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Interim President and presidential search

The following is a message from Brad Eric Scheler ’74, Chair of Lehigh’s Board of Trustees.

Dear members of the Lehigh community:

As we continue to make great progress in connection with the search for and selection of the 14th President of Lehigh University, I am delighted to relate that Kevin Clayton ’84, ’13P, currently a vice chair of our Board of Trustees and co-chair of the Presidential Search Committee, has agreed to assume the role of interim President of the university effective August 1.

Kevin has a profound commitment to our students and to our mission of teaching, research and service. Drawing on his experience as a student, as an alumnus and as a Lehigh parent, and on his 14 years of service as a trustee, Kevin will bring to the interim presidency a keen and deep understanding of and appreciation for all that is Lehigh. The university has benefited greatly from Kevin’s knowledge, his leadership and his generosity. Kevin’s passion for Lehigh is inspiring and his support of the university has been exemplary.

Kevin is a principal and director of the global investment management firm Oaktree Capital Management, L.P., where he has had a distinguished 19-year career since the firm’s founding in 1995. Kevin has announced he will retire from Oaktree to assume the interim presidency at Lehigh. On behalf of all of us in the Lehigh community, I want to express utmost thanks and appreciation to Howard Marks, Bruce Karsh, John Frank and all of their colleagues at Oaktree for facilitating and accommodating our call of Kevin to service.

The many resources that make Lehigh such a remarkable institution, and ever so attractive to candidates to become our next President, include first and foremost our extraordinary students, faculty, staff, administration and senior officers. Owing to, and by reason of, our extremely talented, dedicated and tireless university leadership team, I am certain that our presidential transition will be seamless and that the momentum and forward progress that is ours will continue. I am also certain that our experienced and extraordinarily capable leadership team will work with Kevin to ensure the best of continuity and leadership of the university.

To ease, facilitate and ensure the best of transitions and the work at hand for Kevin, for the Board and for the leadership team, we have established and appointed an Office of the Interim President and Presidential Transition. The office will be composed of senior officers Pat Farrell, Frank Roth, Pat Johnson, Alan Snyder, Joseph Kender, Henry Odi, Joe Sterrett, Fred McGrail, Peter Gilbert, Mohammed El-Aasser and John Smeaton, and will also include college deans Donald Hall, Georgette Phillips, Gary Sasso, and acting dean Dan Lopresti. Denise Blew will serve as office chief of staff and Erik Walker will serve as senior staff and operations officer. Each of the members of the leadership team will continue in their regular duties and will also participate actively in office-related endeavors and report to and work closely with Kevin and me throughout the transition.

I know Kevin looks forward to working closely with students, faculty and staff, and with the strong and extremely capable senior leadership team to continue our progress and build upon our momentum. You can read more about Kevin’s background in this story about his appointment to the interim presidency, which is posted to the Lehigh websites.

These are exciting times for Lehigh. We are incredibly fortunate that we will have the benefit of Kevin’s character, personal integrity and outstanding leadership abilities to serve Lehigh in this important capacity as we conclude our search for our 14th President. Please join me in welcoming Kevin to his new role and expressing to Kevin, his wife, Lisa, and all in the Clayton family our utmost thanks and appreciation.

Brad Eric Scheler ’74, ’05P, ’08P, ’09PG,
Chair of the Board of Trustees

Posted on Wednesday, July 09, 2014

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