Search for new ARCC president underway

The search for a new president to lead both Anoka-Ramsey Community and Anoka Technical College is moving into top gear.

Peter Bodley
Managing Editor, ABC Newspapers

The search for a new president to lead both Anoka-Ramsey Community and Anoka Technical College is moving into top gear.

Last fall, James McCormick, chancellor of Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU), announced that the two colleges were being aligned with one president, but not merged – each would remain independent of the other.

MnSCU retained Pauly Group, Inc., Springfield, Ill., to conduct a nationwide search for the new president.

According to Angela Provart, president, Pauly Group Inc., for best consideration application materials from candidates should have been received by Jan. 24.

Now, a presidential search advisory committee is being formed to assist in the search process, which includes interviewing the candidates and making recommendations to the chancellor.

The advisory committee, which will comprise representatives from both Anoka Technical College and the two campuses of Anoka-Ramsey (Coon Rapids and Cambridge) held its first meeting on Jan. 28 at the Coon Rapids campus.

Nominations for the committee closed Jan. 14 and from those names, Keith Stover, chairperson of the advisory committee, will pick the committee members.

Stover, president of MnSCU’s South Central College, with campuses in Faribault and North Mankato, was chosen by McCormick to head the presidential search advisory committee.

The committee will comprise four faculty, four staff members, four students and four community members, two from each college, as well as two administrators, one from each college.

But the Anoka-Ramsey representatives on the committee will include one faculty, staff, student and community member each from the Coon Rapids and Cambridge campuses.

Under the MnSCU Board of Trustees policy, “committee members shall be knowledgeable of the duties and responsibilities of the position to be filled and broadly representative of the interests of the faculty, staff, students and community.”

According to Darren Hoff, Anoka-Ramsey chief human resource officer and campus liaison to the committee, the role of the committee members is a very important part of the selection process.

“It is our goal to create a committee that represents the diversity of our colleges and communities,” Hoff said.

The two colleges will be working as one in the advisory committee process, said MaryBeth Christenson Jones, Anoka Technical College human resources and campus liaison.

The Pauly Group will be presenting a pool of viable candidates for the committee to consider, she said.

The advisory committee is expected to meet the second week of February and the first two weeks of March to review resumes, develop interview questions, interview candidates and make a final recommendation to the chancellor.

Under the search timetable, the committee will conduct confidential interviews with candidates in February.

In March, on-campus interviews will take place, after which the committee will present the names of finalist candidates to the chancellor’s office.

According to MnSCU policy, the chancellor and at least one and up to three members of the MnSCU Board of Trustees will interview the selected finalists, after which the chancellor will recommend a candidate for president to the board, which will make the appointment.

MnSCU policy also states that an acting or interim president may not be considered as a candidate in a presidential search process.

The goal is to have the new president on board in July.

The president will report to the MnSCU chancellor and serves as chief executive officer of the two colleges.

At this time, the colleges are being run by interim presidents – Dr. Jessica Stumpf at Anoka-Ramsey and Dr. Shari Olson at Anoka Tech.

But in announcing that the two colleges would have one president, McCormick made it clear the technical and communities colleges would not be merged.

Rather, McCormick described the move as an alignment of the two colleges.

The alignment of the two colleges means that each college will retain its own name, mission and accreditation, according to McCormick.

Anoka-Ramsey’s two campuses have a total of 12,000 students, while Anoka Technical College enrolls 3,400 students.