achieving the highest cumulative grade-point average in university history as a few.
“Thank you for a wonderful career and I’ll miss you,” she said.
Anderson’s contract called for her to earn $400,000 the final year of her contract.
In addition to base pay, Dunn’s contract also includes a vehicle, professional dues and travel, entertainment and relocation expenses. He and his wife, Ronda, will live in the Pollock House on Wick Avenue.
According to a university news release, a Chronicle of Higher Education study found that the medial total annual compensation for public university presidents nationally was about $450,000 for 2011-12.
Dr. Sudershan Garg, YSU trustees chairman, signed the contract Wednesday that was hammered out between attorneys representing Dunn and YSU after trustees selected Dunn on May 10.
Dunn has been president of Murray State University in Murray, Ky., since 2006.
“Kentucky’s loss is Ohio’s gain, Murray city’s loss is Youngstown city’s gain and Murray State University’s loss is YSU’s gain,” Garg said.
Dunn said he planned to consult with trustees to determine on what areas of the university’s strategic plan they want him to concentrate his efforts initially.
He plans to continue YSU’s relationship with the community, something he also has done as president at Murray State, he said.