Dean of student life search continues

Jeff Stanich | Staff Reporter

When Irene Stevens retired in May 2013, the dean of student life position did not have someone to immediately fill it.

The position is still unfilled after a summer of searching for a replacement, leaving all of the day-to-day responsibilities on other administrators’ shoulders.

Levester Johnson, vice president of student affairs, has been doing both positions’ work while the search continues.

Johnson said a search process was completed with candidates from around the country coming to Butler University and interviewing.

However, he said no candidate had everything the university needed for the position.

“This isn’t the position where you can just settle,” Johnson said. “We’re going to get this right.”

Craig Fisher, Student Government Association president, said he was included in the search process over the summer.

He said he met with some of the candidates, but in the end a perfect match was not found.

He said he is looking for someone who is a good listener, has passion for Butler and works well with the students.

“Whoever is next should feel right on campus,” Fisher said, “just as students fit well with Butler.”

The search process includes looking at all candidates who show interest and match what the university needs.

Johnson said he and the Office of Student Life are looking for someone with experience in the field who will bring new ideas to the table.

“We aren’t looking for a new Irene Stevens,” Johnson said, “but for someone who can do a great job like she did.”

Even though classes have started, Johnson said they aren’t approaching the search with urgency, but rather patience, in order to find the best candidate.

“The only sense of urgency is from me,” Johnson said, “I’ve been balancing two jobs.”

Sally Click, dean of student services, has also taken on some of the responsibilities.

“We miss her terribly and realize how involved she was,” Click said. “We want to be honest: we have high expectations.”

With no exact timetable set, Johnson said he does not have a definite answer to when the position will be filled.

“In an ideal situation, we will go through the search process again and have the position filled by second semester,” Johnson said.