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Regents announce finalists for NMSU presidency

The New Mexico State University Board of Regents today (Friday, April 7) announced five finalists for the position of NMSU president. The finalists, recommended to the Board of Regents by a 12-member search committee, are:


--Rodolfo Arevalo, provost at the University of Texas-Pan American in Edinburgh, Texas.
--Jill Beck, dean of the School of Arts at the University of California-Irvine.
--John Burns, provost at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas.
--Eugene Garcia, dean of the Graduate School of Education at the University of California at Berkeley.
--Jay Gogue, provost at Utah State University in Logan, Utah.

Campus interviews with the candidates are expected to be scheduled for late April and early May. President William B. Conroy's term ends June 30.

"The search committee is confident that any one of these candidates would make an outstanding president," search committee member Jim Hageman, an NMSU professor of chemistry, said in reporting the committee's recommendations to the Board of Regents.

NMSU Dean of Engineering Jay Jordan, another committee member, agreed and added that the board would face a difficult choice because "each one of these individuals brings something unique to the table."

Search committee members said the selection of the five finalists, out of about 40 candidates for the position, was unanimous.

Arevalo has been provost and vice president for academic affairs at UT-Pan American since June 1998. He previously was provost and chief academic officer at Fort Hays State University in Hays, Kansas.

Arevalo received a doctorate in educational administration and a master's in social work administration at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and a bachelor's in accounting from Texas-Pan American.

Beck has been dean of arts at UC-Irvine since 1995. She also is director of the State ArtsBridge program, coordinating partnerships between school districts and all eight of the University of California campuses. She previously chaired the dance division at Southern Methodist University.

Beck has a doctorate in theater history and criticism and a master's in theater history from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York and a bachelor's in philosophy and art history from Clark University.

Burns was vice provost at Texas Tech before becoming interim provost in 1996 and provost in 1997. He previously chaired the university's department of biological sciences and served as interim associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.

Burns received his doctorate in zoology and endocrinology at Indiana University, his master's in biology and microbiology at New Mexico State University, and his bachelor's in education and chemistry at NMSU. He was an endocrinology research fellow at the Mayo Medical School in Rochester, Minn., in 1976-77.

Garcia has been a professor of education and dean of the Graduate School of Education at UC-Berkeley since 1995. From 1993-95 he was senior officer and director of the Office of Bilingual Education and Minority Languages Affairs at the U.S. Department of Education in Washington, D.C.

Garcia has a doctorate in human development from the University of Kansas. He did post-doctoral work in psycholinguistics at Harvard University.

Gogue has been provost at Utah State since 1995. He was vice president for research at Clemson University in South Carolina from 1988 to 1995, and also served as vice president and vice provost for agriculture and natural resources at Clemson.

Gogue received a doctorate in horticulture from Michigan State University and bachelor's and master's degrees in horticulture from Auburn University.

Karl Hill
April 7, 2000