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Finalists Named for Texas Tech Provost Position

Administrators narrow the search for university provost to two candidates: Robert Smith of the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and Gail Hackett of University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Written by Sally Logue Post

Administration Building Bell Tower, Texas Tech University

The two finalists for the provost position will take part in individual forums in December. The forums will be open to the public. Photo by Joey Hernandez.

President Guy Bailey announced Nov. 25 that Robert Smith and Gail Hackett have been named finalists for the position of provost at Texas Tech University.

“Both Dr. Hackett and Dr. Smith are outstanding educators and have proven track records as chief academic officers,” Bailey said. “The position of provost is vital as Texas Tech continues to grow and strengthen its reputation nationally. I look forward to hearing input from faculty, staff and students after the candidates visit campus.”

Smith is provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs emeritus and professor of chemistry at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. Hackett is provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Smith will visit Texas Tech Nov. 30 – Dec. 2. An open forum is set for 4 p.m. Dec. 1 in the Escondido Theatre in the basement of the Student Union Building.

Download the schedule.

Hackett will visit campus Dec. 2 – Dec. 4. An open forum is set for 4 p.m. Dec. 3 in the Escondido Theatre in the basement of the Student Union Building.

Download the schedule.

All faculty, staff, students and interested Lubbock community members are welcome to attend the open forums. While on campus, the finalists will meet with the president and his executive cabinet, representatives from the Office of the Provost, academic deans, the faculty and staff senates and the student government association among others.

Finalists were recommended after a round of airport interviews last week, said Michael Shonrock, search committee chair and vice president for student affairs and enrollment management.

“We were fortunate to have many qualified applicants,” Shonrock said. “The search committee spent long hours on this job and are to be commended for their hard work as is Robert Lawless, senior consultant with Academic Search Inc., the company who assisted us in our search.”

Smith joined the University of Arkansas in 2000. Previously he served as vice provost for research and graduate education and dean of the Graduate School at the University of Connecticut and vice president for research and dean of the graduate school at Washington State University. He also was on the faculty at the University of Texas and the University of Iowa. He is a widely published scholar in the field of pharmacology. He earned his bachelor’s degree from St. John’s University, Jamaica, N.Y. and his master’s and doctoral degrees from the University of Michigan. Full Curriculum Vitae.

Hackett joined the University of Missouri-Kansas City as provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs and professor of counseling and education psychology in 2008. Previously she served as university vice provost and dean of University College at Arizona State University. She also was on the faculty of the University of California, Santa Barbara and Ohio State University. She is a widely published author in the fields of social cognitive theory and career assessment and counseling. She earned her bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees from Pennsylvania State University. Full Curriculum Vitae.

More information can be found at the Provost Search Web site. Feedback on both candidates after their visit to campus is encouraged and can be provided to the search committee at provost.search@ttu.edu.

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