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Search committee being formed to find NIU’s next president

Published: Thursday, Nov. 8, 2012 5:30 a.m. CST

DeKALB – Northern Illinois University’s top officials plan to discuss the details of the search committee to replace outgoing President John Peters.

The Board of Trustees should decide components of the presidential search committee, including who the members will be and the committee’s deadline, after its regular committee meetings at noon today, said NIU spokesman Brad Hoey.

“We’re going to talk about the details of the presidential search process with details about the committee that’s formed,” Hoey said.

In the his State of the University address Oct. 11, Peters announced that he was stepping down in June from the position he has held for almost 13 years. Today’s meeting will be the first time the trustees – who are the top decision-makers at the university – have met officially since Peters’ public announcement.

But other events have occurred since Peters’ announcement, and the Board of Trustees might touch on them.

Shortly after the university address, DeKalb County State’s Attorney Clay Campbell charged eight NIU employees and one former employee with different violations regarding the “coffee fund” – an off-the-books account that was used to pay for things such as retirement parties.

On Friday, an NIU student was found dead in a fraternity house off campus. A toxicology report is expected soon. DeKalb police have said they do not expect foul play or suicide.

On Monday, Campbell asked the Illinois State Police to investigate the NIU police and Chief Don Grady after a judge ruled they had withheld evidence in a sexual assault case involving one of the department’s former officers, Andrew Rifkin. University officials said they want the state police to look at all pending police investigations.

Hoey said it was up to the trustees if they want to talk about those matters.

“That would be up to the trustees and their discretion if they wished to address those topics,” Hoey said.

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