Search for president heats up

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By Jordan Press

The new year just started, but the reign of Ryerson President Claude Lajeunesse is soon coming to an end and rumours are circulating about who will take his job.

While no applications have come in, there are three people rumoured as potential candidates interested in the job.

Former vice president academic Dennis Mock is one name that has been mentioned. His qualifications include 28 years of work at Ryerson. He has built good relations with the faculty, which helps make him a strong candidate, if he applies.

Another name that’s been dropped is the current CEO of the National Arts Centre in Ottawa, Peter Herndorff. His management background includes being a former vice president at the Canadian Broadcast Corporation, and publisher of Toronto Life magazine.

The last name on the rumour mill is current Trent University President Bonnie Patterson. The former dean of Ryerson’s faculty of business and the first woman to be appointed a dean in Ontario, Patterson has been the president at Trent since 1998.

However, he candidacy is in question since Trent extended her contract until 2009. To come to Ryerson she would have to resign as president, which is what former Ryerson president Brian Segal did in 1988 to take the president’s job at the University of Guelph.

Lajeunesse finishes his second term as president on July 31, 2005, the end of the next academic school year. presidents can only sit for two five-year terms.

According to Ryerson by-laws a search committee must be formed a year and a half before the end of the president’s term.

In preparation, Board of Governors chair Michael Guerriere sent out a letter in December saying he hoped all 13 members of the committee would be appointed early this year.

The committee will be made up of a chair and a vice chair, along with 11 voting members — seven from the board of governors and four from the academic council. Within the committee there must be one representative each for staff, alumni, faculty and students.

Current RyeSAC President Ken Marciniec thinks students should have a larger presence on the committee.

“I think there should be more than one student on that committee,” he said. “The bare minimum is one student. So they might convene the committee with one student. That would be a bit problematic and I think it would be irresponsible of both [Lajeunesse] and [Guerriere] to do that.”

In past presidential searches other big names have been mentioned for the job. In 1988, former “tiny perfect mayor” David Crombie was mentioned for the job, but that was just a rumour.

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