YSU president search plan to get underway soon
By Denise Dick
Youngstown State University trustees could meet as early as next week to begin the process to select a new university president.
Randy J. Dunn, president since July, announced this week that he has accepted the same job at Southern Illinois University. His resignation from YSU is effective Aug. 16.
“We’ll probably hire a search firm,” said Dr. Sudershan Garg, chairman of the YSU trustees.
He said the board probably would select AGB Search, the same executive search firm YSU employed in the search that resulted in Dunn’s selection.
Dr. Garg, a local oncologist, said since Dunn resigned after only seven months on the job, the firm may agree to do a second search for free.
“We would still have to pay for expenses,” he added.
With expenses including refreshments, dinners, campus visits and lodging for the three finalists as well as payments to the first, the university spent about $109,000 in the 2013 presidential search.
“I’ve already received one application,” Dr. Garg said which he said he would pass along to the search firm.
News that Dunn was in the running for another position caught trustees, and many others at the university, off guard.
Dr. Garg, however, said the university wants to end the relationship amicably. As required by his contract, Dun’s resignation gives 180 days’ notice. If the university names a successor and wants him to leave before then, he will.
Dunn’s contract also allowed trustees to terminate his employment with a majority vote and with one year’s severance pay.
Before coming to YSU, Dunn served six years as president of Murray State University in Kentucky. Before that, he was state superintendent of public instruction for Illinois and worked as a professor at SIU before that. He is an Illinois native.
Dunn told members of the media after announcing his departure that he would continue to work on initiatives and plans he started while he remains at YSU.
Among the things he plans to address is contract negotiations with unions representing university faculty and classified employees. Both unions’ contracts expire this year.