Payne coveted by Truman

David E. Payne, vice president for Academic Affairs at Sam Houston State University is one of three final candidates selected for the Truman Presidency at Truman State University in Kirksville, MO.

Randa Rawlins, a member of the Truman State University Board of Governors and chair of the Presidential Search Committee, announced on Jan. 30 that three finalists for the presidency at TSU had been selected.

The other two finalists for presidency are Norman J. Bregman, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs at Longwood University; and Barbara B. Dixon, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs at the State University of New York at Geneseo.

“The committee has worked hard since last September to identify a worthy successor to President (Jack) Magruder (Truman’s current president),” Rawlings said. “Following a national search, the committee is bringing to campus for public interviews, three outstanding finalists who all have the leadership experience and knowledge to continue Truman’s development as a nationally recognized public liberal arts university.”

Each candidate will be required to interview with faculty and staff in Kirksville, on the Truman, campus for about two days. The candidates will also meet with the Board of Governors at TSU.

The Board of Governors for TSU has the three names for presidential candidates and Rawlings said the Presidential Search Committee is gathering additional information from the finalists with the campus visits. The board will make the final decision on the candidates for TSU’s new president.

“We opened up our candidacy here in September for anyone to apply, David applied and he was selected for a personal interview, which we did in late January,” Rawlings said. “Out of that group he was selected as one of the finalists to participate in a campus visit.”

Interviews from the three finalists are scheduled for February and early March, and the Board of Governors anticipates making a final decision on a new president for TSU no later than April 2.

“There are three finalists and he was selected as one of those three and those names have now been transferred from what was the search committee to the Board of Governors,” Rawlings said. “At Truman State, the Board of Governors, which is a controlling board at the university, will actually make the selections.”

Payne is scheduled to visit TSU on March 4 and 5 for two days of meetings with different members of the campus community at TSU.

“In the meetings (Payne) will have for the two days he is here, he will be meeting with lots of different constituencies on campus including administrative people, staff, faculty, students and board of governors, so that we get a chance to know him a little better and he gets a chance to know the campus and the people here a little better,” Rawlings said.

The three finalists have all served as vice president for Academic Affairs at their respective universities.

Prior to SHSU, Payne has also served as vice president for Academic Affairs at Emporia State University for eight years and was the dean of college of Social Sciences at Southeast Missouri State University for six years in the 1980s.

He holds a bachelor’s of science, in Sociology from Brigham Young University and a, master’s of arts and doctorate in Sociology from the University of North Carolina.

Bregman is the provost and vice president from Academic Affairs at Longwood University and has served as VPAA since 1997, and he was named provost in 2000. Bregman previously served in this position at the University of Evansville and he was the first dean of the Ellis College of Arts and Science at Henderson State University, Arkansas’ public liberal arts institution.

Dixon has served as provost and vice president for Academic Affairs at the State University of New York at Geneseo, a public liberal arts university since 1997. She previously spent 27 years at Central Michigan University, and was the associate dean and interim dean of the College of Arts and Science.

TSU was founded in 1867 and has a history of being recognized nationally for its assessment program and science education. U.S. News and World Report recognized TSU as the number one public university in the Midwest Region.

Jack Magruder, TSU’s current president announced his retirement on June 30 of this year. Magruder became the 13th president for TSU in 1994.

“I think it is an open process right now, and we have a tradition of having campus visits and open forums with faculty, staff and students,” Rawlings said.

Payne was unavailable for comment.

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