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Committee to Recommend a President

November 2016

The Committee to Recommend a President (the Committee) is established by the Executive Committee of the Board of Governors of the university effective October 26, 2016, on the authority provided to it by Section 9(1)(d) of the University of Ontario Institute of Technology Act.

Composition of the Committee to Recommend a President

The members of the Committee will be nominated and selected to bring to the Committee the perspectives of the different constituencies within the UOIT community. As such, the composition will be as follows:

Voting members:

Members Chair of the Board of Governors (Committee Chair)
  6 external governors
  3 tenured, tenure-track, or teaching faculty members
  1 staff member
  1 graduate student
  1 undergraduate student

Committee support (non-voting):

  University Secretary and General Counsel
  Vice-President, External Relations and Advancement
  Director, Human Resources
  Assistant University Secretary

The Chancellor will be consulted at key steps in the process. The Board reserves the option to add members to ensure diverse perspectives are included.  The Board will normally select governors whose term of service expires after the anticipated completion of the Committee mandate.  Where the Board deems it appropriate, however, the Board reserves the right to permit a governor whose term as governor expires before completion of the Committee mandate to continue to serve on the Committee on behalf of the Board and on such terms and conditions as the Board may determine.

Selection of the Committee

  • The Executive Committee will appoint 6 external governors.
  • Academic Council will nominate 3 tenured, tenure-track or teaching faculty members from at least three different faculties and selected from all tenured, tenure-track and teaching faculty through an expression of interest process.
  • The Executive Committee will appoint one staff member based upon expressions of interest from staff members.
  • The Executive Committee will appoint one graduate student based upon expressions of interest from graduate students.
  • The Executive Committee will appoint one undergraduate student based upon expressions of interest from undergraduate students.

Expressions of interest

All expressions of interest must address the following in 200 words or less:

  • the applicant’s ability to commit the necessary time to regularly and consistently attend the Committee meetings and perform work as required between meetings;
  • the applicant’s reason for applying; and
  • the applicant’s ability to bring the perspective of the community stakeholder group represented by the applicant.

Mandate of the Committee to Recommend a President

The Committee is charged with the responsibility of bringing forward to the Board a recommendation for the appointment of an individual to be the President of the university commencing July 1, 2017. The Committee’s work will consist of:

  • Selecting and appointing an Executive Search firm to assist the Committee in its work
  • Consulting with university stakeholders for input about:
    • the university’s current and future needs and challenges
    • desired leadership priorities, characteristics, and qualifications of the next President
  • Developing a candidate profile that articulates the attributes of a President best able to lead the university in fulfilling its vision, mission and values and in meeting its objectives
  • Assessing and interviewing potential candidates
  • Making a final recommendation to the Board of Governors

The members of the Committee will be nominated and selected to bring to the Committee the perspectives of the different constituencies within the UOIT community. Committee members have been entrusted individually and collectively to contribute a broad range of experience, skills and understandings which in their combination will enable the best outcome.

The overarching consideration for the recommendation of a presidential candidate to assume the role of President and Vice-Chancellor will be based on what is in the best interests of the university as a whole.


Drawing from the experience of UOIT and other universities conducting presidential searches, a number of points should be commonly understood.

Application of  Vision, Mission, Values and Strategic Plan

The vision, mission and values for the university need to be reflected in all of the Committee’s deliberations.  It is also important to consider the UOIT refreshed strategic plan. Download the plan hererefreshed strategic plan


Confidentiality is mandatory. If potential candidates have any reason to believe that confidentiality of their application might not be kept, they may be inhibited from applying. It is in the Committee’s interests that all prospective applicants be considered. Additionally, Committee members must be able to express themselves in the Committee’s deliberations without concern that their specific views will be repeated outside the Committee room. The simplest general rule is that if there is any doubt at any time about what is permissible to relate outside Committee, members must speak with the Chair before acting.

All Search Committee members will be asked to sign this confidentiality agreement.

Communication to the university community

The Offices of the University Secretariat, General Counsel, Human Resources and Communications & Marketing are all supporting the work of the Committee. It is the job of this group to keep the university community apprised of the Committee’s progress and of any opportunities for the community to have input into the process.

The Chair of the Committee will be the official and only spokesperson for the Committee in its communications. If a Committee member has a communications suggestion or concern, this should be raised with the Chair of the Committee.

Use of a search firm and reference checking

The Committee will select and appoint an executive search firm to assist it in many aspects of the search process. Reference checking and other due diligence functions will be performed by the search firm or, if otherwise agreed, through specific assignment. Members of the Committee should not do informal reference checking, even if they have the network of colleagues and acquaintances. If the member feels that they have a contact that would be valuable in this regard they should inform the Committee so that references can be checked systematically and professionally.

Value-added constructive contributions

Members will be expected to add value to the Search Committee deliberations through constructive contributions and clarification, while taking care not to exert undue influence and/or dominate the Committee’s proceedings.

Early declaration of personal biases and assumptions

It is quite normal that as candidates’ names are put forth, members might have their own personal biases and/or information based on their personal knowledge of some of the candidates. Early acknowledgement and declaration of any personal bias or knowledge to the Committee is encouraged. Knowledge of a candidate is not in itself a conflict of interest. If a Committee member is linked to a candidate in such a way that they feel they may have a conflict of interest, the potential should be raised with the Chair.

Full engagement by each member at all stages

The success of selection committees depends a great deal on the degree to which individual members are engaged in each stage of the process. Committee members are expected to attend all meetings of the Committee unless their absence is unavoidable. Full attendance will mean that Committee members are fully conversant with the Committee’s process and decisions. Most importantly, full attendance will ensure that Committee members know the candidates equally when making a decision about a candidate to ultimately recommend.

Focus on position specifications and candidate profile

The Committee will be establishing a role description for President and a profile of the characteristics of the perfect candidate. Candidates will bring with them a variety of individual strengths and qualifications that are not called for in the role or profile descriptions. It will be important that the Committee focus on their pre-established criteria when making a selection.

After the search

The Committee’s responsibilities will not end once the President is appointed. Confidentiality obligations continue indefinitely. Further, Members of the Search Committee – collectively and individually – will play a vital role in ensuring the success of the new President by providing direct and indirect support once he/she assumes office. In a sense, members of the Committee will be ambassadors for the appointment both within the university community and beyond.