Nevada board hires firm to search for new CSN president

The Nevada System of Higher Education has hired a firm to find a new leader for the College of Southern Nevada.

Wheless Partners stood out in a pool of nine proposals, NSHE Chancellor Thom Reilly said, because of its commitment to fielding a diverse pool of applicants and to conducting an active search.

Scott Watson, chief corporate officer and managing partner of Wheless Partners, said the firm does not work from a database of potential candidates and views the search as a “fresh start.”

The Board of Regents’ search committee on Tuesday directed Reilly, in consultation with Wheless Partners, to select two to five finalists to be interviewed by the committee. Reilly has said he hopes to have a replacement for former President Michael Richards, who retired Jan. 31, by August.

Also Tuesday, the committee asked advisory members to give their input for a leadership profile. Several advisory members said diversity is important.

“We are not trying to catch the nation’s trend,” said Alok Pandey, a faculty member at CSN. “We want to do this so our students, faculty and staff know and feel that they are valued.”

Pandey and others also suggested the profile require a doctorate or terminal degree. Amy Hutchinson, an adjunct faculty member, said the candidate should have teaching experience.

The NSHE contract with Wheless Partners has a $75,000 flat fee, plus expenses that include plane travel, lodging and advertising, according to the Board of Regents.

Contact Natalie Bruzda at or 702-477-3897. Follow @NatalieBruzda on Twitter.

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