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A Message to the University Community

March 5, 2013

From: Joel Seligman

Re: Appointment of Rob Clark to be Senior Vice President for Research and His Reappointment as Dean of the Hajim School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

I am delighted today to announce that the Board of Trustees has voted approval of my appointment of Dr. Robert L. Clark as Senior Vice President for Research and his reappointment as Dean of the Hajim School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. Both appointments will begin on April 1, 2013 and continue through June 30, 2018. Rob will devote 50 percent of his time to each position.

Since July of 2012, Rob has served as interim Senior Vice President for Research and as Dean of the Hajim School. His service in both roles has been exemplary. Among other highlights of his work as Senior Vice President, Rob has orchestrated a review of Information Technology, supervised efforts to initiate pilot online programs, led a successful search for a new Associate Vice President for Technology Transfer and worked with the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council in support of the University’s Health Sciences Center for Computational Innovation, which resulted in an additional $5 million of support for our Center.

In February 2013, I also received reviews of Rob’s performance as Dean of the Hajim School from Provost Peter Lennie and a faculty committee within the Hajim School comprising Sandhya Dwarkadas, Eby Friedman, Stephen McAleavey and James Zavislan. Both reviews urged Rob’s reappointment as Dean, citing such achievements as growth in the faculty, introduction of new master’s programs, and a significant increase in undergraduate enrollment in engineering.

The appointment of Rob as Senior Vice President for Research occurred after a national search by a 16 person search committee. A significant number of external and internal candidates were considered. Four finalists were interviewed on campus by the search committee and by 25 other university senior and academic leaders, direct reports to the Senior Vice President, and a Board of Trustees Advisory Committee consisting of Bob Witmer, John Bruning, Carol Karp and Lou Lange. Let me especially express my gratitude to the search committee that included Richard Aslin, Loisa Bennetto, Gloria Culver, Diane Dalecki, Steve Dewhurst, Jonathan Friedberg, David Meyerhofer, Lamar Murphy, Gail Norris, Jerry Powell, Peter Robinson, Michael Scott, Patricia Sime, Charles Thornton and Mark Zupan as well as Mary Elizabath Taylor and Mike Honeysett from Witt/Kieffer and the senior and academic leaders, direct reports and Board Advisory Committee members who participated in this process.

Ultimately I received comments from every participant in this process and met with the Provost, the faculty decanal review committee, and the Senior Vice President for Research search committee before reaching a final decision. I was deeply impressed by the overwhelming support of those who interviewed the finalists for Rob as the first choice and the widespread belief that based on his performance as interim Senior Vice President, anticipated further staff support for his position as Senior Vice President and his skill at prioritization and delegation that he will effectively be able to handle both positions. Rob is an academic leader of extraordinary energy and focus. Few other academic leaders could as effectively wear both hats.

Since my June 2012 announcement of the division of the former Provost position into separate Provost and Senior Vice President for Research positions, several steps have been or will be taken that will better enable Rob as Senior Vice President to be effective.

First, the scope of the position of Senior Vice President for Research has been somewhat narrowed. As before, the Senior Vice President will be responsible for the Laboratory for Laser Energetics, sponsored research including the Sponsored University Research Group, Office of Research Projects Administration, the Health Sciences Center for Computational Innovation, the Center for Entrepreneurship, Office of Research Alliances, Office of Human Subjects Protection/Research Subjects Review Board and the Office of Technology Transfer. The Provost now will supervise University Information Technology with the exception of research IT which Rob will continue to oversee.

Second, Rob will continue to supervise our University-wide online efforts, but do so as Dean of the Hajim School. Recently Rob announced the hiring of Eric Fredericksen as a full-time coordinator of University online efforts.

Third, Rob will seek as soon as possible to hire a chief of staff in his role as Senior Vice President for Research as well as other administrative support. The chief of staff and other administrative support will be full-time positions.

Fourth, Rob will also early in his tenure as Senior Vice President prepare a strategic plan that, among other topics, will focus on core infrastructure, support and approaches to enabling our mission as a leading research university.

I am confident that Rob’s energy, strategic sense, great ability to listen and work well with a variety of constituencies, his strength as a communicator of University priorities will serve him well in the positions of Senior Vice President for Research and Dean of the Hajim School. I look forward to working with Rob for many years to come.