Posted by Philip Poole on 2005-05-27

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.--Samford University's presidential search committee met for the first time May 13-14 to begin the process of finding the University's 18th president.

According to committee leaders, the meeting was largely organizational. The committee developed a process for the search and set the next meeting for July 15-16.

The 17-member committee also adopted a code of ethics which each member signed. The document asks each committee member to respect the confidentiality of the search process, to protect the rights of individuals nominated and underscores the importance of maintaining the highest ethical standards, according to committee co-chair H. Hobart Grooms. Grooms, a Birmingham attorney, serves as co-chair with former Alabama Gov. Albert Brewer of Birmingham.

The committee has not yet developed a specific timeline for the search process, although current Samford President Thomas E. Corts has announced his intention to retire by the end of the 2005-06 academic year.

The committee plans to advertise the position in several regional and national publications over the next few weeks and solicit nominations from the University's constituents, including alumni, faculty, staff, students and donors. The committee also will invite chief executive officers and chief academic officers from Samford's peer institutions to nominate candidates, said Sarah C. Latham, committee secretary and Samford's director of institutional research.

Latham emphasized, however, that anyone may submit a written nomination to the committee.


Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. The Wall Street Journal ranks Samford 1st nationally for student engagement and U.S. News & World Report ranks Samford 37th in the nation for best undergraduate teaching and 97th nationally for best value. Samford enrolls 5,758 students from 48 states and 22 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference, and ranks 3rd nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.