University of Missouri System Curators will announce this afternoon that Gordon H. Lamb, a former interim chancellor at University of Missouri-Kansas City, has been chosen as interim system president.
Although curators remained mum at Thursday’s board meeting in Rolla, a coworker of Lamb’s at EFL Associates, a company that searches for leadership candidates in both corporate and academic fields, confirmed that he will temporarily fill the role now held by outgoing president Elson Floyd. Lamb is a higher-education consultant with EFL.
Kristen Faust, manager of client services for EFL Associates, said Lamb will take a leave of absence from the firm but will return once curators have hired a new president. “He’s done a fabulous job for EFL Associates,” Faust said, “and he’s going to be back after he’s the interim president.”
Faust said Lamb will offer a unique perspective as interim. She said he has been on both sides of the executive search process in higher education, and in addition to having served as an interim chancellor, he currently conducts searches for leadership position candidates in higher education.
“If you look at his bio and what he’s done, he’s impressive,” Faust said.
Lamb established the higher education practice at EFL in 2000. Before joining the firm, Lamb served as vice president of academic affairs at the University of Texas at San Antonio, president of Northeastern Illinois University and interim chancellor at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside, according to EFL Associates’ Web site. He held the interim chancellor’s position at UMKC from 1999 to 2000, according to a list of past leaders on UMKC’s Web site.
Faust said Lamb’s selection for the position was an honor for the firm.
“It represents the type of people we have in our education practice,” she said.
Faust said Lamb makes a point to know his clients, an aspect of his leadership style that will carry over into his new position. “He knows them,” she said of the curators and the UM System. “He’ll bring leadership where they need it on the interim.”
Lamb holds a bachelor’s degree in music education from Simpson College in Indianola, Iowa, a master’s degree in music from the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, and a Ph.D. from the University of Iowa.
Missourian reporter Stephen Nellis contributed to this story.