The search for Ohio University’s next president has been narrowed to two candidates.
Susana Rivera-Mills, one of three people being considered by OU’s Board of Trustees for the position, has voluntarily withdrawn her candidacy, according to a university-wide email from Peggy Viehweger, chair of the Presidential Search Committee.
Rivera-Mills currently serves as provost and executive vice president for academic affairs at Ball State University. In her email, Viehweger — who is also chair of the Board — acknowledged the search committee did not anticipate Rivera-Mills’ decision but wrote that it’s not unusual for candidates to rescind their applications for a variety of reasons.
“The Board and I remain confident in the strength of the finalists put forward by the search committee, and we have received significant positive feedback on each of our candidates,” Viehweger wrote in the email.
The Board must now choose between Avinandan “Avi” Mukherjee, provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at Marshall University, and Lori Stewart Gonzalez, executive vice president and provost at the University of Louisville, to be OU’s 23rd president. President Hugh Sherman has been vocal since his selection as OU’s 22nd president in May 2021 that he would only serve in his position for two years.
If selected, Gonzalez would make history as OU’s first female presidentMukherjee would make history as OU’s first foreign-born president.