One regent predicts Garrey Carruthers will be finalist
Javier Gonzales, a regent of New Mexico State University, predicted Monday that Carruthers will be one of the five finalists for the school's presidency. Carruthers, right, now is dean of NMSU’s College of Business.
The names of the finalists will be made public Tuesday by Mike Cheney, chairman of the NMSU Board of Regents.
Gonzales, of Santa Fe, said that of the regents only Cheney knows the names of the final five. He received them Friday from the presidential search committee.
But, Gonzales said, he sizes up Carruthers as one of the contenders to run NMSU.
“He’s a governor and he’s a dean, right? I’d be surprised if he wasn’t a finalist,” Gonzales said in an interview.
Carruthers, a Republican, was governor from 1987 through 1990. He has been business dean since 2003.
Carruthers has bachelor's and master's degrees in agricultural economics from NMSU and a Ph.D. in economics from Iowa State University.
The forced resignation last year of NMSU president Barbara Couture makes this selection especially important, said Gonzales, right.
“We need to get it right this time,” he said.
The regents soured on Couture before she completed her third year in office.
She received a $453,000 buyout authorized by the regents in return for her resignation. Gonzales said he believed the buyout was the surest way for a clean start at NMSU.
Two state legislators were upset enough at Couture's golden parachute that they introduced a bill to stop such practices. The bill died in a committee of the House of Representatives.
If Gonzales is correct that Carruthers is a finalist, he said he hoped the rest of the field would have resumes just as deep.
“We need four equally strong individuals,” Gonzales said.
He said Carruthers was not the only internal candidate and would be eager to see if anyone else on the NMSU staff advanced to the final five.
The finalists will begin campus interviews April 26, Gonzales said. Regents hope to select a president by the weekend of May 4, he said.