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Tyler dean search close to finish

The search stalled over the summer after administrative upheaval.

The Tyler School of Art Search Advisory Committee is finalizing its search for the school’s next dean after a three-month hiatus over the summer.

Susan Cahan, Reed Kroloff, Christopher Bratton and Rachel Schreiber are the four finalists being considered for the position.

Cahan is an associate dean at Yale College. Kroloff is a principal of Jones Kroloff, an architecture design firm in Washington, D.C. Bratton is the former president of the School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts University in Boston. Schreiber is the current provost and senior vice president at the San Francisco Art Institute.

Kroloff came to Main Campus on Monday and will return Tuesday for an open meeting with Tyler faculty. Bratton will present to students and faculty on Wednesday and hold open meetings for Tyler students and faculty on Thursday. Schreiber and Cahan visited Main Campus last week.

David Boardman, chair of the committee searching for Tyler’s dean and dean of the Klein College of Media and Communication, said former Provost Hai-Lung Dai’s dismissal and former President Neil Theobald’s resignation halted the search for several months.

“It’s hard to attract good people if it appears that your university is in some state of disarray,” Boardman said.

The committee resumed reviewing and interviewing applicants when faculty returned to campus in August.

Temple hired Isaacson, Miller — a search firm with offices in Boston, Washington, D.C. and San Francisco — to aid in the selection of potential candidates. Candidates either applied for the position or were solicited by Isaacson, Miller, said Boardman.

Isaacson, Miller declined to comment on the search. The firm also led the dean search for the College of Liberal Arts last year.

The search committee for Tyler’s dean is made up of Tyler faculty members, faculty members from other colleges, representatives from the provost’s office and an undergraduate and graduate student from Tyler, Boardman said.

The committee met with candidates last month for a series of confidential interviews. The finalists who are visiting Temple this week will present their academic and professional qualifications to Tyler students and faculty, Boardman said.

The final selection of the Tyler dean is made by the provost and university president, although students and faculty are invited to give feedback, Boardman said. The exact date of the final decision is not known yet, but Boardman expects it to be by the end of the academic year.

Boardman said faculty voices were especially important in the search for a new dean at Tyler. Faculty members are looking for someone who has a strong vision for the future of Tyler, a healthy respect for its history and legacy, the creativity to help lead an art school in the 21st century, “which has a different set of challenges than there has been in the past” and someone who will have the skills to raise money for the school, he added.

Interim Dean Hester Stinnett will not be involved in the selection process, Boardman said.

“She has done a great job of keeping the school moving forward,” Boardman said. “That’s part of what has made it such an attractive position.”

Amanda Lien can be reached at amanda.lien@temple.edu or on Twitter @amandajlien.

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