Antoine Garibaldi said he will withdraw from consideration to be president of Eastern Michigan University.
By BARRY KLEIN
© St. Petersburg Times,
One of the three finalists for the University of South Florida presidency recently interviewed for the top job at Eastern Michigan University.
Antoine Garibaldi, the provost at Howard University in Washington D.C., said Wednesday he intends to withdraw from the search at Eastern Michigan.
"It's somewhat confidential, but that is my intention," said Garibaldi, one of four candidates for the presidency at Eastern Michigan, a 23,000-student school that recently celebrated its 150th birthday.
Garibaldi's involvement in another presidential search was a surprise to Dennis Ross, who is chairing the Board of Regents search committee that has spent months seeking a replacement for Betty Castor.
"I was not aware of it, but it doesn't bother me either," Ross said. "It certainly doesn't bother me if he is pulling out of the other search."
Garibaldi said he informed university system Chancellor Adam Herbert about his interest in Eastern Michigan, which hopes to name a new leader by June.
Herbert could not be reached for comment Wednesday. Keith Goldschmidt, a university system spokesman, said Eastern Michigan's courting of Garibaldi is a testament to his quality as an administrator.
"We wouldn't be interested in people that aren't of interest to other universities," Goldschmidt said.
Ward Mullens, a spokesman at Eastern Michigan, said Garibaldi is one of four candidates who met in late January with students, faculty and staff.
That interview came two weeks after Garibaldi met with students, faculty, staff and community leaders at USF. Last week, he met with the regents search committee.
At neither session did he mention his interest in another school.
Officials at Eastern Michigan referred questions about the status of Garibaldi's candidacy to Philip Incarnati, the chairman of the school's Board of Regents. He did not return a call seeking comment. The next president at Eastern Michigan will earn $185,000 annually.