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Transition Time at Northwestern
An interim president, a search committee; who knew?
By Editorial Staff
With impending leadership changes at Parker University and National University of Health Sciences grabbing the recent headlines, many in the profession may not be aware that Northwestern Health Sciences University is currently searching for a new president.
While the university declined to provide any details regarding his departure (including that he had left), it is clear that Dr. Mark Zeigler is no longer president, as evidenced by the university's acknowledgement that Dr. Michael Wiles, provost and vice president of academic affairs, is serving as interim president – a position he has held since April 2012.
According to Northwestern officials, a search firm has been selected by the university's search committee (consisting of board members, faculty, staff and students) to guide the process of identifying the next president. The application process will be announced once core competencies for the position have been determined.
In addition to providing the above information, Northwestern stated the following when responding to our request for information regarding the leadership transition at the university: "Rising enrollment numbers enable the university to be selective in identifying and attracting a new president. As a leader in chiropractic education, Northwestern continues to make significant contributions to chiropractic clinical research; and advocates for chiropractic and other CAM professions through its Center for Healthcare Innovation and Policy. Additionally, forthcoming revisions to the University mission and vision statement will reflect new growth opportunities. These initiatives, along with expanding programs, are key areas of focus for a new president."
Dr. Zeigler was inaugurated as Northwestern's fifth president on Feb. 2, 2007, replacing Dr. Alfred Traina. A 1980 NWHSU graduate, Dr. Zeigler originally practiced in Sturgis, S.D., and held several professional and governmental leadership positions prior to being named president, including president of the South Dakota Chiropractic Association (1994-1996) and mayor of Sturgis (2001-2004). He was also a member of the Foundation for Chiropractic Progress board of directors. As of press time, it is unknown what circumstances prompted his departure from Northwestern. However, we do know his next professional pursuit: vice president of education for Foot Levelers Inc., a position he assumed Oct. 8.