Dr. Barnett announcement

Presidential search committee announced at William Woods University

For the first time in more than 30 years, William Woods University (WWU) is about to begin a nationwide search for a new president. Today, the university named the members of a presidential search committee, following the announcement by current President Dr. Jahnae H. Barnett earlier this week of her intention to step down as president at the end of the year.

The 12th president in WWU’s 151-year history, Dr. Barnett announced on March 2 that she will be concluding her 30-plus year tenure at the helm of the institution on December 31, 2021. The search for her successor will begin immediately, led by the following committee:

  • Romaine Seguin, ’82, chair of the WWU Board of Trustees, serving as committee chair;
  • Dale LaRue, the longest serving current member of the WWU Board of Trustees;
  • Vicki Wilkerson, ’77, member of the WWU Board of Trustees;
  • Bryan Tramont, member of the WWU Board of Trustees;
  • Kenda Shindler, Executive Assistant to the President and WWU cabinet member;
  • Elizabeth Wilson, Professor of Social Work, WWU;
  • Joe Davis, ’09 and ’13, Instructor of Education, WWU;
  • Sarah Wisdom, ’04, ’12 and ’16, Superintendent of Schools, New Bloomfield (Mo.)
  • Veronica Townsend, current WWU student;
  • Charlie Schattgen, current WWU graduate student

“Our goal as a search committee will be to look for a visionary individual who will take Dr. Barnett’s legacy baton and pave the way for William Woods University to continue to lead the way for higher education,” said committee chair Romaine Seguin.

Responsibilities of the next WWU president include increasing public recognition of WWU as an important contributor to the greater higher education community, the state of Missouri, and City of Fulton; leading successful fundraising efforts and securing relationships with donors, alumni, and community leaders; supporting admission efforts to successfully build enrollment in campus, graduate and online programs; promoting a diverse and inclusive environment for all university constituents; maintaining a strong working relationship with the WWU Board of Trustees; continuing to engage in student life to help create and maintain a vibrant university community; preparing budgets and plans that reflect current realities; partnering with faculty and staff to promote development of new traditional, graduate and online programs; and encouraging creative solutions and flexibility in responding to university needs.

For potential applicants interested in the position, or to learn more about the search process at William Woods, please visit the dedicated presidential search profile on the WWU website at https://www.williamwoods.edu/presidential-search.html.