Madison White

Whittier College President Sharon Herzberger is retiring at the end of this school year. Consulting firm Witt/Kieffer is aiding in  the search for a new president. They began their process by holding open forum discussions with students, staff, faculty, and alumni to assess what the College community is looking for. 

The Search Committee stated that they would be putting together a Leadership Profile that outlines the various responsibilities of the President and the desired characteristics for candidates. The Leadership Profile is important because it advertises the job and the College to potential applicants, and the more specific the profile is, the better the pool of applicants will be. 

The Leadership Profile was sent out to students in a Student-L email on Oct. 18. Presidential searches in higher education are confidential by nature so as not to jeopardize the current employment of candidates. Because of this, there will be little for the Search Committee to report on during the application review and interview process. 

The deadlines for applications is Jan. 12, 2018. Witt/Kieffer will screen applicants and make recommendations to the Search Committee about the strongest candidates, but ultimately the decision will be made by the Committee. Below are excerpts from the Leadership Profile compiled by Zachary Smith PhD and Sophie Stava of Witt/Kieffer. For the full document, see the Student-L email. 

“The president reports directly to an engaged Board of Trustees and oversees a leadership team who manage the divisions of Academic Affairs, Advancement, Enrollment, Finance and Administration, Student Affairs and Athletics.”

“The next president will collaborate with the Board, campus leadership, faculty, staff and students to develop a vision and long-term strategic business plan that takes advantage of the campus’s diversity, committed faculty, physical plant and high functioning leadership team.” 

“The next president will have the opportunity to leverage Whittier’s unique identity as one of the most diverse four-year liberal arts institutions in the country, and position it as a national model for the future.”

“The president should establish the institution as a model liberal arts college that serves a highly diverse student population with equity, respect and inclusion at its core.”

“The next president must have the ability to motivate and inspire the campus toward an evolving strategic plan for the future.” 

“The president will be expected to spend meaningful time with various constituencies — including community members, donors, alumni, business leaders and friends - to expand Whittier’s culture of philanthropy and ready the College for the launch of its next fundraising campaign.”

 “The president should create an engaging academic environment which supports continued professional and scholarly development of faculty while ensuring the continued enhancement and growth of the undergraduate experience of students”

“The next president will need to develop innovative strategies and models to enhance and broaden the impact of the campus experience for residential and nonresidential students.”

“The next president will need to demonstrated track record of successful, highly visible, executive leadership with specific accomplishments in change management, organizational and professional development, and strategic planning.” 

“Significant experience and achievement in building high performance teams and organizational cultures which have accomplished meaningful, shared objectives.” 

“Strong commitment to shared governance ability to see relationships and opportunities in complex and wide-spanning issues, and translate those perspectives into organizational performance sophisticated understanding of trends in higher education and their impact on strategic initiatives and planning for the College.” 

“Collaborative and decisive leader and change agent ability to inspire and attract top talent to the College. Mentor senior and aspiring leaders. Recognition and commitment toward continued improvement of the undergraduate experience”

The Quaker Campus will continue to report on the story as it develops.