Updates from the Chair



August 20, 2013

To the Campus Community,

I am delighted to announce that today the Board of Trustees elected Katherine Bergeron, a distinguished scholar and skilled administrator, to become the 11th president of Connecticut College. She will take office Jan. 1, 2014, following President Higdon’s retirement.

‌Katherine is currently dean of the college and professor of music at Brown University. As dean, she has been Brown’s chief academic officer for undergraduate education since 2006 and has established an impressive record of creative and effective innovation. She is an inspiring leader with a tremendous ability to connect ideas and convert them into action.

Katherine earned her Bachelor of Arts in music at Wesleyan University, followed by master’s and doctoral degrees in musicology from Cornell University. Before joining the faculty at Brown in 2004, she taught at the University of California, Berkeley, Tufts University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

She is a gifted musician who has written or edited four books and published numerous papers and articles. Her scholarly work has been enlivened by performance, including a performance here on campus at the 2003 biennial symposium of our Ammerman Center for Arts & Technology. She is married to Joseph Butch Rovan, a performer, composer and media artist; Butch is currently professor and chair of the music department at Brown.

It has been a pleasure to get to know Katherine through the presidential search process. In every aspect of her life and work, she exemplifies the creativity and intellectual breadth and depth fostered by liberal arts education. She will be a compelling and articulate champion of Connecticut College’s unique approach to residential education in the arts, sciences, humanities and social sciences. I look forward to working with her as she builds on the many successes of President Higdon’s tenure and takes our College to a new level of achievement in its second century.

Katherine’s selection is the culmination of a thoughtful and thorough seven-month search. The search committee has worked diligently, first to gather input and ideas from the extended College community, and then to review and assess candidates. In Katherine, we have found a president-elect whose scholarship, dedication to students and learning, commitment to diversity and inclusiveness, and personal qualities of integrity, caring and passion match the values and priorities of our College community. It has been an honor to lead this process, and I am grateful to all the committee members – trustees, faculty, staff and students – for their hard work and commitment.

For those of you who have already returned to campus, I am pleased to invite you to meet Katherine and Butch tomorrow (Wednesday, Aug. 21) at an informal reception in Shain Library from 2 to 3:30 p.m.

On Sept. 19, after the academic year is underway, we will introduce Katherine in a more formal campus event and, later in the year, at off-campus events for alumni and parents. Details of these events will follow. 

In the meantime, I encourage you to read the full announcement of Katherine’s appointment and to join me in thanking the search committee for their service.

Sincerely,

Pamela D. Zilly ’75
Chair, Board of Trustees
Chair, Presidential Search Committee 

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July 26, 2013

Dear Members of the Connecticut College Community,

I would like to take this opportunity to update you on the progress of the search for our next president. During the last several months, the Search Committee has worked closely with its consultant Spencer Stuart to identify and evaluate candidates whose experience and values align with the characteristics sought by the College. I would like to thank members of the community who have offered the Committee their perspectives and opinions and who have provided nominations to the Committee.

Our work is ongoing as we continue to evaluate and meet with candidates. The Committee is excited by the exceptional quality of each candidate and is gratified by the deep admiration for the College's achievements and intense interest in the position that has been expressed by the candidates.

During this phase of the Committee's work, please recognize that detailed updates will be limited. The confidentiality of the candidates interested in the presidency is of paramount importance and members of the Committee are unable to speak about individuals or the status of the search.

Thank you for your participation and support of the search process. Please direct your questions, comments or nominations to conncollegepressearch@spencerstuart.com.

Sincerely,

Pamela D. Zilly '75
Chair, Board of Trustees
Chair, Presidential Search Committee

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April 5, 2013

Dear Members of the Connecticut College Community,

I am pleased to share with you the most recent developments on the presidential search.

On March 4 and 5, the Presidential Search Committee held open forums for faculty, staff and students on campus as well as meetings with representatives of various campus constituencies. Meetings with alumni, parents and other important members of our community are still under way. Each meeting has been engaging and instructive in providing the Search Committee with the perspectives and opinions of the Connecticut College community.

We greatly appreciate the time and thoughtfulness of all participants on and off campus. Your collective input has informed the Presidential Search Statement, which you can read on the search website. This public document will introduce potential candidates to Connecticut College, our goals for the future and the characteristics we seek in the next president.

As the search moves forward, the Search Committee will be presenting the College to candidates in greater detail and nuance. With those future conversations in mind, we continue to welcome thoughts and comments from the College community.

We are now working closely with consultant Spencer Stuart to identify and develop candidates who embody the College’s mission and culture and can lead the College to even greater achievement and recognition. Please direct your questions, comments or nominations to conncollegepressearch@spencerstuart.com.

Thank you for participation and support of the search process.

Sincerely,

Pamela D. Zilly '75
Chair, Board of Trustees
Chair, Presidential Search Committee

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February 19, 2013

Dear Members of the Connecticut College Community:

I am writing to provide an update on the presidential search process.

As I mentioned in my prior message, we believe it would be beneficial for the Search Committee to be supported by a search firm in conducting the presidential search. To that end, the Search Committee met earlier this month and selected Spencer Stuart, a national privately held executive search firm with a strong track record in academic leadership search. We are fortunate to have three consultants from the Education, Nonprofit and Government practice of Spencer Stuart working with us - Jennifer Bol, who leads the global nonprofit practice, Michele Haertel, who leads the education practice, and Mary Gorman, a member of the practice with considerable experience within the academy. Jennifer, Michele, and Mary have conducted many higher education leadership searches and we are confident their abilities will help effectuate a successful search.

In the next few weeks, we will be actively engaged in seeking the opinions and perspectives of the Connecticut College community regarding the opportunities and challenges facing the College and the experience and leadership characteristics we are seeking in our next president. A series of separate, open forums for faculty, staff, and students will be held on campus March 4th and March 5th. The schedule for these forums is set forth below as well as questions designed to prompt discussion at the forums. Meetings will also be held with representatives of various campus constituencies on these days.

In addition, meetings and discussions with alumni and other important members of the Connecticut College community are being planned. In addition, we welcome your comments, suggestions, and nominations of candidates at: conncollegepressearch@spencerstuart.com

We are committed to broad consultation with the entire Connecticut College community. We look forward to hearing from you and to keeping you informed of the progress of the search.

Sincerely,

Pamela D. Zilly '75
Chair, Board of Trustees
Chair, Presidential Search Committee

Schedule of Open Forums

DATE

TIME

FORUM

LOCATION

Monday, March 4

7 – 8 p.m.

Students

Cro’s Nest, 2nd floor
College Center at Crozier-Williams

Tuesday, March 5

9:30 – 10:30 a.m.

Staff

Ernst Common Room,
Blaustein Humanities Center

 

4:15 – 5:30 p.m.

Faculty

Ernst Common Room,
Blaustein Humanities Center

Open Forums: Questions for Discussion

What do you find most distinctive about Connecticut College?

What are the opportunities and challenges Connecticut College faces now and which our next president will face in the future?

What are the experiences, attributes and competencies you are seeking in our next president?

What advice do you have for the Search Committee?

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Jan. 28, 2013

To the campus community,

I am pleased to announce the formation of the Presidential Search Committee to assist the Board of Trustees in the selection of the next President of Connecticut College. The committee comprises seven trustees, four faculty members, one staff representative and two students. All seven trustees are alumni of the College. The committee will be charged with identifying and screening candidates to assist the Board in making its selection.

The members of the committee are listed below. As chair of the committee, I want to thank them for their willingness to serve and to commit what will be considerable time and effort for the benefit of the College.

We began our work last week with an organizational meeting on campus. Among our priorities will be to select a search firm and to develop a position profile setting forth the views of the College's future and desired competencies and attributes of the next President. The search process will include many opportunities for broad participation from members of the campus community, alumni and parents to share their thoughts on the needs and priorities of the College.  In addition, we will regularly update the campus community about the progress on the search.

I am grateful for the high level of interest and support from the campus community as we have been assembling the committee. Your talent, energy and dedication will help us attract an outstanding President to lead the College in the years ahead.

Sincerely,

Pamela D. Zilly '75
Chair, Board of Trustees
Chair, Presidential Search Committee

TRUSTEES
Debo P. Adegbile '91, Special Counsel, NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. * DeFred G. Folts III '82, Senior Managing Director, Windhaven Investment Management * Prescott W. Hafner '80, Managing Partner and Director of Marketing, Hafner Vineyard * W. Estella Johnson '75, Retired Director of Economic Development, Community Development Department, City of Cambridge, Mass. * Maria C. Pellegrini '69, Executive Director of Programs, W. M. Keck Foundation * George S. Rogers '82 P'16, WPP Global Business Development Director * Pamela D. Zilly '75, Board Chair, Retired Senior Managing Director, Restructuring & Reorganization Advisory Group, The Blackstone Group L.P.

FACULTY
Stanton Ching, Professor of Chemistry  * Ronald Flores, Associate Professor of Sociology * Purba Mukerji, Assistant Professor of Economics * Andrea Wollensak, Professor of Art

STAFF
William O'Neil, Director of Major Gifts and Planned Giving

STUDENTS
Timothy Kast ’14, President, Class of 2014; co-chair, 2014 Commencement Speaker Committee; double major in government and economics; member of men’s lacrosse team; from Medway, Mass. * Erica Lovett ’14, Admission Ambassador; Unity House Ambassador; Alumni Liaison of Umoja; manager of Lambdin game room; history major; from Pennsauken, N.J.