SIU Carbondale has its new presumptive chancellor.
The SIU Board of Trustees will meet Friday to consider the appointment of Austin A. Lane as the next chancellor of the Carbondale campus.
The appointment, recommended by System President Dan Mahony, will be effective no later than July 6, pending the board's approval.
Lane was president of Texas Southern University from 2016 to to his contentious departure in February 2020.
Mahony said Lane's leadership experience and collaborative approach will be an asset in his new role.
"Dr. Lane is also very student-focused, and he is highly respected by his former faculty, staff and students," Mahony said. "I am a strong believer in getting feedback from a lot of people who have worked closely with candidates for senior-level positions. We talked with many people from Dr. Lane's previous institutions and took great care to do our due diligence as we vetted his candidacy. Based upon our review and the feedback we received from the SIU community, I am confident that he is an individual of strong character who will be an outstanding chancellor."
Lane said he was impressed by the dedication of the university's faculty, staff and students he met during his two-day interview, which was conducted virtually.
"I would like to send a heartfelt thank you to the search committee and all the dedicated SIU Carbondale employees who participated in the search process amid these unprecedented times," he said. "During my virtual interview and conversations with various constituency groups, I was immediately convinced that SIU is a stunning first-class institution of higher learning with amazing students and a family of highly regarded faculty, staff, alums and community members who believe in the spirit of Saluki pride.
"I was also impressed with the leadership and energy of President Mahony and his ideas for the future of the system as well as the support he is receiving from the Board of Trustees," he added.
Prior to his presidency at Texas Southern, Lane was executive vice chancellor for academic and student affairs for the 90,000-student Lone Star College System in Texas in 2015 and 2016. He served as president of Lone Star College-Montgomery from 2009 to 2015 and executive vice president for student affairs for Tyler Junior College in Texas from 2005 to 2009. He worked at the University of Texas at Arlington from 1995 to 2005 as a counselor, assistant dean of students and director of judicial affairs and dean of students.
Lane holds a bachelor's degree in psychology from Langston University in Oklahoma, a master's degree in human relations from the University of Oklahoma, and a doctor of education degree in higher education administration from the University of Alabama.
His recommendation as chancellor follows a national search overseen by a screening committee that included representatives of multiple campus groups as well as community members. The committee vetted 26 nominees and applicants for the position, interviewing nine individuals before identifying finalists for virtual interviews.
The new chancellor will replace John M. Dunn, who has served as interim chancellor since January 2019 following the death of previous chancellor Carlo Montemagno.
"I am deeply grateful that Dr. Dunn returned to lead SIU Carbondale when the university needed him most," Mahony said. "He has provided calm, exceptional leadership during some of the university's most challenging times."