Cal State San Marcos Presidential Search to Begin in May

(April 29, 2003) -- The California State University Board of Trustees will begin the search in May for a new president of Cal State San Marcos to replace current President Alex Gonzalez, who will assume the presidency of CSU Sacramento this summer.

The first meeting of the search committee will be held from 10:30 a.m. to noon on Friday, May 9, at the campus in Craven Hall, Room 5302. This is the first and only meeting of the committee that is an open meeting.

Under the CSU Board of Trustees' presidential selection policy, adopted in 1997, the chair of the board establishes a five-person Trustees' Committee for the Selection of the President, which is composed of the chair of the board, the chancellor and three trustees, one of whom is designated as committee chair by the board chair. Board policy also requires the chair to appoint an advisory group to the trustees' committee. The Advisory Committee to the Trustees' Committee for the Selection of the President is composed of representatives of the faculty, staff, students and alumni, as well as a member of the campus advisory board, all of whom are selected by the campus. Also on the advisory committee are a vice president or academic dean from the campus, and a president of another CSU campus, both selected by the chancellor.

Trustee Robert Foster will chair the Trustees' Search Committee for the Selection of the President. The other trustee members of the committee are Shailesh Mehta and Fred Pierce. CSU Board of Trustees' Chair Debra S. Farar and CSU Chancellor Charles B. Reed are also members of the committee.

Members of the Advisory Committee to the Trustees' Committee for the Selection of the President are Bonnie B. Biggs, CSUSM librarian; Honey Folk, president, CSUSM Associated Students; Stephen Lilly, dean, CSUSM College of Education; John R. Montanari, chair, CSUSM Academic Senate; Richard Serpe, director, CSUSM Social and Behavioral Research Institute; Lourdes Shahamiri, CSUSM Academic Programs; Glenn Schwartz, CSUSM Alumni Association; Kenneth Lounsbery, chair, CSUSM University Advisory Board; and Milton A. Gordon, president, California State University, Fullerton.

The purpose of the first meeting is to discuss the role of the committee, set the schedule of meetings, review the descriptions of the campus and the presidential position, and discuss any other business related to the search process.

It is expected that the committee will not meet over the summer, but an advertisement for the presidential vacancy will be placed in the Chronicle of Higher Education in May. The committee will then meet again in September to review resumes and select those to interview. Those interviews would take place in October, followed by campus visits by each candidate. It is expected that the Board of Trustees will select a new president in mid-November.

Current Cal State San Marcos President Gonzalez will assume the presidency of CSU Sacramento in July. Gonzalez, 57, was the second president of San Marcos. He was appointed as interim in 1997, and was made permanent in 1998 by CSU Chancellor Reed. Prior to San Marcos, Gonzalez, a professor of psychology, spent 18 years at California State University, Fresno, starting as a faculty member. He served as the provost and vice president for academic affairs for six years at Fresno.

CSU Chancellor Reed will name an interim president for San Marcos at the May 13-14 Board of Trustees meeting. That person would not be in the search pool, and would serve until the new president arrived on the campus.

For information about the presidential search process, see Trustee Policy on the Selection of Presidents.

The California State University is the largest system of senior higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, nearly 408,000 students and 45,000 faculty and staff. Since the system was created in 1961, it has awarded 2 million degrees. The CSU is renowned for the quality of its teaching and for the job-ready graduates it produces. Its mission is to provide high-quality, affordable education to meet the ever-changing needs of the people of California. With its commitment to excellence, diversity and innovation, the CSU is the university system that is working for California. See

Contact: Colleen Bentley-Adler, (562) 951-4801,

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Last Updated: 29 April 2003

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