UT System Board of Regents Names Presidential Search Advisory Committee for Stephen F. Austin State University

AUSTIN, TX – The University of Texas (UT) System Board of Regents Chairman Kevin P. Eltife today announced the appointment of search advisory committee members who will advise the regents on selecting the next president of Stephen F. Austin State University (SFA).

The UT System recently assumed operational oversight of SFA as part of the institution’s transition from an independent university to membership in the UT System. The Nacogdoches-based university will officially become the UT System’s 14th institution in September 2023. Gina Oglesbee, SFA Vice President for Finance & Administration, will continue to serve as the university’s interim president during the search.

Search advisory committee members were appointed in accordance with Board of Regents’ Rules and Regulations, which include a provision for representation by various constituencies that are both internal and external to the institution. This includes faculty, administration, alumni, students and community members. UT System Chancellor James B. Milliken will chair the committee.

“We are excited that Stephen F. Austin State University chose to become part of the UT System, and we are very pleased with the strong collaborative efforts currently underway with SFA’s regents, faculty and staff to ensure a smooth transition,” Eltife said. “As SFA ramps up to celebrate its 100th anniversary this fall, we are eager to find the right candidate to lead this historic university into its second century of excellence, and now as a UT institution.”

Milliken added, “I am enthusiastic about the future of SFA, and look forward to working with an excellent committee comprised of individuals with a deep affection for, and longstanding relationship, with SFA.  Their insight will be invaluable during the search.  Our goal is to bring the Board of Regents a slate of outstanding presidential candidates who will lead SFA through many new opportunities as a UT System institution.”

The UT System will soon launch a dedicated website to provide public information regarding the search, including a regularly updated timeline of search activities, and will provide opportunity for members of the public to privately submit candidate nominations. 

Representation on the SFA Presidential Search Advisory Committee includes:

Committee Chair:

•    James B. Milliken, UT System Chancellor

UT System Board of Regents

•    Christina Melton Crain, Esq., Regent, Dallas
•    Nolan Perez, M.D., Regent, Harlingen
•    Stuart W. Stedman, Regent, Houston

UT System

•    Archie Holmes, Ph.D., Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs

UT Institution Presidents

•    Taylor Eighmy, Ph.D., UT San Antonio
•    Guy Bailey, Ph.D., UT Rio Grande Valley

SFA Faculty and Staff

•    Gary Wurtz, DMA, Dean, Mickey Elliott College of Fine Arts
•    Jeremy Stovall, Ph.D., C.F., Bone Hill Distinguished Professor of Silviculture
•    Christopher McKenna, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Business Communication and Legal Studies
•    Michelle Klein, BBA, MSN, RN, Clinical Instructor, Richard and Lucille DeWitt School of Nursing
•    Grace Saldana-Romero, BBA, MAIS, Assistant Director, Business Operations/Member Services, Campus Recreation

SFA Student and Alumnus

•    Jada Cartwright, Student Body President
•    Erika Tolar, BBA, MBA, Alumni Association President

External Community Members

•    Karen Gantt, Partner, McCraw Gantt, PLLC
•    David Alders, President, Carrizo Creek Corporation
•    Ron Collins, Nacogdoches Market President, Cadence Bank
•    Jimmy Mize, Executive Vice President, Market President Commercial Bank of Texas, N.A.

About Stephen F. Austin State University

Stephen F. Austin State University is a comprehensive, regional institution located in Nacogdoches, Texas. The university enrolls approximately 11,000 students, offering more than 80 undergraduate majors spanning 120 areas of study within six academic colleges – business, education, fine arts, forestry and agriculture, liberal and applied arts, and sciences and mathematics. Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, SFA provides the academic breadth of a state university with the personalized attention of a private school. Learn more at sfasu.edu.

About The University of Texas System

For nearly 140 years, The University of Texas System has improved the lives of Texans and people all over the world through education, research and health care. With 13 institutions that enroll more than 243,000 students collectively, the UT System is one of the largest public university systems in the United States. UT institutions produce more than 64,000 graduates annually and award more than one-third of undergraduate degrees in Texas and more than 60% of the state’s medical degrees. Collectively, UT-owned and affiliated hospitals and clinics account for more than 10 million outpatient visits and more than 2 million hospital days each year. UT institutions are among the most innovative in the world, ranking No. 1 in Texas and No. 2 in the nation for federal research expenditures. The UT System also is one of the largest employers in Texas – employing more than 116,000 faculty, health care professionals, support staff and student workers – and has an operating budget of $25.2 billion for fiscal year 2023.

News Contact Information

Catherine Frazier: cfrazier@utsystem.edu • 512-499-4360 (direct)