Presidential Search Committee Begins Series of Public Forums on Tuesday

August 21, 2009 — The special committee of the Board of Visitors that is seeking the eighth University of Virginia president will kick off a series of public forums on Tuesday.

The seventh president, John T. Casteen III, will step down on Aug. 1, 2010, when he completes 20 years in office.

John O. "Dubby" Wynne, rector of the University and chairman of the search committee, said in an e-mail to students that the forums are open to everyone, including members of the local community.

"Listening to the ideas, viewpoints and opinions of members of the University community is vital to the process," he wrote.

He said the committee will pose three questions to all forum participants:

• What opportunities and challenges do you see facing the University of Virginia in the next 10 years?

• What qualifications/personal leadership characteristics should the next president possess to take advantage of the opportunities and address the challenges?

• What other considerations should the committee bear in mind as we initiate this search process?

Tuesday's forums will be from 10 a.m. to noon in the Newcomb Hall Ballroom and from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. in the Zehmer Hall auditorium.

Forums are also scheduled on Sept. 1 from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. in McLeod Hall auditorium and 4 to 6 p.m. in the Newcomb Ballroom; and on Sept. 12 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in Alumni Hall ballroom, before U.Va.'s football game against Texas Christian University at 3:30 p.m.

The final forum will be held on Sept. 29 at U.Va.'s College at Wise.

The committee will hold its first meeting on Monday at 1 p.m. in the board room of the Rotunda. After meeting in open session, the committee will move into executive session.

Those who are unable to attend the forums can submit comments on an electronic form or by mail to the Board of Visitors, c/o President Search, P.O. Box 400222, Charlottesville, VA 22904-4222 or