Former dean appointed as interim provost

Bryan Slinker will keep his position until June 2020, Schulz says

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EUGENE LEE | THE DAILY EVERGREEN

Phil Weiler, WSU vice president for marketing and communications, said Slinker announced beforehand his plan to retire from his position as dean. “He was getting ready to retire,” Weiler said. “It’s a little bit of a change in his plans, so he has agreed to step in and fill in as interim provost during this period between now and the end of June.”

LOREN NEGRON, Evergreen reporter

President Kirk Schulz appointed Bryan Slinker, former dean of the WSU College of Veterinary Medicine, as interim provost and executive vice president on Monday after Mitzi Montoya’s resignation as provost last week.

Slinker’s appointment took effect Monday and will last through June 30, 2020, according to an email Schulz sent to faculty and staff members. Robert Mealey, former director of WSU’s Animal Health Research Center, was appointed to fill Slinker’s past role as dean. Mealey’s appointment took effect on Monday as well.

Schulz met with the WSU faculty senate executive committee Monday to discuss how this change will affect faculty, according to an email to the faculty senate from Greg Crouch, WSU faculty senate chair.

That meeting was closed to the public.

“Kirk is aware of the unease caused as these events have unfolded,” Crouch wrote in the email.

Phil Weiler, WSU vice president for marketing and communications, said Slinker announced beforehand his plan to retire from his position as dean.

“He was getting ready to retire,” Weiler said. “It’s a little bit of a change in his plans, so he has agreed to step in and fill in as interim provost during this period between now and the end of June.”

Slinker received his doctorate in veterinary medicine and PhD from WSU. He joined the WSU faculty in 1992 as an associate professor in the department of veterinary and comparative anatomy, pharmacology, and physiology. Slinker was also a member of the WSU Research Foundation board of directors.

“I think Dr. Slinker has tremendous experience at Washington State University. He really can step into this role and immediately continue initiatives that are already underway,” Weiler said.

He said Slinker’s role as interim provost will focus on the university’s day-to-day operations. A provost also acts as the chief academic adviser. Slinker will lead faculty tenure decisions and promotions and will help narrow down what types of opportunities will be available for classes and majors.

Slinker’s role as provost is critical for three main projects, Weiler said. The provost will help design a new budget model, develop a five-year strategic plan for the entire WSU system, and establish a system-wide vision to efficiently recruit new students.

Weiler said Schulz will announce what his plans are concerning the search for a permanent provost, as well as plans for a search committee. A permanent provost may be appointed before June 30, 2020.