Chancellor search listening sessions scheduled March 17 at UT Martin

The search for a new University of Tennessee at Martin chancellor begins publicly Friday, March 17, with listening sessions scheduled for the main campus. University of Tennessee System officials and a representative from the executive search firm hired to assist with the search will visit with different groups from 8 a.m.-4 p.m.

A public listening session is set for 2-3 p.m. in the Smith Legislative Chamber located in the Boling University Center. For those unable to attend, a link to the public session will be available by Zoom at Other sessions throughout the day will be open to students, faculty and staff members.

Information will be gathered to identify a pool of candidates from which a potential successor to Dr. Keith Carver will be recommended to UT President Randy Boyd and the UT Board of Trustees. The UT board approved the search process, timeline and statement of qualifications for the position Feb. 24. Carver left the university March 1 following more than six years as chancellor to lead the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture.

Conducting the sessions will be David Miller, senior vice president and chief financial officer, and Ashlie Czyz, executive director of talent management, both representing the UT System, and John Thornburgh, senior partner with WittKeiffer. Miller is serving as search committee chair.

The chancellor serves as chief executive officer for UT Martin and serves on the UT leadership team, reporting directly to the UT System president. The position is appointed by the president and elected by the UT Board of Trustees. A finalist for the position is expected to be named this June. Complete information about the search can be found at

The search committee includes 11 current UT Martin faculty and staff members, one university alumnus and a current student. Committee members are:

  • Petra McPhearson, senior vice president for finance and administration
  • Kurt McGuffin, vice chancellor and director of athletics
  • Andy Lewter, vice chancellor of student affairs
  • Philip Smartt, professor, Department of Agriculture, Geoscience, and Natural Resources
  • Ahmad Tootoonchi, dean of the College of Business and Global Affairs
  • Destin Tucker, director of admissions
  • Anderson Starling, interim associate provost and associate professor of political science
  • Kiara Castleman, assistant registrar
  • Dominique Crockett, director, Office of Equity and Diversity, and Title IX coordinator
  • Debi Adcock, administrative assistant to the vice chancellor
  • Kelli Deere, director, UT Martin Parsons Center
  • Jerry Reese, UT Martin alumnus
  • Dawson Gremmels, UT Martin student and Student Government Association president


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