News: There’s room at the top

Published in the August 26 2010 issue of The NAIT Nugget. News

There’s room at the top

Issues Editor

The search for NAIT’s new president and CEO is on after current president Dr. Sam Shaw announced his retirement in July.

“The search has begun and it will be a long and thorough search before we have the right person,” said Doug Goss, chairman for NAIT’s Board of Governors.

In an internal letter sent on July 12, Shaw said he would be leaving his position after 13 years – and 35 years working in post-secondary education – though he gave no reason for the retirement.

“I have asked Mr. Doug Goss, chair of the Board of Governors, to commence a national search for candidates for the position of president and CEO,” Shaw wrote.

Goss said the search for Shaw’s replacement is an international one – and potential leaders for the institution could come from across the globe.

“It’s really an international search to find the right person,” Goss said. “We think this process will take two to three months and we’re well into it.”

But Goss admits a replacement for Shaw won’t likely happen anytime soon.

“We’re nowhere close to deciding who (the replacement) is,” he said.

In his letter, Shaw highlighted his achievements as president of the institution, including re-positioning NAIT’s brand in the marketplace with a new logo and crest, establishing major applied research and innovation initiatives and launching two baccalaureate programs.

“NAIT has evolved into one of Canada’s leading technical institutes,” wrote Shaw.

NAITSA president Timothy Jobs says that Shaw has been “a pleasure to work with.”

“I wish him the best in his future endeavours,” Jobs said.

For now Shaw will remain as president until a replacement has been announced and Goss said the transition period shouldn’t negatively impact students.

“Sam’s committed to being here until we find a successor,” Goss said.

“(And) we’re absolutely going to find the best person possible to take NAIT to the next level.”

Shaw’s retirement comes after NAIT administration’s controversial proposal in April to suspend 13 programs in order to save the institution $2.8 million.

The administration had proposed the cuts as part of a plan to try and balance a $12.3-million budget shortfall.

Shaw was unavailable for comment about his retirement.

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