Marshall’s President Search Narrowed Down to Five

The Board of Governors announced the five candidates who could potentially be Marshall’s next president. The board plans to announce the school’s next president on October 28th. 

The five candidates for president are Bernard Arulanandam, Bret Danilowicz, Robyn Hannigan, Kathy Johnson, and Brad D. Smith; revealed by the Marshall Presidential Search Committee on sept. 30., in a livestream announcement. 

All candidates will be available for public interview on the Huntington Campus throughout the month of October: 

Dr. Robyn Hannigan, Oct. 11-12 

Mr. Brad Smith, Oct. 12-13 

Dr. Kathy Johnson, Oct. 13-14 

Dr. Bernard Arulanandam, Oct. 14-15 

Dr. Bret Danilowicz, Oct .18-19. 

During the livestream, the committee shared a list of attributes they were to consider regarding all who have applied for the position. Highlighting the candidate’s ability to act as a spokesperson for the school, the capability to manage the university’s resources and to be able to preserve and respect Marshall’s history among other things. 

Brad D. Smith, a West Virginia native and son of Marshall appeared on the list of candidates. Smith is the co-founder of the Wing 2 Wing foundation, a program that plans to evolve the accessibility of education in the Appalachian area via charities. Brad Smith along with his wife have together donated over $35 million to Marshall University, leading the university’s new school of business to be named after him. 

Bernard Arulanandam is another of the five candidates, Arulanandam has served as the Vice President for research, economic development, and knowledge enterprise at the University of Texas at San Antonio’s department of Biology: specializing in cellular immunology and microbial pathogenesis. 

Bret Danilowicz appears on the list in addition to the other candidates, Bret has served as the Florida Atlantic University’s Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs since July 2018. 

Robyn Hannigan has served as the Provost at Clarkson University since Aug. 2019, while having previously served as founding Dean of the school for the environment at the University of Massachusetts. 

Kathy Johnson wraps up the candidate list, having served as executive Vice Chancellor and Chief Academic Officer at the Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. 

Patrick Farrell, Chairman of the school’s board of governors and member of the Presidential Search Committee discussed the process of finding the school’s next president. 

“It was overwhelming, the amount of applications,” Farrell said. “Hours and hours and days and days searching.”  

During the livestream the Presidential search committee presented the search’s  

timeline of events starting in June 2021, featuring prominent events regarding the search. 

Information regarding the search was released as the livestream concluded via the University Communications Announcement Email.  

Conner Woodruff, [email protected].