Louisiana Political News Wire
Panel set up to find Clausen's successor
by JORDAN BLUM - Advocate (excerpt)
The Louisiana Board of Regents formed an eight-person search committee Thursday tasked with finding the next state commissioner of higher education. While the search process may take about six months, Regents Chairman Artis Terrell said a behind-the-scenes national search should lead to an interim commissioner being chosen in the next two weeks or so. The job will officially be vacated July 1 when outgoing Commissioner Sally Clausenís resignation becomes official.
Clausen stepping down comes in the wake of her controversy developed about her secretive one-day retirement and rehiring that netted her an extra $90,000 in accrued vacation and sick leave time. Apart from looking in-state for the interim replacement, Terrell said the Board of Regents is seeking national higher education experts who may have recently retired or who are between jobs. But the national search to find a permanent replacement will be transparent and comprehensive, he said.
The Board of Regents is the stateís higher education coordinating and policy body that is tasked with leading the way for college improvements. The search committee will be composed of Regents members Maurice Durbin of Denham Springs, Bob Levy of Ruston, Ingrid Labat of New Orleans, Bubba Rasberry of Shreveport, Charlotte Bollinger of Lockport, Vic Stelly of Lake Charles and Mary Ellen Roy of New Orleans. Durbin and Levy will serve as chairwoman and chairman, respectively. Officials in Gov. Bobby Jindalís office have said they expect to have a say into both the interim and permanent jobs. The Legislature also intervened with legislation mandated Senate confirmation on whomever is picked as well as the need to have Joint Legislative Committee on the Budget approval on the salary.
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