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Message from UH President Lassner: Update on UH Hilo Chancellor search

The search committee expects to conduct campus visits with finalists at the start of the fall 2018 semester to ensure full campus input before a selection is made.

Dear UH Hilo faculty, staff, students and administrators—

David Lassner
David Lassner

In December 2017, we announced that the search for the next chancellor of the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo began. A 16-member search committee was formed comprised of faculty, staff, students and community members and is co-chaired by Farrah-Marie Gomes, UH Hilo vice chancellor for student affairs, and Vassilis Syrmos, UH System vice president for research and innovation.

When we announced the search, we also noted that a professional search firm would be assisting with the process and we were concluding our efforts to competitively select a firm. The updated job announcement was posted in January with review to begin at the end of February. We hoped to expeditiously identify the next chancellor, who will play a critical role in strengthening UH Hilo’s unique position in the state and beyond, with my recommendation to the Board of Regents this summer.

The search committee has been moving the process along to meet this timeline. However, due to unexpected delays, a finalized agreement with the search firm is not yet in place. So as the semester comes to a close, and in consultation with the chairs who have discussed with the search committee, we are backing off this aggressive schedule to ensure that the search firm is onboard and fully engaged in assisting us identify the best possible candidates. We now expect to conduct campus visits with finalists at the start of the fall 2018 semester to ensure full campus input before a selection is made. This will still allow for a new chancellor to start in the spring 2019 time frame.

As our search continues, I appreciate the leadership of Interim Chancellor Sakai during this current academic year. I will also be making a recommendation to the Board of Regents to continue her appointment as interim chancellor until the new chancellor begins.

David Lassner

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