Search continues for new university relations director

Tracy Deutmeyer

The University Relations Search Committee and administrators continue their quest to find a new university relations director at Iowa State University.

Since August, the committee has been seeking candidates for the position and hopes to begin reviewing applicants by the end of October.

“Our soft deadline is at the end of October to begin reviewing, but we will take applications after that,” said David Holger, chairperson of the committee and an associate dean in the College of Engineering .

“We have seen some interested constituencies. We have had some response,” Holger said.

The director is the primary media spokesperson for the university, Holger said.

“The director is the lightning rod for the university. The director oversees strategies for working with the media on all levels,” Holger said.

Holger said the director also supervises the News and Photo Services, as well as Internal Communications.

He said the director also plays an advisory role in writing speeches for key administrators.

Murray Blackwelder, vice president of external affairs, said the director manages news inside and outside the university.

The search committee was assembled in August. It hopes to submit a list of well-qualified finalists to Blackwelder before Christmas, Holger said.

Blackwelder hopes to make a decision a few weeks after Christmas.

“As a committee, we are not dictating Blackwelder’s decision. We are just making suggestions of people he might interview,” Holger said.

John Anderson currently serves as interim director for university relations.