Columbia - The UM System Board of Curators interviewed three to five presidential candidates in a closed session on Thursday in St. Louis.
The meeting started at approximately 8:45 a.m. with a conference call, and, after roll was taken, the members voted to close the meeting to the public. The meeting was held on the 35th floor of One U.S. Bank Plaza, in the Thompson Coburn law firm in downtown St. Louis, with a few curators participating by teleconference.
This is the second try for the curators to replace Elson Floyd as UM System president, and attempts to keep the candidates secret are nothing new. Despite the attempts for secrecy, in May, when the previous round of interviews occurred, U.S. Rep. Kenny Hulshof, a Republican, publicly confirmed his candidacy. It also became known that Terry Sutter — the first choice to replace Floyd — declined the position for a job in the private sector.
In July, after the Board of Curator’s regularly scheduled meeting, Board President Don Walsworth announced he would like to present three to five candidates to the Presidential Search Advisory Committee by the end of August. The advisory committee is a 19-member committee made up of faculty, alumni and students from all four campuses. It will make recommendations to the Board of Curators, which will make the final decision.
Frank Schmidt, the advisory committee president, said Wednesday that he had not yet heard of plans to make recommendations. He said the advisory committee does not come in until finalists are selected.
MU spokesman Scott Charton did not return phone calls Thursday after the meeting.