National search for next University of Nebraska at Kearney chancellor initiated by University of Nebraska

Doug Kristensen, UNK Chancellor
Doug Kristensen
Chris Kabourek
Chris Kabourek

The University of Nebraska has taken the first steps in its national search for the next chancellor of the University of Nebraska at Kearney.

Interim President Chris Kabourek announced today that the university has hired CarterBaldwin, an executive search firm, to assist in the process.

Kabourek has also appointed a search committee of students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members to help guide the search. The search committee will assist the President’s Office in gathering stakeholder input on what qualities the university should seek in the next chancellor, developing a job description, and recruiting and vetting nominations and applications.

The committee will be chaired by Brooke Envick, associate dean and professor in the College of Business and Technology. Other members are:

  • Kelly Bartling, vice chancellor for enrollment management and marketing
  • Jerry Catlett, president and COO, Bruning Bank
  • Chris Exstrom, professor in the Department of Chemistry
  • Brad Green, associate director in the Office of Financial Aid
  • Brenda Jensen, interim city manager, City of Kearney
  • Temo Molina, UNK student body president and a junior business administration and political science major
  • Omar Sanchez, junior accounting and finance major
  • Wendy Schardt, director of student health and counseling
  • Paul Twigg, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences
  • Tom Tye, attorney, Tye & Rowling, PC LLO
  • Nita Unruh, associate vice chancellor for academic affairs and professor in the department of Kinesiology and Sports Sciences

A third student will be added to the search committee when identified. Kabourek thanked all members of the university community who submitted nominations.

“This is a great team that will help us find the right person who can keep UNK moving forward,” Kabourek said. “I’m grateful to the faculty, staff, students and community members who are willing to step up and serve, and especially to Professor Envick for agreeing to lead this important process. I look forward to talking with the extended UNK community about the vision for UNK’s future and together I know we will be able to find the next great leader who will pick up where Chancellor Kristensen will leave off.”

Kabourek said next steps in the search process will include campus listening sessions to gather input from the UNK and Kearney communities on what the university should look for in the next chancellor. Details on the listening sessions will be shared as they are scheduled. Following the listening sessions, the search firm and search committee will work together with the President’s Office to develop a job description and begin inviting nominations and applications.

The next chancellor will succeed current Chancellor Doug Kristensen, who is retiring at the end of the academic year after 22 years in the role. Kristensen is the longest-serving chancellor in University of Nebraska history.