After a nearly six-month-long search, the Claremont University Consortium (CUC) has hired Stig Lanesskog as its new Chief Executive Officer. Before accepting the position, Lanesskog worked as a professional consultant and, most recently, as the Associate Provost for Strategic Planning and Assessment at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.
The selection process for a new CEO began last December after former CEO Robert Walton left to become the Vice President of Finance and Administration at Vassar College. The independent search committee was made up of various at-large overseers, as well as Pitzer College President Laura Trombley, Claremont McKenna College President Hiram Chodosh and Scripps College President Lori Bettison-Varga. The committee hired consultants from Korn Ferry, who met extensively with administrators from each of the colleges as well as the CUC Board of Overseers to define expectations for the next CEO.
Bettison-Varga, who served as a co-chair of the panel, said that the new CEO of the CUC has a “very complicated structure” to become acquainted with.
“Imagine coming as the CEO of the CUC, which is the eighth independent entity in the consortium, but serving the seven institutions and having the reporting structure that works with the presence of seven institutions as well as the board of overseers,” she said.
An independent entity, the CUC is the bridge between all seven schools. The CUC supports and oversees a wide variety of resources and services shared across all campuses, including the Black Student Affairs and Chicano/Latino Student Affairs offices, the Chaplains, Student Health Services, Health Education Outreach, Monsour Counseling and Psychological Services (MCAPS), the Student Disability Resources Center and Campus Safety.
In an email to TSL, Lanesskog wrote that he is responsible for “the effective management of staffing and monetary resources” for these services, which are funded by the colleges.
“I will be working with these groups and others to develop a long-range strategic plan that furthers the mission of CUC to promote collaboration and to provide innovative, high quality and cost effective customer-oriented services that integrates fully with the missions of the institutions we serve,” he wrote.
Some CUC resources have undergone changes recently—MCAPS, for example, hired several new staff members due to increasing demand. Additionally, on-campus programs at each college, such as the Teal Dot Bystander intervention program at Pomona College and the Project Sister initiative for all colleges, have been successful in creating internal systems of oversight and advocacy, slightly mitigating the need for these shared services. Still, Lanesskog stressed the importance of the services offered by CUC.
“Collaboration and communication among CUC and the campuses is critical,” he wrote. “For the short-term, I am learning as much as possible about CUC and the colleges. For the long-term, I will be working on changes at Campus Safety and on the implementation of a new financial system for all the colleges. For the broader set of services, we will be focusing on assessment and how their service offerings relate to and support the campus communities.”
Bettison-Varga said that one of Lanesskog’s greatest strengths is his experience with “organizational structures and efficiencies” and “helping to put in place processes and systems that will help advance the work of an office or of a group.”