The College of Charleston board of trustees on Friday narrowed its list of candidates to five as they seek a replacement for outgoing school president George Benson. But board members are not giving any clue at this point who their finalists are.
Chairman Greg Padgett said the board wants to contact the five finalists before making the names public.
The search is getting statewide attention after current Lt. Gov. Glenn McConnell expressed interest in the position. McConnell even announced earlier this year that he will not seek reelection to the lieutenant governor’s office so he could potentially take the job at his alma mater. The former senator still enjoys plenty of support in the state legislature, which appoints College of Charleston’s board of directors. Many members of the legislature, especially those from the Charleston region, are making it clear they want McConnell at the helm.
But a search committee returned five finalists earlier this month — and McConnell’s name was not among them. That has created more public pressure from the Charleston legislators, especially as the board of trustees is not obligated to choose a candidate from among those finalists. Meanwhile, the school’s foundation board is urging the trustees to stick with those five names, the Charleston Post & Courier reports.
Board members themselves have signed a non-disclosure agreement, meaning they cannot comment on the search. Benson says he will eventually be included in the selection process, but is not for the moment.