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Search for UB president advances

The search for the University at Buffalo's next president appears to be moving along quickly, with potential candidates whittled down to a short list.

The 15-member search committee has met with 10 candidates during an initial round of interviews, and "more than half of those" were called back for more lengthy, small-group interviews, Jeremy M. Jacobs, UB Council chairman, said this week in an e-mail to faculty and staff.

"Following extensive discussions with on-and-off list references, we are focusing our attention on a smaller group of candidates, each of whom offers superb qualifications for the presidency," wrote Jacobs, who also heads the search.

Exactly how many of those half-dozen or so candidates remain in the running to become UB's 15th president was not clear Friday, and Jacobs could not be reached to comment.

No names were mentioned.

Public colleges and universities commonly introduce a few of the presidential finalists during the end stages of a search, but the selection process at UB has tended to be more confidential.

During UB's last presidential search in 2003, names were withheld throughout the process to ensure privacy for candidates employed elsewhere.

Jacobs, chairman of Delaware North Cos., indicated the leading candidates had been pared down from a national and international pool of 69 applicants, whose credentials were reviewed by the search committee.

The contenders, Jacobs said, are, or have been, top administrators at institutions in the Association of American Universities, an organization of 61 public and private research universities that includes UB.

A candidate will be recommended to the UB Council, which then will forward its nomination to the State University of New York's chancellor and board of trustees for final approval.

No timetable has been given.

Last August, UB President John B. Simpson announced he would retire this month. But two weeks ago, he indicated he has agreed to stay on until his successor is found.

e-mail: jrey@buffnews.com

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