STATESBORO, GA (WTOC) - The Board of Regents for Georgia Southern has named their sole finalist for the President position that was left vacant by Dr. Jaimie Herbert, who held the position for two years.
Dr. Kyle Marrero is the only candidate that is being considered for the job. This does not mean that the Board of Regents has finalized their decision; rather, that Dr. Marrero is the only one that the Board is speaking with at the time.
The search committee held a forum in October for faculty, staff, graduates and current students to speak about the qualities they would like to see in a new President.
“So what we’re looking for, on one hand, are refinements. People have had more time to think about this. They’ve had time to review the job advertisement so they have a chance to add input if they have anything they want to add to that,” said Dr. Dustin Anderson, Committee Chair. “There’s no wall around campus. There’s no physical barrier. There should be no intellectual barrier, no emotional barrier."
Some talked about what they consider to be a power struggle between Savannah and Statesboro over the campuses since the consolidation. They said the next president must be able to bring campuses together.
“It’s as important for Statesboro to feel good about this president as it is for Savannah to feel good about them, and Hinesville,” said Benjy Thompson, GSU Graduate. “He has a reputation for being very energetic, very engaged with the local community. He has a reputation for making positive change in a local community.”
“I think some things at the university have been influx, so the stability of having a permanent president will be appreciated here in the business community as we’ve had good relationships with the university’s presidents,” said Bob Mikell, Chairman, Chamber of Commerce.
“I hope he’s like Dale Lick and Brooks Keel. I hope he’s a mixture of them because of both their community involvement,” said Roy Thompson, Bulloch County Chairman.
We reached out to Statesboro’s Mayor, Jonathan McCollar, who issued this statement:
“Dr. Kyle Marrero is undoubtedly a great selection to be the new president of Georgia Southern University. The success that he has had at the University of West Georgia is a testament to his ability to lead. His experience and skills is exactly what our beloved university needs at this crucial moment in its history. Congratulations!”
WTOC has been following this news closely since Dr. Herbert’s departure. Stay with us as we work to bring updates to this story.