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Presidential Search Profile


About the Presidential Search Profile

This position profile provides a description of Mount Mary University, a summary of the opportunities and challenges that it faces for the future, and a statement of the qualifications sought in the new president. Read the full presidential search profile.

Mount Mary University seeks a President with the professional background and the personal qualities who will lead and inspire the University in addressing the challenges and opportunities outlined in the full presidential search profile.

Executive Experience and Capabilities

The next President should have the experience and capabilities that create an excellent fit with the University’s distinguishing institutional characteristics—its status as a small, religiously affiliated women’s liberal arts institution, a growing graduate program, its distinctive mission and curriculum, its institutional history and traditions, and its location in Milwaukee. These include the following:

  • Qualifications: Candidates should ideally possess the academic credential of a terminal degree as well as have teaching experience, with a strong preference for an earned doctorate.
  • Faith: Candidates must be deeply rooted in Christian principles, and will understand and embrace the School Sisters values and the Catholic intellectual tradition.
  • Educational commitment. The President must bring a deep commitment to the values inherent at Mount Mary, with the education of women at the undergraduate level, and select professional and graduate programs for both men and women.
  • Uniting a community around the educational vision. The President must move comfortably among many constituent groups, being a mobilizer and motivator and building collaboration and consensus towards common goals. The President must cultivate discussion on what it means to be a diverse and inclusive institution as a Catholic women’s college in the liberal arts tradition.
  • Strategic planning and execution. In particular, in executing Mount Mary’s strategic plan, the President must also by nature be a strategic thinker, with the judgment to shape the University’s course with the balance of vision and realism.
  • Team leadership and management. An essential responsibility of the new President is to retain, advance, and complement an accountable, high performance team that provides energetic and innovative leadership.
  • Fund-raising. Essential in the next President is the talent for and interest in planning and executing major initiatives for raising endowment and operating funds and in being the principal spokesperson for the implementation of these initiatives. It will be critically important to further engage the University’s alumnae and to cultivate a new generation of donors.
  • Financial acumen. Along with fund-raising success, the President is expected to have demonstrated skills in prudent business and financial management and, in particular, to understand and effectively deal with the factors central to optimizing net revenue.
  • Diversity and Inclusion: The President needs to actively foster racial and ethnic inclusiveness and diversity across all dimensions of the University;
  • Sustainability. An academic institution in the 21st century must hold a conception of sustainability that integrates financial and environmental stewardship. The President will build on the commitment to sustainability working with the community to make the University’s environmental health a strong component of its fiscal health.

Personal Qualities

In addition to the above experience and capabilities, the President is also expected to possess certain essential personal qualities.

  • Informed decisiveness: the ability, after consulting and listening carefully, to make decisions firmly and expeditiously, and to follow through.
  • Courage: the strength and insight to take brave action, based on both careful analysis and intuition.
  • Intellectual curiosity: a natural passion for learning that characterizes the best in liberal arts education at undergraduate, graduate, and professional levels.
  • Trust in others: the confidence to delegate responsibility to capable colleagues, with a balance that avoids being either a micro-manager or a “hands-off” administrator.
  • Transparency: a commitment to openness in planning and decision-making, combined with confidence in the value of keeping the community well informed about University operations.
  • Approachability: a welcoming spirit that invites conversation with all members of the Mount Mary community, as well as their questions, participation, and contributions.
  • Visibility: a desire to participate actively in campus life and to be a regular and visible presence on campus and in the Milwaukee community.
  • Energy: the stamina necessary to meet the constant requirement for engaging with the University’s constituencies and outside groups and for sparking enthusiasm in others to give the best of themselves to the University’s cause.

Application Instructions

Maya Ranchod Kirkhope of Academic Search, Inc., Washington, D.C., is assisting Mount Mary University with this search. Nominations and expressions of interest may be submitted electronically to: Nominators or prospective candidates may direct inquiries or questions to Maya Kirkhope at (703) 380-9195.

Nominations and applications will be accepted until the position is filled, but materials received by October 19, 2016 are ensured full consideration. Application materials must be submitted electronically at The packet should consist of a substantive cover letter addressing the leadership characteristics noted above, a curriculum vitae, and full contact information for five professional references, none of whom will be contacted without the explicit permission of the candidate.

The successful candidate is expected to assume office by July 1, 2017. All nominations, applications, and inquiries will be held in full confidence until finalists are identified for on-campus interviews.

Mount Mary University practices equal opportunity employment as part of our ongoing commitment to diversity in our workplace.