After resigning as UNC-CH’s provost, Blouin up for president of Florida State

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UNC-Chapel Hill provost Bob Blouin is in the running to be the next president of Florida State University in Tallahassee.

Blouin resigned as UNC-CH’s executive vice chancellor and provost last week, with plans to rejoin the faculty in the Eshelman School of Pharmacy. As a leader of UNC’s academic and strategic planning, Blouin played a critical role in managing the university’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Now, he could be taking that experience to lead Florida State. The university began its national search in September when current president John Thrasher, a long-time Florida Republican politician, announced his retirement.

Florida State’s presidential search process is open to the public, and the search committee members have openly discussed potential candidates. Their meetings also allow public comments and are streamed online.

At Tuesday’s meeting, Alberto Pimentel, managing partner at the search firm FSU hired to find candidates, said Blouin is one of four candidates who has drawn the most interest from the search committee. Multiple search committee members also mentioned Blouin was a top-tier candidate and said they are eager to interview him.

Blouin and eight other candidates will be interviewed in Tallahassee on Friday and Saturday. Those meetings and interviews will also be live-streamed.

The committee will narrow the pool and invite candidates to come to campus for forums with faculty, staff and students next week. Then the committee will review the information and make a recommendation to the FSU Board of Trustees, which is scheduled to meet June 2 to interview that slate of candidates.