Update from FIU Board of Trustees Chair Dean Colson about presidential search

April 5, 2022

Dean C. Colson — Chair, FIU Board of Trustees

Dean C. Colson
Chair, FIU Board of Trustees

Dear FIU family,

In an important step on our path to selecting FIU’s next president, I am pleased to announce the members of the FIU Presidential Search Committee.

These individuals, who were appointed this morning at the Board of Trustees meeting and in accordance with Florida Board of Governors regulations, represent the FIU Board of Trustees, faculty, students, administration, alumni, community members and other stakeholders and university supporters.

With varying professional backgrounds and community involvement - and a sincere commitment to the success of FIU - these members will provide the knowledge and dedication needed to ensure we conduct a productive and diligent search for FIU’s sixth president. I am grateful to each of them for their dedication to this process and for giving of their time to assist our university during this time of transition.

The FIU Presidential Search Committee members are:

  • Rogelio Tovar, FIU Alumnus, FIU Board of Trustees Vice-Chair and PSC Chair
  • Cesar L. Alvarez, FIU Trustee
  • Deanne Butchey, FIU alumna, FIU Faculty
  • Valentina Casanova, FIU Student
  • Carlos A. Duart, FIU Alumnus, FIU Trustee
  • Eric Eikenberg, Community Leader
  • Patricia Frost, Board of Governors Member
  • Jill M. Granat, FIU Alumna, FIU Foundation Board Member
  • Gerald C. Grant, Jr., FIU Alumnus, Community Leader, Trustee Emeritus
  • Hon. Barbara Lagoa, Judge, FIU Alumna
  • Albert R. Maury, FIU Alumnus, Community Leader, FIU Board of Trustees Chair Emeritus
  • Richard Olson, FIU Faculty
  • Claudia Puig, FIU Alumna, Community Leader, FIU Board of Trustees Chair Emeritus
  • H.T. Smith, FIU Faculty
  • Rebecca Lyn Toonkel, FIU Faculty

As I announced on March 29, Board Vice-Chair Tovar will serve as chair of the Presidential Search Committee. Mr. Tovar received both his bachelor’s and master’s in Accounting at FIU, and currently is President and Chairman of RT Holdings, a proprietarily funded investment firm based in Miami. In the community, Mr. Tovar remains active, supporting various causes in Miami and nationally. He has served on the board of the United Way of Puerto Rico and has led efforts of the Make-A-Wish Foundation as a coordinator.

The search committee will collaborate closely with the Dallas-based search firm R. William Funk and Associates to identify, recruit and vet candidates. The committee is holding its first meeting at 2 p.m. today. The meeting will be livestreamed at webcast.fiu.edu and we invite you to tune in.

Information about search committee members and updates about the presidential search process can be found on the FIU presidential search website. This website will be updated routinely. Please visit the website and share your input.

Please also mark your calendar for April 13, when we will hold an FIU community listening session to get input from students, faculty, and staff. An invitation for this event will be forthcoming.

As I have said before, our Board is committed to a thorough, diligent, and collaborative search process and will continue to provide the university community with frequent updates and opportunities to work together.

I believe the FIU presidency is one of the great jobs in higher education. I can assure you that our next leader will be a true champion of student success and research excellence.

Thank you,

Dean C. Colson
Chair, FIU Board of Trustees