Three Finalists Named for Texas Tech Vice President for Research Position

Open Forums scheduled with each candidate.

President Guy Bailey announced today (Feb. 13) that Thomas Neal Farris, Colin Guy Scanes and T. Taylor Eighmy are finalists for the position of vice president for research at Texas Tech University.

“Finding the strongest possible leader for our research mission is vital to our university’s ability to grow its externally funded research and become nationally recognized for the fine work we do,” Bailey said. “I believe Texas Tech is on the way to becoming a research powerhouse in a number of areas. The new vice president for research will be key to attaining that goal. I look forward to hearing input from faculty, staff and students after the candidates visit campus.”

Farris is professor and head of the School of Aeronautics and Astronautics at Purdue University; Scanes is vice chancellor of research and economic development and dean of the graduate school at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee; and Eighmy is interim vice president for research and director of the strategic initiatives office at the University of New Hampshire.

Scanes will participate in an open forum at 4 p.m. Monday (Feb. 16) in the Escondido Theatre in the basement of the Student Union Building. An open forum for Eighmy is set for 4 p.m. Thursday (Feb. 19) in the Escondido Theatre in the basement of the Student Union Building.

Farris will participate in an open forum at 4 p.m. Feb. 23 in Room 309 in the Texas Tech Library.

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, the provost, academic deans, the faculty and staff senates and the student government association among others.

Finalists were selected from a pool of 50 candidates identified during a nationwide search by Robert Lawless, senior consultant with Academic Search Inc. A 10-person search committee made up of representatives from different disciplines and areas of the campus interviewed eight people then recommended three finalists.

“We had a quality pool of candidates to choose from,” said Bob Stafford, search committee chairman and member of the Texas Tech University System Board of Regents. “We believe that the three individuals chosen as finalists are the best possible candidates. Each would bring a strong research and administrative background to the job.”

Eighmy joined the University of New Hampshire in 1986 as a research assistant professor in civil engineering. He became assistant vice president for research and director of the Office of Strategic Initiatives in 2006 and interim vice president for research in 2007. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Tufts University and his master’s and doctoral degree from the University of New Hampshire.

Scanes joined the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee in 2007. He oversees a graduate school with 4,700 students and research and economic development programs with research awards that have grown by more than 10 percent each year. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Hull University in the United Kingdom, a doctoral degree from the University of Wales and a doctor of science degree from Hull University.

Farris joined Purdue in 1986 to teach and conduct research in aerospace structures and materials. He became head of the School of Aeronautics and Astronautics in 1998. The school consists of 28 faculty and about 800 undergraduate and graduate students. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Rice University and his master’s and doctoral degrees from Northwestern University.