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Provost candidate #3, Jorge Jose, VPR at IU

Last updated on 01/31/2014

1/30/2014 update: Betsy Hammond of the Oregonian has some details, here. A more complete story here includes quotes from Conoley saying she had not sought the UO job, was approached by UO about applying, and made clear all along that she was interested in the Long Beach president’s job.

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#3 Jorge Jose statement and vita here (fixed). Public talk is Monday at 4:30 at the Art Museum. The schedule for his meetings with the usual JH suspects is here. JH has now removed the Jane Conoley info from their website, here’s a backup.

In other news, Coltrane will hold a public session on “academic planning” today at 3:00PM in Gerlingher. He’s posted a few docs here. Maybe he’ll tell us what our “clusters of excellence” and fundraising priorities are, and explain how Gottfredson picked them?

1/29/2014 update:

Dear Campus Community,

Jane Conoley, one of the finalists for our Provost position, has announced today that she has accepted a position as president of California State University Long Beach. We wish her well in her academic leadership position.


Michael Gottfredson, President

The name of #3 should be posted soon, here.

1/20/2014: Jane Conoley, provost candidate #2, will give her public talk Tuesday, January 21, from 4:30 to 6:00 p.m. at the JSMA Ford Lecture Hall

From the date and wording of her application letter, it seems she was only recently contacted by the Isaacson Miller search firm, which has conducted many searches for JH, both successful and not so successful.

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1/16/2014: Provost candidate #4 has withdrawn. #2?

Dear Campus Community,

I am pleased to announce the second candidate for the position of Senior Vice President and Provost. Jane Conoley will be interviewing on campus on January 21 and 22. I encourage you to attend her public presentation and reception on Tuesday, January 21, from 4:30 to 6:00 p.m. at the JSMA Ford Lecture Hall (please enter through the front entrance).

Conoley is dean and professor of Counseling, Clinical, and School Psychology at the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education at the University of California, Santa Barbara. You will find background information for her application on the president’s website. In addition you will find a complete interview schedule, information on the public presentation, as well as a link to provide feedback following the presentation.

Conoley is the second of three finalists for the position. The third candidate will be on campus February 3 and 4. A fourth finalist has withdrawn from consideration.

Please join me in welcoming Jane Conoley for her interview.

Michael Gottfredson, President

1/13/2014: Provost candidate #1: Scott Coltrane, Oregon

It doesn’t look like these candidates are going to spend a lot of time meeting with UO faculty – just a brief lunch with the FAC. The Deans only get a group breakfast. The rest is one-on-ones with usual JH suspects. No meeting with heads or with the union leadership, or science PI’s. The schedules for the other candidates will be similar, so presumably they will get most of their info from googling UO Matters.

Candidate #1: Scott Coltrane, Interim Provost, University of Oregon. Schedule here. Public presentation Monday, January 13, 4:30 – 6:00 p.m., Ford Lecture Hall, Jordon Schnitzer Museum of Art. Statement of purpose here:

Since I assumed the office on July I. 2013 I have reformed various processes and adjusted institutional structures to improve the operations of the University. For example, I reorganized staffing in the Provost’s office; reconfigured advisory committees and reporting structures (Academic Leadership Team, Leadership Council; Vice Provosts’ Council): initiated a new strategic planning process; coordinated the President’s and Deans* selection of Clusters of Excellence for the upcoming capital campaign; intervened in research management and oversight issues; established new consultation groups (Student Advising, Undergraduate Research. English Language Instruction); oversaw collective bargaining and CBA implementation processes; facilitated integrated budgeting processes: represented the UO on OUS Provost’s Council and other statewide bodies; coordinated planning for OUS transition to a new UO Board of Trustees; helped develop new academic initiatives; and encouraged new administrative structures for oversight of ongoing projects like Big Ideas and other strategic initiatives.

Candidate #2: January 21 – 22
Candidate #3: January 27 – 28
Candidate #4: February 3 – 4


  1. Anonymous 01/08/2014

    We need a fresh perspective around here, not someone hoping to coast through last few years of their administrative career.

  2. Anonymous2 01/09/2014

    We should worry more about having the right perspective. We have had plenty of new and fresh.

    • dog 01/09/2014

      provide an example of “plenty of new and fresh”

    • Vlad 01/13/2014

      Mg and ke are new but not right, at lest so far

  3. Vlad 01/09/2014

    Yes, let’s bring in someone new and fresh like MG or KE

  4. Anonymous 01/09/2014

    JH admins don’t coast. They swoop and soar with magnificent salaries, free cars, and paid vacations to sporting events for their families and friends. If they are complete losers (you know who I mean don’t you?), they are awarded the same salary and extravagant benefits while they hide behind paper thin “job” descriptions created from nothing, and filled without search. Exactly what one would want for the end of their career.

  5. anon 01/09/2014

    Here would be my statement of purpose:

    I will immediately conduct a thorough review of every top administrative position on campus to assess it’s purpose and contribution toward UO goals. I will establish clear benchmarks and goals for each position and communicate those expectations to those holding those positions. At the end of one year, I will evaluate each person in those positions against those clearly defined goals and benchmarks. Those that aren’t performing to the standards of a top tier University like we aspire to be will be replaced through an International Search.

    I will also begin cleaning out the “Special Assistant” closet and as the funds from those positions that aren’t mission critical become available, I will divert them to much needed faculty lines.

    I will also begin a thorough evaluation of the Athletic Department’s financial draw on the general fund and begin the process of reducing that to zero…or better yet, to a net gain to Academics.

  6. anon 01/09/2014

    The schedule is very telling and predictable from a President who is disconnected from faculty. A one hour lunch with the FAC is insufficient vetting by the faculty for the future Chief Academic Officer.

  7. Anon 01/09/2014

    Coltrane’s the one. I predict he’ll be a so-so provost, but a good president, and a new UO president is priority #1. So we should have a credible alternative ready to go.

  8. michigan duck 01/10/2014

    What are the odds that in his meeting with faculty he says, “asked and answered, next question”?

  9. anon 01/10/2014

    can we talk about the utter horseshit that is “Several committee members agreed that video taping was important and as a group we pushed back but the word came down this morning that these presentations will NOT be videotaped.”
    (source: email from earlier today)

  10. Professor Wait A. Minute 01/10/2014

    I still support Coltrane. I think he has already proven himself above “so so.” Of course who can tell after a “really bad” one. Are we allowed to say “piss poor” on this website?

  11. can't decide 01/10/2014

    There is no reason to support or not support Coltrane and, unfortunately, it doesn’t really matter. He was a popular choice for interim and has been securing his bland take for a few months now to succeed on par with Gottfredson in winning the award for “he’s our guy, rah-rah”. Just don’t expect him to declare anything substantial.

    The new board comes into play soon and this is pre-season. All contracts depend upon a happy independent new board.

  12. Why not the best? 01/11/2014

    After reading Coltrane’s statement, I am still not clear what he’s done to make him the people’s choice–other than serve on every committee ever created. Here is his own summary of his CAS achievements:

    The review of his dean performance, conducted by M Moffitt, “suggested that my work style allowed me to enact various incremental changes within the college, including staffing and organizational refinements, budgetary stabilization, technology enhancements, educational policy reform, research and interdisciplinary program promotion, fundraising success, and advances in strategic planning, communications, diversity hiring and morale building.”

    Setting aside the total lack of specifics, are we to be impressed that his work style “allowed” him to make “incremental changes” in all these areas?

    We need someone with youth, vision , and ability to answer his/her emails.

    • Anonymous 01/13/2014

      Morale building? Is that a joke?

  13. Faculty consultant 01/11/2014

    “oversaw collective bargaining and CBA implementation processes;”

    So Scott’s going to take the blame for the restrictions on outside consulting activities that Rudnick tried to implement? What about all the other crap the administration tried to pull? Will he promise not to hire Harrang again? Didn’t they just get hired to do the GTFF negotiations?

  14. Anon on #2 01/16/2014

    Looks like she’s overlapped with Gottfredson at UT and Espy at Nebraska, so at least she knows what she’s getting into.

  15. ex-Nebraskan 01/16/2014

    Oh no! Not another ex-Nebraskan!

  16. Anonymous 01/16/2014

    U Oughta Meditate on why one of the candidates withdrew after seeing the comments on this site after the first interview. Funny how a site that’s supposed to improve our administration keeps us from hiring good ones.

  17. uomatters Post author | 01/16/2014

    I’m thinking a few skeptical comments on a muckraking blog are unlikely to scare off a competent external candidate. Particularly a finalist – who would have done their own research already, and have been briefed by the search firm, and met with the search committee.

    Job candidates at this level also have their own network of peers and mentors, which probably involves far more substantive information about UO, and how good or bad a career move it is to work here for President Gottfredson, than anything posted on this blog by me or its commenters.

    People withdraw from searches for many reasons. Getting an offer that clearly dominates is the most obvious one. It’s a bad career move not to withdraw at that point.

    UO’s provost search is behind schedule, reducing the likelihood of a good external hire. Same with the searches for new library and education deans, and of course journalism. There was an obvious excuse for the president’s search, but the pattern is starting to look bad.

    • Anonymous 01/18/2014

      It’s also the case that we had the internal candidate “on campus” first, which was a dumb move. Our reputation for cronyism was already public, so seeing Coltrane’s “visit,” and his admin ass kissing in the senate (making him the obvious choice) would lessen my interest.

      UOM is on point here (again). People would do well to update their priors on just how much information exchanges in these markets and how quickly. This yields a savvy, of a sort, in the market’s analysis of this place. Gottfredson’s hire was not well received initially, seen as an odd choice. His freshman year largely affirmed the expectation, that he was (and is) in over his head. Whether he does anything big to save himself (e.g., put the athletic department back in its place, finally cut the UO free from Geller’s influence, from Frohnmayer’s, from HLGR’s) is the current chatter. Most think he doesn’t have it in him.

      So, Coltrane is destined to pool himself with Gottfredson’s shit-can reputation unless he separates from it in a meaningful way. One option, Scott? Once you have the offer in hand, negotiate not for yourself (UO’s offer will be plenty handsome already) but for faculty.

      • Anonymous 01/18/2014

        I put $5 on Gottfredson not even attaining “reliable wireless connectivity” during his tenure.

        • uomatters Post author | 01/18/2014

          Yeah, it seems Geller spent that money for wifi hardware on lawyers to restrict and monitor faculty internet use.

  18. uomatters Post author | 01/18/2014

    The rumor was that Bean drove a hard bargain with Frohnmayer before he agreed to take the interim provost job after Linda Brady fled. More faculty, raises, and fund-raising priority for the B-school. Plus of course the beamer for himself.

  19. dog 01/21/2014

    At this talk now — overall not too bad. Indeed somewhat encouraging

    • uomatters Post author | 01/21/2014

      Tell us more Dog – what’s “somewhat encouraging” in human terms?

      • dog 01/21/2014

        throughout her talk she sort of emphasized that throughout higher ed there is generally too much process and too little outcome and she takes steps to reverse that. At the UO, such reversal is badly needed, in my view.

        Others at the talk may disagree with this assessment, but that was my overall sense – this is what encouraging means.

        Secondarily she did seem to recognize that Research Universities need to evolve in light of changing funding patterns – something that the UO also needs to do, but I have posted on that too much before. I don’t believe my own opinion on this is very widely shared.

        She also had a reasonable but incomplete response to a question about how she deals with conflict.

        • ScienceDuck 01/22/2014

          Lack of process can seem unfair. On the other hand, I have had it hearing about how admins want to be “intentional” and “align” inputs and outputs and have outcomes that “articulate” without anything ever happening!

  20. Anon 01/29/2014

    Well that’s depressing news.

  21. Anonymous 01/30/2014

    Too bad. I liked her a lot. I went to her talk and spoke with her afterwards. Her philosophy and approach would have been welcome here in my view.

  22. Yea but who wins in a smackdown? 01/30/2014

    UOM can you do a comparison of the UO to CSU-LB (football style)? I wonder if our president would be able to get the job at CSU-LB? I mean they are not a member of the prestigious AAU but then neither is Nebraska and they rank better than Oregon on most AAU measures.

  23. Anonymous 01/30/2014

    Wow. Impressions of candidate #3? That statement is hard to read, no?

    Recall that a fourth candidate also withdrew from consideration. The administration has removed that information from their web page. So, in the end… the best we could gather was one no-show, one who dropped soon after visiting, a third contender with a letter that should leave us all embarrassed, and Scott.

    Oh yea, this is definitely legit. No question. Way to go, MG. You are awesome.

    Ok Scott. We’re looking for you to actually do something with this coronation.

  24. honest Uncle Bernie 01/30/2014

    Jorge Jose, yes, I knew him some time ago. A physicist with a good reputation. A real contender. I like Scott too. I hope they are both really in the running.

  25. He's got a sense of humor 01/30/2014

    From Jose’s statement: “I appreciate UO’s achievements in undergraduate and graduate education and its goals to reach higher levels of successes in its research and creative areas as well as in service to make it the outstanding institution in the state of Oregon, the US and the World.”

  26. dog 01/30/2014

    yes, this again does not look like a proper “national search”.
    Candidate 3, who I worked with a long time ago, is really on the end of his administrative career. Not the profile we want or need here.

    • AnonAnon 01/30/2014

      Obviously the committee didn’t get much of a pool. Not surprising, because no search firm is going to burn their top candidates if the fix is already in for an internal hire.

      I think Coltrane is a legitimate candidate. He didn’t do much as Dean, but it’s been a crazy time. It’s also possible he’s just too tired for this work.

      Perhaps Gottfredson should declare a failed search, give Coltrane until fall to prove himself as interim, and then decide either to make it permanent, or send him back to the faculty and then do a clean national search.

  27. Anonymous 01/30/2014

    Given the number of folks that dropped out I think declaring a failed search may be necessary.

    I do know from the search committee that many other candidates were interviewed off campus – we only see the finalists. It is not like these are the only ones that the committee looked at.

    The final candidate actually seems quite strong, though the “end of the academic career” could be worrisome. However, using UO only as a stepping stone to something “better” is perhaps more worrisome.

    • Anonymous 01/30/2014

      You’re joking I take it.

      • dog 01/30/2014

        you can not legitimately argue that this was a successful search given the ultimate fate of the finalists.

        Yes Coltrane will likely be chosen, but this will be done purely
        for the sake of expediency rather than consensus that results from a rigorous search and I believe this was the exact same criteria used to hire Bean – I guess we all must be happy with this process.

  28. uomatters Post author | 01/30/2014

    Scott Coltrane is an order of magnitude better than Jim Bean in every dimension. Bob Berdahl gave UO one last fuck you when he signed Bean to three year contract as provost, just before walking out the door. Nathan Tublitz then did us all a huge favor with that Senate motion. Yes, this search was a sham, but the outcome is good news for UO, and we need some good news. The committee should be congratulated for going through the motions as credibly as possible given the circumstances.

  29. Ferris 01/31/2014

    Thanks Uncle Bernie for constantly bragging about our retirement benefits, look at what its done to the pool of candidates :-)

    • honest Uncle Bernie 01/31/2014

      I don’t “brag” about our retirement benefits (even though they’re generally great), I simply point out facts about them and their part in the overall picture of faculty compensation.

      Modest toil, but necessary, it seems.

      The connection of our retirement benefits with the provost candidate pool escapes me. Perhaps you could explain.

      • uomatters Post author | 01/31/2014

        While I often disagree with Honest Uncle Bernie on interpretation, he is a valuable contributor to this blog because he disagrees with my posts, and bases his comments on facts. I would like to thank him with a UO Matters coffee mug, but Cafepress doesn’t deliver to his current address:,_Butner

        • Fishwrapper 01/31/2014

          I’d offer to receive the gift on his behalf, but I don’t know what he knows – or wants.

  30. Big Bean Beamer Burnisher 01/31/2014

    Here, HUB, let me try to help: “The connection of our retirement benefits with the provost candidate pool escapes me.” — I believe Ferris is referring to the “maturity” of the candidates. Presumably if you’re toward the end of your career, those are an important part of the package to you. UO offers attractive retirement benefits, thus we get older folks interested in these positions.

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