Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


FAU Presidential Search 2022-24

Stories related to the 2022-2023 FAU Presidential Search:

FAU Board of Trustees chair resigns, board names new chair – February 8, 2024

Headshot of Piero Bussani. Courtesy of FAU’s website.

FAU Board of Trustees (BOT) Chair Brad Levine resigned at the Board of Trustees meeting on Thursday. The BOT unanimously appointed Piero Bussani as the next chairman. Bussani was appointed to the board in 2022 by Gov. Ron DeSantis.

“The university is poised to select a permanent president, a search that has been arduous and now must commence anew,” Levine said. “Unfortunately, I have personally become a part of this narrative. The selection of an experienced and visionary leader deserves no such distractions.”

FAU Board of Trustees Chair Brad Levine under fire by the Board of Governors for his latest mishap – January 25, 2024

Board of Trustees Chair Brad Levine reacts to Governor Alan Levine’s concerns at Wednesday’s Board of Governors meeting. Courtesy of TheFloridaChannel.org.

The Board of Governors (BOG) debated Wednesday over the extension of FAU Interim President Stacy Volnick’s contract, but not because of Volnick – instead because there was never a contract to begin with. This discovery led to a no-confidence vote in Board of Trustees (BOT) Chair Brad Levine. 

Presidential search violated state law, BOG Inspector General recommends restart – December 14, 2023

FAU’s presidential search violated state law and failed to meet audit and compliance regulations, Florida Board of Governors (BOG) Inspector General Julie Leftheris reported of her investigation Thursday during an Audit and Compliance Committee meeting.

“Our review found areas in which the FAU presidential search was out of compliance with state law and [a] Board of Governors regulation related to the use of a preference candidate survey in May 2023,” Leftheris said.

FAU Board of Trustees extends Interim President Stacy Volnick’s contract – November 15, 2023

On Nov. 12, Levine delivered a performance evaluation letter to Volnick praising her and the university’s growth over the past year, noting how she supported public affairs staff in generating $1.7 billion as the men’s basketball team made its run to the Final Four. Levine wrote that the chair of the Board of Governors, university friends and community leaders commended and praised Volnick’s success “at the helm of FAU during some challenging times.”

He rated her work at the highest level — exceptional.

Attorney General: Presidential Search Committee violated Florida law – November 2, 2023

Headshot of Attorney General Ashley Moody. (Courtesy of Moody’s website)

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody determined on Oct. 30 that Florida Atlantic University’s use of a straw poll in its suspended presidential search violated Sunshine Law, spurring calls for the process to be restarted completely.

“This process is inconsistent with the Sunshine Law because it uses an evasive device to circumvent public deliberation,” wrote Moody, in a letter to the State University System of Florida General Counsel Rachel Kamoutsas. “In fact, it appears that the very purpose of the process you describe is to inject secrecy into the deliberative process.”

Faculty endorse Stacy Volnick as FAU’s next presidentSeptember 28, 2023

“I am asking this board to explore with the Board of Governors whether an adjustment could be made to the presidential selection process to allow us to consider extending a multi-year contract to Stacy Volnick to serve as our next president,” said Kimberly Dunn, the president of the Faculty Senate during the Sept. 26 meeting.

‘Proud to call Barbara my friend’: Experts say friendship between Rep. Randy Fine, Barbara Feingold complicates presidential search – September 15, 2023

Fine confirmed that he and Feingold, FAU Board of Trustees (BOT) vice chair and search committee member, are “close friends” via an August 27 email to the University Press.

“As State Chairs of the Republican Jewish Coalition, I met the Feingolds when I first entered politics in 2015 and over the years, we have become close friends,” he wrote.

Top: Governor Ron DeSantis, FAU Board of Trustees Chair Brad Levine. Bottom: State University System of Florida Chancellor Ray Rodrigues, Florida State Rep. Randy Fine.

‘Politics over process:’ The political side of FAU’s presidential search – September 1, 2023

“It is, I think, one of the worst jobs in higher education right now, to be a president of a public university in Florida given the political interference that we see. So the fact that they got three really viable candidates that have all you would want to see in a university president, that’s impressive,” said Michael Harris, associate professor of higher education at Southern Methodist University in Dallas.

Vice Chair Barbara Feingold chastises Chair Brad Levine at Board of Trustees meeting Tuesday – August 15, 2023

Barbara Feingold is the Vice Chair of the FAU Board of Trustees. Headshot courtesy of FAU Media Relations.

“I resent the fact that you’ve been talking for all of us, which you shouldn’t because of the NDA, and I resent the fact that today you’re talking for me out of turn. I’m meaning that that’s not supposed to be out there for public information yet. That’s why the Board of Governors got involved, and that’s why the inspector general is involved. Because there were not only anomalies, there were ethics violations and a lot of irregularities. You may be painting a certain picture, but it’s not an accurate and true picture. And I resent that,” said Feingold.

Connecting the dots: Breaking down FAU’s suspended presidential searchJuly 26, 2023

Tyler Branson, an English professor at the University of Cincinnati, has served on multiple academic search committees. He feels that leadership teams involved in the search should provide the community with regular updates.

“It’s a fine line between being able to discuss an ongoing search and then providing the campus community updates and transparency about what’s going on,” he said. “And I think you can do both of those, right? You can maintain confidentiality and follow the law, but you can also be transparent and open and honest with the community and I think that’s what a good leadership team should be able to do effectively.”

Official headshot of Dick Schmidt. Courtesy of the Sun Sentinel. (Downtown Photo)

OPINION: FAU presidential search panelist: Our work has been ‘slandered’ – July 14, 2023

“The intersection of politics and academia is at the same time both fragile and dangerous. This has never been more clear than this past week, when it appears that political influence may have pressured the State University System Board of Governors to halt the search process for the next president of Florida Atlantic University.”

Dick Schmidt, Guest Columnist

FAU Board of Trustees suspends presidential search – July 7, 2023

“Following a written request from the Chancellor of the Florida State University System Board of Governors, FAU Board of Trustees Chair Brad Levine has agreed to suspend the university’s presidential search until further notice,” FAU’s statement read.

Board agrees to suspend presidential search, cancels candidate forums – July 6, 2023

Vice Admiral Sean Buck (top left), Michael Hartline (top right), Jose Sartarelli (bottom). Photos courtesy of US Naval Academy, Florida State University College of Business, and the Wilmington Business Journal.

Scheduled for July 10, 12, and 13, the meetings would have showcased the three presidential candidates and their visions before they interviewed with the Board of Trustees, the governing board of the university.

FAU announces candidates for president – July 5, 2023

 “This applicant pool is one of the strongest we have ever seen,” Rod McDavis, managing principal of AGB Search, said in a statement, “It is the result of the committee’s hard work, dedication to the process, and adherence to the highest standards for the conduct of the search. AGB Search is proud to have assisted FAU in assembling such an exceptional pool.”

Board of Trustees to determine finalists for FAU’s next president by early JulyJune 22, 2023

“I think FAU is gonna emerge with an exceptional president once this process is done,” said Board of Governors member Alan Levine.

New presidential search listening sessions – March 31, 2023

All FAU students, faculty, staff, and alumni are welcome to attend the listening sessions and share their thoughts on the desired qualifications and characteristics of the next FAU president.

Rep. Randy Fine. Source of Republican House Majority.

Florida Rep. Randy Fine could be FAU’s next president – March 31, 2023

Gov. Ron DeSantis approached Republican Florida House of Representative Randy Fine and encouraged him to apply to be the next president of Florida Atlantic University, FAU Associate Vice President of Media Relations and Public Affairs Joshua Glanzer wrote in a statement.

Q&A with Interim President Stacy VolnickJan. 17, 2023

Stacy Volnick, FAU’s interim president. (Courtesy of FAU)

UP: Will you be involved in the search for the next FAU President?

SV: Yes, I’m the liaison to our [BOT]. I work very closely with them in my current role as the chief operating officer so I expect that to continue.

Board of Trustees: Stacy Volnick to serve as interim president starting in 2023Sept. 20, 2022

“Volnick was an obvious choice for a smooth and seamless transition during the presidential search,” Chairman Brad Levine wrote in an email announcement to the FAU community Tuesday morning.

President John Kelly to step down at the end of the calendar year – June 20, 2022

FAU President John Kelly smiles during a Florida Board of Governors meeting on November 4, 2021. (Eston Parker III)

“My new role as University President Emeritus will afford me the time and flexibility to complete certain projects that are important to me personally, and are important to the Board of Trustees, also,” wrote Kelly.