Buffkin / Baker Retained by Lees-McRae College to Find New Provost

April 2, 2021 – Executive recruitment firm Buffkin / Baker has been selected to assist in the search for a new provost for Lees-McRae College in Banner Elk, NC. Managing partner Martin M. Baker is leading the assignment. Lees-McRae College is seeking a creative and dynamic provost who will provide active and engaged leadership across campus, serve as an advocate for the faculty, and work to enhance the academic programs, rigor and success of the college and outcomes for its students, said the search firm.

Serving as the chief academic officer for the college, the provost is responsible for leading the academic affairs team in the planning, development, coordination, review, and administration of undergraduate and graduate programs, as well as all other aspects of academic life at Lees-McRae. The new academic leader will be expected to help the college more boldly fulfill its mission by ensuring that it do more to strengthen the uniqueness of the institution and fully embrace experiences that best prepare our students for their careers, said Buffkin / Baker. The individual should give precedence to student services and support and ensure these needs are considered as the school implements its facilities master plan and further develop our its strategic plan.

Reporting to the president, the provost serves as the primary representative and advocate for faculty within the administration and is the ranking college officer who acts in the absence of the president. “The provost should be an active and visible leader, become personally vested in the life of the college, have the skill and diplomacy to develop true vision for the academic program, and promote high expectations and accountability across campus and within the academic program,” Buffkin / Baker said. The new provost will be expected to be fiscally astute and a strong teammate within the administrative structure.

Candidates should have demonstrated success as a senior-level administrator in higher education, including proven ability to provide visionary leadership. They must also have a commitment to excellence in teaching, research, and service, including experience in experiential pedagogy, online programming and developing undergraduate research.

Application materials should include a letter addressing how the candidate’s experience matches the position requirements, including experience providing academic leadership at small colleges, and current curriculum vitae, says Buffkin / Baker.

Related: Buffkin / Baker Seeking Chief Diversity Officer for University of San Diego

With roots dating back to 1899, Lees–McRae College is a private college affiliated with the Presbyterian Church (USA). It is one of the few colleges to be named after two women, Suzanna Lees and Elizabeth McRae.

A Specialty Boutique Firm

Buffkin / Baker is a specialty boutique search firm composed of industry leaders in their respective fields and each has over a decade of retained search experience. Their focus as search professionals is to recruit leaders in digital marketing/advertising, technology, healthcare, media/entertainment, finance, higher education and non-profit. The firm serves public, private, venture and private equity-backed companies. Its office locations include Nashville, New York, Washington, D.C. and Winston Salem, NC with affiliate offices in London.

Recruiting Top-Notch Higher Education Leadership

In this brand new episode of ‘Talent Talks,’ Hunt Scanlon Media host Rob Adams is joined by Martin Baker, managing partner and Ken Carrick, partner from Buffkin Baker. Mr. Baker and Mr. Carrick take a deep dive into the current state of executive recruiting for the higher education sector and how this segment has been impacted by COVID-19. Listen Now!

Buffkin / Baker is a member of Panorama Search, an international federation of retained firms with 18 firms and over 30 offices globally. Buffkin / Baker formed in 2017 with the merger of the Buffkin Group and Baker and Associates LLC.

Based in Winston Salem, NC, Mr. Baker has been in executive search for 20 years. In addition to his role as managing partner, he is also head of the firm’s higher education practice. He previously worked in the Atlanta office of Korn Ferry, where he developed search strategy and executed searches for numerous senior-level appointments.  He began his career as a research associate with Saxton Bampfylde, an executive search and management assessment firm in London. He has conducted searches for the positions of CEO, CFO, CIO, provost, dean, director and professor, having worked on over 350 searches throughout his career.

Related: Buffkin / Baker to Assist Oklahoma State University in Search for Next President

Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media

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