Finalists named for UW System president - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Finalists named for UW System president

Raymond W. Cross Raymond W. Cross
Robert L. King Robert L. King
Peter H. Garland Peter H. Garland

MADISON (WKOW) -- University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents president, Michael Falbo, announced Thursday morning the names of the three finalists to be considered for the System's top post.

An 18-member search and screen committee recommended the finalists.

The only finalist from inside the UW System is Raymond Cross, the current chancellor for University of Wisconsin Colleges and University of Wisconsin-Extension.

Peter Garland is the executive vice chancellor/chief operating officer at the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education.

And Robert King serves as president of the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education.

Assembly Higher Education Committee chairman Rep. Steve Nass (R-Whitewater) tells 27 News he's "thrilled" Cross is in the mix, but declined further comment, in deference to the continuing selection process. Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, Sen. Alberta Darling, and Rep. Sondy Pope, who have commented on the importance of the president's position in the past, were all unavailable for comment. Cross has overseen the Governor Walker-endorsed flexible degree option program.

Former UW-System President Kevin Reilly clashed with top republican lawmakers last year over the system's more than $1 billion dollar surplus, at a time of a trend of increasing student tuition, with some lawmakers claiming a new president was needed to restore trust with the legislature. King declines comment on the appropriateness of the former surplus' size, but tells 27 News his experience as a former New York state lawmaker could be beneficial.

"I've done some other things outside of higher education, that I think are of value in a position like this," King tells 27 News.

Cross issued a short statement, describing being "humbled" by his status as a finalist. King praised Cross, noting the two worked together in the State University of New York system. Garland has yet to return a call from 27 News seeking comment on his selection as a finalist.

UW-System spokesperson David Giroux says the approved salary range for the job is $399,000-$598,500. The president oversees twenty-six campuses, and their thousands of employees and students.

Falbo and the Regent selection committee plan to interview the finalists on Monday and will eventually recommend one candidate to the full Board of Regents, which must approve the appointment. The full Board will take up the recommendation at its January 9 meeting. 

Each finalist will participate in a statewide public forum via video conference, offering opportunities for faculty, staff, students, and community members to interact with candidates and provide feedback.

The schedule and information about those public conversations is posted here.




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