June 28 2013

Search Committee Announcement

To the Wheaton community,

We write, as the chair and vice-chair of the Presidential Search Committee, to offer some information on the search for Wheaton’s next leader and to invite your involvement in the search effort. While much of our work must remain confidential to ensure that we attract the very best candidates, we want the process itself to be well understood and need your support to successfully recruit a leader who will articulate and advance our vision for Wheaton’s future.

We are fortunate to have a diverse and talented group of Wheaton trustees, alumnae/i, faculty, staff, and students to represent our community and guide this critical effort. The following members of the community have agreed to serve on the committee:

Robert Chase Armstrong ’14
Major: History
Head Resident Advisor, Beard & Meadows

Shawn Christian
Associate Professor of English, Wheaton College

Brian Douglas
Vice President, Finance and Administration and Treasurer, Wheaton College

James C. Hoyte
Former Trustee
Counsel, ADS Ventures, Inc.

James B. Karman P’01
Real estate investor
Retired CEO, Spaulding and Slye and vice chairman of Jones Lang LaSalle Americas

Kirk D. Kolenbrander
Vice President and Secretary of the Corporation, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Shante Little ’14
Major: African, African American, Diaspora Studies
2013 NCAA Outdoor National Track & Field Champion, 400-meter

Diane C. Nordin ’80
Former Partner and Director of Fixed Income, Wellington Management Company, LLP

Keith J. Peden
Senior Vice President, Human Resources & Security, Raytheon Company

Tommy Ratliff
Professor of Mathematics, Wheaton College

John C. Talanian Jr.  ’93
Senior Vice President, Institutional Equities and Partner, Cantor Fitzgerald

M. Gabriela Torres
Associate Professor of Anthropology, Wheaton College

Lisa M. Yenush ’90
Associate Director of Athletics/Senior Woman Administrator, Wheaton College

We also will benefit from the expertise of the nationally known firm of Storbeck/Pimentel & Associates, which specializes in executive recruitment for colleges and universities, including recent presidential searches for Kenyon, Lafayette, Haverford, and Swarthmore. Shelly Weiss Storbeck, managing partner; Anne Coyle, vice president, and Nell Booth, senior associate, will provide expert guidance for our search.

The process will begin with a very careful assessment of the college’s distinctive character—our traditions and values—as well as the opportunities and challenges the institution faces. This will help the Search Committee to clarify the skills and perspectives that our next president will need. We are eager to get started, but we are also determined to take sufficient time to consult with members of our community. Over the course of the summer and into the early fall, we will talk with many campus constituents and alumnae/i. We have scheduled two all-day campus visits for Wednesday, July 24 and Wednesday, August 28 and will soon invite participation in the open forums on those dates. In August, you will receive a survey designed to solicit your views on the search. Please complete it and contribute to our shared understanding of Wheaton’s future.

With your assistance, we will develop a position specification that includes a description of Wheaton, the central tasks ahead for our new president, and a profile of qualities sought. When this document is completed, we will begin talking to potential candidates and to people who can help identify candidates. We expect that this opportunity will attract strong candidates, who will be engaged and carefully vetted by the Search Committee.

The Search Committee is eager for your ideas and input and committed to keeping the Wheaton community informed. To that end, we have established a presidential search web site at wheatoncollege.edu/presidentialsearch. We will share information, as appropriate, through this site. However, the success of this search depends upon our ability to maintain confidentiality throughout the search. Because strong candidates will typically insist on confidentiality so that they are not compromised in their current positions, we will be unable to speak with you about the status of a particular candidate or the timing of search activities.

The Presidential Search Committee welcomes your thoughts and suggestions at every step of the search process. Your advice about Wheaton’s distinctive character, the goals that we should set as an institution for the next ten years, and the challenges we must overcome would be most helpful. Please direct your comments and suggestions (in confidence) to the Presidential Search Committee at presidentialsearch@wheatoncollege.edu.

We also would appreciate nominations of potential candidates, which should be sent to our search firm at WheatonCollege@storbeckpimentel.com.

We begin the search with confidence and optimism. The strength and quality of the education that Wheaton offers and the college’s record of accomplishment positions us well for a successful search. Your support and participation will help to ensure that outcome.  Thanks in advance for your interest and assistance.


Nancy Pearlstine Conger ’67 Chair, Presidential Search Committee
Red Hook Management Investment Advisors
Polly Bartlett Bryson ’79 Vice-Chair, Presidential Search Committee
Terra Nova Partners