New faces among administration

The last year has brought new faces and new roles to top Butler positions

Changes in Butler University’s administrative roles have been on the rise in the last year.

With new positions coming into existence and other positions opening following retirements, at least five new administrative positions have been filled since President Jim Danko’s inauguration in August 2011.

“Any president, CEO or leader in any sphere, has their own work style,” said Ben Hunter, chief of staff and director of public safety, who was appointed to the newly created position last school year. “We’re helping Butler become more efficient by creating new positions and shifting people around.”

The most recent additions to Butler’s administrative staff include a new interim vice president of university of advancement and an interim vice president of university relations.

Shari Alexander Richey will serve as the interim vice president of Advancement, effective Oct. 1. Richey has served on the Board of Trustees for over nine years.

Marcia Dowell, the former vice president of university relations, stepped down from her position this August to move with her husband to Evansville, Ind.

Courtney Tuell will serve as the interim executive director of university relations meanwhile and search to fill the position continues.

Tuell, a Butler alumna, has served as the director of public relations for the university since 2006.

Tuell said that she doesn’t worry much about the responsibilities in her new administrative role because of past experience.

Tuell had served as the interim executive director for university relations once prior, from June to December 2007.

“For that reason, I think some feel a sense of stability with me in this role again,” Tuell said.

Those two positions, as well as the provost position, are still waiting to be permananetly filled.

In a letter regarding the search to fill open administrative positions, Danko said, “It is especially important to me that we find the right person, as I expect to spend a considerable amount of time working and traveling as we embark on this major capital campaign towards the future.”

Hunter said he is confident in the changes to Butler’s administration.

“All the changes that President Danko has made were definitely in the best interest of the university,” Hunter said. “It’s all about how to best and most efficiently run and operate the university.”

Other new administration members  include Gary Edgerton as the dean of the College of Communications and Kathryn Morris as interim provost following Jamie Comstock’s departure.

Hunter said that, for him, the transition to a new senior administrative position was smooth and welcoming.

“I have been received quite well in the new position,” Hunter said. “The nature of Butler’s senior administration staff, and Butler in general, is that everyone gets along, and everyone knows each other. It’s not like a major institution, and I definitely think that’s an advantage that we have.”


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