A letter from the Bates College Presidential Search Committee co-chairs

From Trustees Valerie A. Smith ’75 and J. Michael Chu ’80:

Dear members of the Bates College community,

One of the most important responsibilities of the Bates College Board of Trustees is to recruit, select and appoint the President of Bates, a leader who will guide the College toward our highest aspirations for this great institution.

We are writing to brief you on how the current presidential search process will work.



It is our privilege to serve as trustee co-chairs of the Bates College Presidential Search Committee, which has now been fully constituted. The full committee membership is:

  • Valerie Smith ’75, Co-Chair, Presidential Search Committee and Member, Bates College Board of Trustees
  • Michael Chu ’80, P’12, Co-Chair, Presidential Search Committee and Member, Bates College Board of Trustees
  • Alison Bernstein P’09, Vice Chair, Bates College Board of Trustees
  • Michael Bonney ’80, P’09, P’12, P’15, Chair, Bates College Board of Trustees
  • Darrell Crate ’89, Chair of the Advancement Committee, Bates College Board of Trustees
  • Stephen Fuller ’82, P’13, Chair of the Infrastructure Committee, Bates College Board of Trustees
  • Lena Sene ’00, Member, Bates College Board of Trustees
  • Eugene Wiemers, Bates College Vice President for Information and Library Services, staff representative
  • Jacqui Holmes ’13, student representative
  • Marcus Bruce ’77, Bates College Professor of Religious Studies
  • Matthew Côté, Bates College Associate Professor of Chemistry and Associate Dean of the Faculty
  • Emily Kane, Bates College Whitehouse Professor of Sociology
  • John Kelsey, Bates College Professor of Psychology
  • Catharine Stimpson, LL.D. ’90, Bates College Trustee Emerita, University Professor at New York University’s Steinhardt Institute for Higher Education and Dean Emerita of the NYU Graduate School of Arts and Science, will serve as an adviser to the committee.

As Presidential Search Committee co-chairs, we have asked Mary Main, Bates College Director of Human Resources, to provide staff support for committee activities throughout the search process.

The Presidential Search Committee has selected Storbeck/Pimentel & Associates, one of the leading firms in the area of higher education presidential searches, to assist the committee in the execution of its charge.

The objective of the search process is to appoint the next President of Bates by July 1, 2012. All Presidential Search Committee members have agreed that we will be as transparent and inclusive as possible about the process while maintaining an appropriate timeline, but hold in absolute confidence the names of candidates, both during and after the search. This commitment to confidentiality is critical in order to attract the strongest possible pool of candidates.

A key part of the early stages of the presidential search process is engaging a broad group of Bates College constituencies in articulating their aspirations for the College and the professional talents they seek in the next Bates president.

To that end, members of the Presidential Search Committee and Storbeck/Pimentel will begin a series of listening sessions this week. We expect that these initial sessions will continue periodically through at least Reunion Weekend June 10-12, and then throughout the fall.

A Search Committee link will be available on the home page of the Bates website shortly. This site will provide one means for the community to express aspirations for the College and recommend candidates for consideration; as well as a means for the search committee to inform the community of news, such as times and dates of the listening sessions.

A group of Bates staff members from across a range of functions has been identified to interact with the Presidential Search Committee co-chairs and with Gene Wiemers, staff representative to the committee. Faculty representatives on the search committee will inform the Committee on Faculty Governance (CFG) about the process. Other members of the search committee will serve as liaisons with the Alumni Council. The student representative will communicate with groups representing student interests. The Trustees will be kept apprised of progress as a routine part of search committee activities.

The appointment of a strong and thoughtful leader as the next Bates College President is vital to the future of the entire institution. The Bates College Board of Trustees will welcome input from the Bates community as we engage this momentous process together over coming months.


Valerie A. Smith ’75 and J. Michael Chu ’80
Co-Chairs, Bates College Presidential Search Committee

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