Hardin-Simmons Presidential Search Committee Announced


Members of Hardin-Simmons University’s newly-formed Presidential Search Committee were announced in a recent email addressed to HSU faculty and staff from Mr. Jerry D. Sawyer, Chair of HSU’s Board of Trustees.

The 15-member committee, officially appointed by Sawyer on July 24 in consultation with other Board officers, includes representatives from HSU’s Board of Trustees, faculty, staff, alumni, and student body. The committee’s first meeting is tentatively scheduled for early September when a national search firm is expected to be selected.

“I would ask that all of the university community join together in making the search for our next HSU president a matter of prayer,” said Sawyer in his email.

The committee was formed less than a month after HSU’s 15th President, Dr. Lanny Hall, announced his retirement effective June 1, 2016. Hall was elected as HSU’s president for the second time in 2009 after previous service as HSU’s 13th president from 1991 to 2001. Hall also served as HSU’s chancellor from 2001 to 2003.

In the email, current Trustee Dr. Michael Waters was named Chair of the Presidential Search Committee. Waters, who also serves as both Vice-Chair of the Board of Trustees and Chair of the Board’s Governance Committee, is the retired Chief Executive Officer of Hendrick Health System in Abilene.

“I have the utmost confidence in Dr. Waters’ leadership abilities,” said Sawyer. “He will serve us well as we proceed through this extremely important process.”

A full listing of HSU’s Presidential Search Committee members includes (parenthetical references used for individuals with degrees from HSU):

Dr. Michael Waters (LL.D. ’91), Chair, Trustee, Retired CEO of Hendrick Health System, Dallas

  • Dr. Jud Powell (B.S. ’76, M.Ed. ’78, LL.D. ’11), Vice-Chair, Trustee, Financial Consultant, Abilene
  • Mrs. Melinda (Offner) Stricklin (’83), Trustee, Businesswoman, Colleyville
  • Mr. Joe Sharp (’58), Trustee, Retired Businessman, McKinney
  • Dr. George Newman, Trustee, Rancher, Retired Taylor County Judge and HSU Professor, Abilene
  • Dr. Lynn Craft, Trustee (LL.D. ’04), Trustee, Retired President and CEO, Baptist Foundation of Texas, Dallas
  • Dr. Richard Darden (D.Min. ’15), Trustee, Pastor, Abilene
  • Mr. Jerry Phillips (’67), Trustee, Businessman, Lubbock
  • Mrs. Louise (McIntire) Jones (’62), Trustee, Retired Educator, San Angelo
  • Mr. Jerry Sawyer, Trustee, Director of Administration, ScottHulse, El Paso
  • Dr. Rene Collins (M.Ed. ’89), Faculty, Associate Professor of Education, Head of the Department of Educational Studies
  • Mr. Larry Wheeler, Faculty, Associate Professor of Theater, Head of the Theater Department
  • Mrs. Britt (Yates) Jones (’84), Staff, Assistant Vice-President for Advancement, Director of Alumni Relations
  • Mrs. Candy (Thweatt) Noble (’83), Alumna, Community Volunteer, Lucas
  • Ms. Alexa Rae Gist, Current Student, HSU Student Body President

"Our Committee has scheduled its first meetings, and it is our intention to recommend a candidate to the full Board early next spring or, hopefully, sooner,” said Waters. “We will consult with the various constituencies of the University in this process, and will seek, with their help and God's leadership, to find the right person to lead Hardin-Simmons into its very bright future."

The Presidential Search Committee will play a critical role in not only seeking and vetting candidate finalists for presentation to the Board, but also in soliciting feedback from a wide variety of campus constituents, formulating a candidate profile, and selecting a national search firm. HSU’s Board of Trustees will ultimately make the final decision regarding the University’s next President.

“I am excited about the future for the University,” said Sawyer about the search. “I look forward to working with our Board of Trustees as we begin the process of entering into this new era.  I am convinced our Lord will continue to richly bless Hardin-Simmons.”

About Hardin-Simmons University

Founded in 1891, Hardin-Simmons University is a church-related university affiliated with the Baptist General Convention of Texas committed to providing excellence in education enlightened by Christian faith and values. With its 13:1 student-to-faculty ratio, students enjoy personal attention as they pursue more than 70 fields of undergraduate study and 20 graduate study programs, including the Doctor of Physical Therapy, Doctor of Ministry, andDoctorate in Leadership programs. Pre-professional programs include dentistry, engineering, medicine, law, pharmacy, and seminary. For more information about HSU, please visit www.hsutx.edu or follow @hsutx on Twitter or the Hardin-Simmons University page on Facebook.


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