December 13, 2021 – R. William Funk & Associates, which specializes in recruitment for roles in higher education, has been tapped by Pacific University inForest Grove, OR, to lead its search for a new president. “We are extremely pleased that Pacific will have the support of one of the most effective presidential recruiters in the country,” said presidential search committee chair and Pacific University trustee Mark Frandsen.
In September, Lesley M. Hallick, who has been president of Pacific University since 2009, announced her plans to retire next summer. Since the announcement, the board of trustees appointed a search committee for the university’s 18th president and chose R. William Funk & Associates to conduct the search. The search firm will work closely with the committee on establishing the timeline and process for the search and recruiting candidates. The firm is expected to hold preliminary meetings with trustees and other Pacific stakeholders this month.
“It has been an incredible privilege to serve as president of Pacific University, and I will sorely miss the dedicated faculty, staff and senior leadership with whom I have worked these past 12 years,” Dr. Hallick said. “There is never a perfect time to step away, and there are always new challenges and opportunities one would like to see through to completion. However, as we turn the corner from what we accomplished together during the decade of Vision 2020 and start to move beyond COVID and back into the development of Vision 2030, I believe it is the right time for a leader who will implement that vision to be able to help develop it.”
The 17th president in Pacific’s 172-year history, Dr. Hallick has led the institution through a period of unparalleled growth and strength, said the university. Her tenure has been marked by impressive fiscal health and stability, investment in facilities and infrastructure, focus on diversity and inclusion, and some of the most successful fundraising years in the institution’s history.
“The board of trustees congratulate Lesley and laud her accomplishments through her 13 years of service to the university,” said Gerald Yoshida, chair of the board. “We are especially grateful that Lesley delayed her planned retirement by over a year in order to successfully see Pacific through the COVID crisis. Her dedication and leadership have well positioned Pacific and our students for the future and the university has never been stronger.”
Dr. Hallick has overseen the expansion of academic programs in the liberal arts and sciences, education, health professions and optometry, as well as the establishment of the Pacific University College of Business, the university’s first doctorate programs and the return of football.
She also has facilitated the expansion of the university’s research capacity and support structures, culminating in the recognition of Pacific by the National Science Foundation as the top private research university in the Northwest for the past three years.
“In the meantime, while the board is managing the search for the next president, we will not be standing still,” Hallick said. “There is a great deal to be accomplished this year, so buckle up and stay tuned.”
Pacific University is a comprehensive university with undergraduate, graduate and professional degree programs in the liberal arts and sciences, business, education, health professions and optometry. It serves more than 3,700 students from campuses in Forest Grove, Hillsboro, Eugene, and Woodburn, OR. Pacific is consistently ranked among the top universities in the country by organizations such as U.S. News & World Report, which most recently ranked the university as a top school, a best value, and a leader in serving veterans and promoting social mobility for its graduates.
Higher Education Specialists
R. William Funk & Associates is an executive search firm specializing in higher education executive recruitment. The firm has recruited chancellors/presidents two-thirds of all public AAU universities. The firm has also recruited presidents or chancellors to more than one-half of U.S. News & World Report’s recently published “Top 30 National Universities.” The firm has conducted more than 425 searches for college and university presidents and chancellors as well as an even greater number of provosts, deans, and various vice presidents.
R. William Funk & Associates has recruited chancellors/presidents for two-thirds of all public AAU universities, according to Central Washington University. Additionally, it has been recognized by the Women’s Network of the American Council on Education (ACE) for its work in recruiting women and minorities to senior levels of higher education. The firm has broken the color and/or gender line in president searches at more than 40 institutions around the country, making in one of the most highly sought-after search firms across the sector.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media