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Jackson fifth, final candidate for FHSU presidency

4/9/2014

By DIANE GASPER-O’BRIEN

dobrien@dailynews.net

The fifth and final candidate for the presidency at Fort Hays State University has ties to the same university from which the current president served before coming to Hays in the late 1980s.

Tom Jackson Jr. will greet the public at a 4:30 p.m. reception Thursday in Robbins Center on the FHSU campus.

Jackson is vice president for student affairs at University of Louisville. Ed Hammond, current FHSU president, had that same office at Louisville when he was chosen to lead Fort Hays in 1987. The longest tenured president in FHSU history, having served for 27 years, Hammond last semester announced his retirement — effective this summer.

Jackson will tour the FHSU campus Thursday and Friday to check out the university and the city of Hays. Following Thursday’s reception, Jackson will speak at a news conference at 9:30 a.m. Friday in Dreiling Lobby of Sheridan Hall.

He is the last candidate of the group of five selected by the search committee to come to campus.

Jackson, a native of Seattle, earned his bachelor’s degree from Southwest State University in Marshall, Minn.; his master’s from Shippenburg University in Pennsylvania; and his doctorate from the University of La Verne in California.

Jackson has served in the U.S. Coast Guard Reserve, the Texas Army National Guard and the Texas State Guard.

The search committee will submit its candidate recommendations to the Kansas Board of Regents at the conclusion of Jackson’s campus visit. The board anticipates naming the new president sometime during the week of April 28.

The next president will be only the ninth in the 112-year history of Fort Hays. The new president will take over his or her duties July 1.

The first four presidential finalists were Tisa Mason, current vice president for student affairs at Fort Hays; Mirta Martin, dean of the School of Business at Virginia State University in Petersburg; and Gregory Mosier, dean of the business school at the University of Nevada-Reno. Michael Droge finished us his two-day visit in Hays earlier this week. He is president of Park University, a private college, in Parkville, Mo.