Commissioner of Education and President of the University of the State of New York

Position Overview

This search is extended and will remain open until at least October 1, 2020.

The New York State Board of Regents has extended its search and invites applications and nominations for the position of Commissioner of Education and President of the University of the State of New York.

The Board seeks an individual who will bring visionary, transformative, inclusive, equitable, and decisive leadership to the position as the Board's chief executive officer. The Commissioner reports directly to the Board and provides coordinating, collaborative leadership for the New York State Education Department (NYSED) Offices of P-12 Education, Higher Education, Adult Career and Continuing Education Services, Cultural Education, Professions, Performance Improvement and Management Services, Executive, Finance, and Legal Counsel.

With a budget of approximately $39 billion which includes State Aid to Schools, the New York State Board of Regents is the governing body of the University of the State of New York (USNY) and is the oldest continuous policy-making board of education in the United States. The Board plays a leading role in developing and advancing statewide education policies and initiatives. USNY is the most complete, interconnected system of educational services in the United States and includes more than 7,000 public and private elementary and secondary schools; more than 600 public, independent, and proprietary colleges, universities and postsecondary career schools; 1,500 museums; 3,000 historical repositories; 7,000 libraries; 14 public broadcasting facilities; nearly 1,000,000 professionals practicing in 54 licensed professions; 240,000 certified teachers, counselors, and administrators; special education services including pre-school and school age children and teenagers; and vocational rehabilitation and other services for adults with disabilities. The State Education Department is also responsible for the oversight of the State Museum, State Library, State Archives, Office of Educational Television and Public Broadcasting, and the State School for the Blind and State School for the Deaf.  The NYSED is supported by a full-time staff of close to 3,000 employees.

The Board of Regents seeks an individual with exceptional qualities of leadership, statesmanship, and unquestionable integrity.  The Commissioner should have the ability to articulate a shared vision that will shape the future of the state’s largest educational enterprise, bringing creative, can-do problem-solving while carrying out the goals and policies of the Board of Regents in a responsible manner. As the face and voice of the NYSED, the Commissioner will be a forward-thinking, inspirational, and compelling statewide communicator.

ATTRIBUTES

The successful applicant will have an earned doctorate/terminal degree from an accredited institution of higher education (preferred) and a record of the following:

  • Ability to develop effective relationships with the Chancellor and Board of Regents and to instill their trust, confidence, and respect;
  • Ability to develop effective relationships with stakeholders and public officials;
  • Senior management experience in a large, complex organization with multiple stakeholders;
  • Understanding and responding to financial challenges, demands for financial accountability, and improved performance;
  • Believing in and supporting excellence, equity, and inclusion initiatives;
  • Achieving diversity at all levels in policies, procedures, and practices;
  • Experience in addressing the needs of all students, including students with disabilities and English language learners/multilingual learners throughout the P-20 educational pipeline;
  • Engagement in a transparent, equitable, and shared governance environment;
  • Ability to attract, support, supervise, and develop an outstanding management and administrative staff;
  • Knowledge of technology in education settings and its operational and instructional uses;
  • Understanding of complex national education health-related issues and their impact on the state;
  • Ability to give balanced attention to a diverse statewide population and geography;
  • Understanding of collective bargaining and labor relations;
  • Experience in statewide master planning or public agenda development; and
  • Ability to collaborate effectively, communicate openly, and listen carefully.

The Board of Regents and Regents Search Committee will identify a candidate with considerable emotional intelligence who will embrace the power of continuity with change. The candidate will foster a culture of community throughout the New York State Education Department and the University of the State of New York.

Nominations and Applications

To assure best consideration, applications and nominations should be received by October 1, 2020. The application should include a letter of interest of not more than three pages; a current résumé (or curriculum vitae); and the names of five professional references with each person’s position, office or home address, e-mail address, and telephone numbers.

Nominations and applications should be sent electronically (MS Word or PDF Format) to nysedcommissioner@agbsearch.com.

Applications will remain confidential through the semifinalist stage; references will be contacted only with prior authorization from the applicant.

For additional information about the New York State Education Department, visit: www.nysed.gov

The search is being assisted by:

Jim McCormick, Executive Search Consultant, jim.mccormick@agbsearch.com, (651) 238-5188

Janice Fitzgerald, Executive Search Consultant, janice.fitzgerald@agbsearch.com, (717) 580-0663

Tom Layzell, Executive Search Consultant, tom.layzell@agbsearch.com, (217) 691-0462

It is the policy of the State Education Department to provide for and promote equal opportunity in employment, compensation and other terms and conditions of employment without discrimination on the basis of age, race, color, religion, disability, national origin, gender, genetic predisposition or carrier status, sexual orientation, marital status, or arrest and/or criminal conviction record unless based upon a bona fide occupational qualification or other exception.