Executive vice chancellor, IANR finalists to visit

· 5 min read

Executive vice chancellor, IANR finalists to visit

Two sets of finalists for a pair of senior vice chancellor positions will visit the University of Nebraska-Lincoln this week.

Ron Yoder and Gary Thompson, finalists for Harlan Vice Chancellor of the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources and vice president for agriculture for the university system, will hold public and faculty forums on Oct. 3-4 and Oct. 5-6, respectively. Yoder and Thompson are the third and fourth of four IANR finalists to visit campus.

Sheryl Tucker and Elizabeth Spiller, finalists for the position of executive vice chancellor, will hold faculty and public forums on Oct. 3-4 and Oct 5-6, respectively. Tucker and Spiller are the first and second of four executive vice chancellor finalists to visit campus.

Four finalists were named for each position earlier this month. Details on this week’s visiting finalists and their sessions:

Ron Yoder, interim vice chancellor for the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources at Nebraska; live-streamed state and campus town hall, 3 p.m. Oct. 3 in the East Union Great Plains Room; faculty forum, 2:30 p.m. Oct. 4 in Room 113 of McCollum Hall. From 2011-2016, Yoder was associate vice chancellor of IANR, serving as the chief operating officer with oversight of its three mission areas and responsibility for day-to-day operations. Previously he led the Biological Systems Engineering Department at Nebraska and the Biosystems Engineering and Soil Science Department at the University of Tennessee.

Yoder has been president of the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers and is a fellow of that society and of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering. He is also a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers, Alpha Epsilon, Gamma Sigma Delta and Sigma Xi. His research and educational interests have been in agricultural water management, measurement and estimation of evapotranspiration, water and solute movement in the vadose zone and land use impacts on water quality. He has held positions at the University of Wyoming, the USDA ARS in Colorado and in Washington state, and at Tennessee. Yoder is a licensed professional engineer in Nebraska and Wyoming.

Gary Thompson, associate dean for Research and Graduate Education and director of the Pennsylvania Agricultural Experiment Station at Pennsylvania State University; live-streamed state and campus town hall, 3 p.m. Oct. 6, East Union Great Plains Room; faculty forum, 2:30 p.m. Oct. 7, East Union Great Plains Room. Thompson works with students, faculty, staff, university administrators, alumni and stakeholders, and is involved in organizations that provide regional, national and international leadership for land-grant institutions.

A professor of plant science, Thompson’s research focuses on the molecular biology of plant vascular systems and the genomics of plant responses to phloem-feeding insects. Thompson is a fellow in the APLU-sponsored Food Systems Leadership Institute.

Before joining Penn State, Thompson led the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Oklahoma State University and was the program director for plant-biotic interactions in the Directorate for Biological Sciences at the National Science Foundation. He held consecutive summer appointments as visiting research professor in the Department of Plant Biology at University of Copenhagen, was an associate professor and professor with appointments at the Little Rock campus and with the Division of Agriculture at the University of Arkansas, and was associate professor in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at the University of Arizona. He received his bachelor from Nebraska in 1979.

For more information on the IANR vice chancellor search, click here.

Executive vice chancellor finalists – all sessions are in the Nebraska Union auditorium

Sheryl Tucker, associate provost and dean of the Oklahoma State University Graduate College; faculty forum 3 p.m. Oct. 3; live-streamed public presentation 1:30 p.m. Oct. 4. In 2014-15, Tucker was interim vice president for research and technology transfer at OSU. Before joining Oklahoma State, she was a program director for the Graduate Research Fellowship Program at the National Science Foundation. She started her career at the University of Missouri as a professor of chemistry and associate dean for academic affairs in the graduate school.

As a molecular spectroscopist with an interest in chemical separations, she has published more than 100 peer-reviewed manuscripts in journals, such as Science and Analytical Chemistry. She has earned funding from federal and foundation sources such as the National Science Foundation, NASA and Research Corp. Nearly 50 undergraduate and graduate students have been involved in her research program, leading to numerous advanced degrees.

Tucker has worked to broaden the participation of underrepresented groups in science. The White House awarded her a presidential award for excellence in science, mathematics and engineering mentoring.

Elizabeth Spiller, dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences at Virginia Tech; faculty forum 3 pm. Oct. 5; live-streamed public presentation 1:30 p.m. Oct. 6. Spiller oversees a dozen academic departments, a school of performing arts, a graduate school of education and three ROTC programs. program strengths across the arts, humanities, human and social sciences, and education. Spiller has focused on developing and expanding the college’s curricular offerings, including new majors and degree programs in criminology, multimedia journalism, national security, security governance and sports media and analytics. She has also been engaged in broadening diversity and inclusion initiatives.

Before joining Virginia Tech, Spiller was associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Florida State University. She worked with programs in the humanities and the mathematical sciences and provided administrative support for online learning, academic-side budget support and the core curriculum revision. She also was director of the History of Text Technologies Program and associate chair of the Department of English.

A Renaissance scholar with expertise in the history of science and in critical race studies, Spiller is the author of two books. She has also edited two collections and published articles and book chapters on early modern literature and culture. Spiller has held major fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Fulbright Foundation.

To learn more on the search for the executive vice chancellor, click here.

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