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Agricultural News

Agriculture Strongly Represented on OSU Presidential Search Committee to Find Burns Hargis Successor

Wed, 25 Nov 2020 14:34:52 CST

Agriculture Strongly Represented on OSU Presidential Search Committee to Find Burns Hargis Successor Thirty-six individuals representing a diverse group comprised of faculty, staff, students, alumni, community members, and regents will serve as members of the Oklahoma State University Presidential Search Committee. The committee will conduct a national search to find a successor to OSU President Burns Hargis, who recently announced his plans to retire in July 2021. Upon his retirement, Hargis will have served 13 years as president of OSU.

“We have brought together OSU campus and community stakeholders from inside and outside our university to identify a diverse and impressive pool of candidates to recommend for the presidency of our great land-grant institution,” said Rick Davis, Chair of the OSU/A&M Board of Regents.

At least nine of the Search Committee members have direct ties to agriculture and or the Ferguson College of Agriculture. That includes Regents Chairman Rick Davis of Guthrie, who graduated with an Ag Economics Degree, Dr. Beatrix Haggard, an Assistant Professor in the Plant and Soil Science Department in the Ferguson College of Ag and Dr. Pamela Lovern who is an Associate Professor in the College of Vet Medicine. Among the students who will be a part of the search effort is Altus, Oklahoma Ferguson College of Ag student Luke Muller, who is majoring in the Plant and Soil Science department. In the at large list- the Ag ties are very strong- including Kay Ferguson (she and her husband Larry are the Fergusons behind the name change for the Ferguson College of Ag); Ross McKnight of Throckmorton, Texas, who is a rancher, oilman and more(and an Animal Science degree holder); Terry Stuart Forst of Waurika, another Animal Science alum and OSU Alum Rodd Moesel of Oklahoma City, who currently serves as the President of the Oklahoma Farm Bureau. The ninth member of the search committee that has a love for agriculture is Helen Hodges of Hennessey, who decades after graduating, honored her parents by establishing the Dillon and Lois Hodges Professorship in Plant and Soil Sciences in 2008. This position strengthens the Oklahoma Wheat Improvement Team through cutting-edge technologies and next-generation sequencing.

OSU Regent Joe D. Hall from Elk City, Oklahoma, will chair the search committee. Now in his third eight-year term on the OSU/A&M Board of Regents, Hall was part of the process that resulted in the selection of Hargis as president in 2008 and several other high-profile leadership appointments. Hall graduated from OSU in 1983 with a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering.

“I am pleased Regent Hall agreed to chair the committee,” Davis said. "His experience with previous searches and knowledge of OSU and the system will be invaluable. Selecting the next president to lead OSU and its system institutions is critically important as we seek to maintain the momentum built during the successful Hargis presidency.”

“The members of the search committee share a singular goal to help the regents identify the best person to lead OSU in the years ahead,“ Hall said. “I am pleased with the diversity and variety of the members and their willingness to engage in this meaningful task. We are committed to conducting a thorough and expeditious national search as the committee identifies candidates capable of leading one of the nation’s premier land-grant academic, research and healthcare institutions.”

Buffkin/Baker, a national search firm steeped in university presidential search experience, will be assisting the regents and search committee.

“We also want to encourage input from the broad OSU community, and have created a website (presidentsearch.okstate.edu) where people can offer their thoughts and ideas as well as stay informed of the search,” Hall said.

The committee’s first task will be to develop a position profile, outlining the qualities and characteristics sought in the next president of OSU and the OSU System. In addition to OSU in Stillwater, the system includes OSU-Tulsa, OSU-Oklahoma City, OSU Institute of Technology in Okmulgee, the OSU Center for Health Sciences in Tulsa, and the OSU College of Veterinary Medicine in Stillwater.

The search process will continue during the spring semester with the goal of naming a new president before the end of this academic year, June 30, 2021.

The OSU Presidential Search Committee
OSU/A&M Regents
Mr. Joe Hall, Chair

Mr. Calvin Anthony

Mr. Rick Davis

Dr. Trudy Milner

OSU – Stillwater faculty
Dr. Pamela Lovern

Dr. Heather Fahlenkamp

Dr. Beatrix Haggard

Dr. Jose Sagarnaga

OSU students
Ms. Jaden Kasitz

Mr. Luke Muller

Ms. Maegan Berg

Ms. Jada Lusk

OSU – Stillwater staff
Ms. Tashia Cheves

OSU/A&M Board of Regents staff
Mr. Jason Ramsey

OSU – Stillwater administrator
Mr. Kyle Wray

Vice President of Institutional Diversity
Dr. Jason Kirksey

OSU Athletics Department representative
Mr. Chad Weiberg

OSUIT representative
Dr. Scott Newman

OSU – Oklahoma City representative
Dr. Steve Collins

OSU – Center for Health Sciences representative
Ms. Sherrita Sweet

OSU – Tulsa representative
Mr. Brett Lessley

OSU Foundation President
Ms. Blaire Atkinson

OSU Alumni Association representative
Mr. Tony LoPresto

City of Stillwater representative
Mayor Will Joyce

At-Large representatives
Mr. Bill John Baker, Mr. Mike Boynton, Mr. Joe Eastin, Ms. Kay Ferguson, Ms. Terry Stuart Forst, Ms. Helen Hodges, Dr. Brett Jameson, Mr. Ross McKnight, Mr. Malone Mitchell, Mr. Rodd Moesel, Mr. Carl Thoma, Ms. Lou Watkins



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