FSU to choose Thrasher’s replacement by end of May

Published: Apr. 26, 2021 at 11:20 AM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Florida State University’s search for a new president to replace the retiring John Thrasher is poised to kick into high gear in May.

The 15-person advisory committee will learn the names of top applicants for the job, interview a half-dozen or so candidates and bring the top candidates to campus for meetings with the broader campus community, search consultant Alberto Pimentel told the committee during its Monday morning meeting.

“There’s been a lot of movement underneath, you just haven’t seen it, " Pimentel said, “That is about to change.”

So far, the names of candidates being considered for the job have been kept confidential to minimize the risk of damaging their careers at their current institutions, according to Pimentel, managing partner of Storbeck/Pimentel & Associates.

“Your presence and engagement at a deeper level is now going to be required,” Pimentel told the group.

The firm plans to provide the committee with a list of candidates on May 8. The committee will narrow the list and conduct initial interviews with six or so candidates. The group will then decide on three or so top candidates to come to Tallahassee and interview with the broader campus community, according to the plan Pimentel laid out Monday.

Those campus visits would be the week of May 17, Pimentel said. Then, the committee and the campus community would be surveyed for feedback. The week of May 24, the university’s Board of Trustees would meet with the candidates and would be in a position to make a decision. 

The goal by the end of that week, Pimentel said, would be to announce the new hire.

The Florida Board of Governors would still need to meet and approve the appointment.

“Mother’s day through Memorial Day is going to be a busy time for the committee,” said committee member Bob Sasser.

Thrasher has been president of Florida State University since 2014. His contract was extended in June 2019. He announced his retirement during a Board of Trustees meeting in Sept. 2020. Members of the Presidential Search Advisory Committee were named the following month. 

Thrasher has a bachelor’s and a law degree from Florida State. Prior to leading the university, he was a longtime state legislator, including a stint as speaker of the Florida House.

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