Senior Vice President/Provost Search

Welcome to the official homepage of Wilkes University’s Senior Vice President/Provost Search Committee

Wilkes University has selected David M. Ward, Ph.D. as its senior vice president and provost. In this role, Ward will serve as the chief academic officer of Wilkes, leading the University’s scholarship, programs and initiatives, and working with the deans and faculty of its six academic schools and colleges. He will start at Wilkes in June.

News Release

Here, you can access information about the Senior Vice President/Provost (SVP) search process. The search process is guided by a search committee that includes faculty, students, administrators and staff. The search committee is working with search consultants, Dr. Stuart Dorsey and Dr. Mahauganee Shaw from Academic Search.

Position Profile

If you have any questions about the search, please contact committee chair Paul S. Adams at .

Search Committee Members

The SVP/Provost Search Committee has nine members, as set by the Faculty Handbook (4.5.2).

4.5.2 Provost Search Committee A Provost search committee shall be an ad hoc committee consisting of four elected full time faculty, two students, two administrators, and one non-administrative staff. The search committee shall be formed by the President. The President shall make the final choice of the Provost following the receipt of recommendations from the committee.

The members are:

  • Paul S. Adams, Vice President for Student Affairs, Chair
  • Maria Grandinetti, Associate Professor of Nursing
  • Thomas Hamill, Associate Professor of English
  • Susan Hritzak, Registrar
  • Lisa Kadlec, Associate Professor of Biology
  • Jonathan Kuiken, Associate Professor of History
  • Kya Lewis, Graduate Student
  • Daniel Maldonado, Pharmacy Student (P-2)
  • Jeanne Rabel, Advising Coordinator, University College
    • Supporting the search committee:
    • Bridget Giunta, Executive Assistant to the President
    • Stuart Dorsey, Academic Search Consultant
    • Mahauganee Shaw, Academic Search Consultant


Search Committee Charge

Presented by President Greg Cant on November 30, 2020

On behalf of the entire University community, I thank you for your service on the Senior Vice President/Provost Search Committee. Your selection for this important committee is recognition of your value to Wilkes and your dedication to its success. The selection of the next Senior Vice President/Provost will be one of the most important decisions we make for the future of Wilkes.

By the end of March, I ask that you present me with an unranked list of two to four candidates whom you believe can serve successfully as our SVP/Provost at Wilkes. In an effort to identify the best candidates for the position our search should be conducted on a national level, while also being open and welcoming of internal candidates. This search presents us with an opportunity to diversify the leadership of Wilkes. With that in mind, I ask that we do everything in our power to attract a pool of qualified diverse candidates.

Our next SVP/Provost will continue to be our chief academic officer and will serve as the University’s chief executive officer in the absence of the President. The successful candidate should have significant administrative experience, have experience as a full-time faculty member and be able to provide the intellectual leadership, energy and passion to assure we achieve the academic goals of the University. If possible, I would prefer that the candidate selected has held an academic leadership position of consequence at another institution and has been deemed highly successful in that role.

Academic Search, through Dr. Stuart Dorsey and Dr. Mahauganee Shaw, will provide counsel and professional services in support of our search. Drs. Dorsey and Shaw bring a breadth of higher education experience, significant search experience as well as an extensive network of contacts. Our committee and our consultants will work closely with our Office of Human Resources to ensure that our search complies with all Wilkes policies and pertinent state and federal laws and regulations.

I have asked Paul Adams, Vice President for Student Affairs, to chair the search committee. In his role as chair, Dr. Adams’ responsibilities will include, but are not limited to, convening and chairing search committee meetings, coordinating the search with Academic Search, preparing materials for distribution to the search committee and serving as the committee’s spokesperson. As for my role in the search process, while I won’t be a member of the search committee and participate in all meetings, I will be engaged with the committee and participate in the interviews at the semi-finalist stage.

I ask that the Committee’s process be transparent, but with the understanding that the names of those who apply or who are nominated, as well as the nature, content and documents related to the Committee’s deliberations, be kept strictly confidential until we reach the finalist stage. At the finalist stage we will share with the campus the names and CV’s of our remaining candidates. Confidentiality is essential for us to be able to recruit a highly qualified pool of candidates. To that end, I am asking that the Committee report periodically to the campus community, providing as much information as possible, but bearing in mind the requirements of confidentiality.

Again, you have my sincere thanks for taking on this critical assignment. I look forward to meeting with you and having the opportunity to share ideas and answer questions you have about the role of SVP/Provost at Wilkes.

Wilkes University Senior Vice President and Provost



December 2-3

Academic Search consultants meet with constituent groups.
Organizational meeting of the search committee.

December 14

Search consultants provide draft of profile and advertising plan.

December 15-21

Search consultants and committee finalize ad and profile. Advertising plan is approved.

December 22 -January 2

Ads are placed (allowing for possible office closings)

December 26 – February 12

Recruiting and evaluation. Academic Search advertises position in approved print and/or online media. Profile and ad sent to relevant sources and individuals. Academic Search will set up a secure website containing all application materials accessible only to the consultants and search committee members.

February 3

Search committee meeting to review electronic access to applications and complete a credential review exercise (done by video/teleconference).

February 12

Deadline for full consideration of applications.

February 23

Each committee member submits to Academic Search a list of “top 10” candidates of interest. Lists should be unranked.

February 25

Consultants and committee meet to select semifinalists for initial interviews.

March 11-12

Search Committee conducts semi finalist interviews with Academic Search observing; finalists selected for campus visits.

March 25-26

Finalist interviews. (Consultants do not attend.)

March 29

Search committee meets to review and present finalists to the President. Consultants available by teleconference.


Appointment made and announced.

July 1, 2021

Appointee assumes office.

News and Communications

On behalf of the Senior Vice President/Provost Search Committee, I am pleased to provide an update on the progress of our search. Our committee began its work in late November with the assistance of Academic Search, a national firm that specializes in recruitment and placement services for the higher education industry. The announcement for the position and the position profile were shared on a number of recruitment sites and with an array of professional organizations to develop our pool of candidates. These postings have also resulted in a number of nominations for the position. The direct recruitment period extended from early January through February 12. 

There has been a high level of interest in the position from a broad and diverse pool of candidates. The committee is currently reviewing the materials for all candidates and will meet later in February to develop our first-round interview list. We expect first-round interviews (held in a virtual format) to be conducted March 11 and 12. Our plan is to invite finalists to campus in late March. Please remember that this is among the most time-intensive and confidential phases of the search, so our next update for the campus will likely be when we reach the finalist phase.

The search committee has launched a web site to share information with you. The members of the search committee are listed below. Thank you to everyone for your input and support. If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.

Paul S. Adams
Search Committee Chair

Search Committee Members

  • Paul S. Adams, Vice President for Student Affairs, Chair
  • Maria Grandinetti, Associate Professor of Nursing
  • Thomas Hamill, Associate Professor of English
  • Susan Hritzak, Registrar
  • Lisa Kadlec, Associate Professor of Biology
  • Jonathan Kuiken, Associate Professor of History
  • Kya Lewis, Graduate Student
  • Daniel Maldonado, Pharmacy Student (P-2)
  • Jeanne Rabel, Advising Coordinator, University College