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The Daily Tar Heel

Search Begins for Social Work Dean

The search committee was formed after Richard Edwards' decision to resign from the position of dean in January.

Chaired by Linda Cronenwett, dean of the School of Nursing, the committee consists of members of the faculty and staff of the School of Social Work, as well as members of the University faculty and staff.

The group met Tuesday to determine the status of the search, and Edwards said the committee is not feeling pressured for time quite yet and has not set a deadline.

"There is no real time frame," he said. "Ideally, we would like to have someone identified to begin on January 1, 2002. Hopefully, we'll have someone chosen by the end of the summer."

Edwards began working at UNC in 1992 as the dean of the School of Social Work and served as the interim provost after Dick Richardson's retirement last summer.

Robert Shelton filled the provost position Feb 1.

Edwards said the search committee is looking for well-rounded candidates who are familiar with every aspect of the University.

He said the process of searching for a new dean is very complex.

Kim Strom-Gottfried, committee member and interim dean of the School of Social Work, also said the committee is looking for various qualities in possible replacements.

These qualities include administration experience in higher education and skills in raising funds.

"We need someone who has the ability to lead us toward a vision that the school is striving for," she said.

"They need to understand all of the school's dimensions. They will serve as a minister of external affairs and represent the dimensions of the school and the University."

Strom-Gottfried emphasized the importance of a future dean's ability to raise needed funds for the school.

"We are a small school," she said. "Social workers aren't noted for taking in high salaries.

"We need to find people who will financially support our school. The next dean must have the ability to find this support."

Shelton and Chancellor James Moeser will make the final decision over who will fill Edwards' shoes.

Edwards said although Moeser will have little input before this point, he will be kept informed of the search's progress.

Strom-Gottfried attended the search committee's first meeting and said it went well.

"We basically laid out our work plan for what needs to get done," she said. "We will vigorously pursue seeking candidates.

"We have ambitiously created a search plan to get someone is the office as soon as possible."

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