Greenwood / Asher & Associates Finds President for University of South Florida

March 26, 2019 – A number of top colleges around the country are looking for high-profile leaders to take them into the future. In most cases, executive recruiting firms have had a hand in some aspect of the search and selection process.

Greenwood / Asher & Associates has recruited Steven Currall as the president of the University of South Florida (USF). If approved by the state board of governors next week, Mr. Currall will replace Judy Genshaft, who is retiring on July 1 after a 19-year tenure at the school.

In addition, Greenwood / Asher & Associates must still complete a deeper background check of Dr. Currall. Jan Greenwood said preliminary background checks of the four finalists showed no issues with any of them. She expects Dr. Currall’s further review will be complete by the time the governors next meet.

“It was clear to me, that as (we) went through the process that we knew we had the right leader, someone that could continue the trajectory that we have right now at the University of South Florida,” said board chair Brian Lamb.

“I think he’s a really good choice,” said Dr. Genshaft. “He has both the private and public academic experience, fund-raising, research, the whole profile is great, and he’s got enthusiasm for the next era.”

Dr. Currall has been provost and vice president for academic affairs at Southern Methodist University since 2016. He oversees all academic activities, helps manage the university’s budget and has led a campus-wide strategic planning process. Previously, he was dean of the graduate school of management at University of California, Davis, and the chancellor’s senior advisor for strategic projects and initiatives. Dr. Currall was also vice chair of the board for the University of California system’s Global Health Institute. In addition, he has held leadership positions at University College London and worked at AAU institutions Rice University, the University of Chicago and Cornell University.

Related: Recruitment for Higher Education Leaders Heats Up and Shifts

“Big shoes, amazing legacy that president Genshaft has created here, and lots of momentum,” said Dr. Currall. “I just hope that we can continue that and maybe even increase the upward slope of that trajectory as well to take the university to even greater heights.”


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Founded in 1956, USF is the fourth-largest public university in Florida, with an enrollment of more than 48,000. It is home to 14 colleges, offering more than 80 undergraduate majors and more than 130 graduate, specialist, and doctoral-level degree programs. The university has an annual budget of $1.5 billion and an annual economic impact of over $3.7 billion.

Recruiting University Leadership

Greenwood / Asher & Associates is a women-owned executive search firm with a diverse consulting team and extensive experience in executive search, consulting and training for education markets including elementary, secondary, higher education, university systems, campuses and non-profit organizations including associations, service and cultural institutions. Greenwood / Asher recently led president searches for University of Florida and Ohio State, among others. The firm is led by president Jan Greenwood and partner Betty Turner Asher.

Related: Why Universities Have Stepped Up Efforts to Involve Search Firms

Dr. Greenwood is a pioneer in U.S. higher education, having been the first woman president of a public four-year and graduate institution in Virginia. She is a licensed psychologist with experience as a psychometrist and with post-doctoral training in group methods. She brings these skill-sets to her work with clients, candidates and search committees.

Ms. Asher brings to executive search, consulting and training a unique background of leadership service at all levels of higher education institutions and systems, in academics and student affairs and in public and private institutions.

Related: Academic Sector Pumping Big Fees Into Search Firms

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

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