Update on DLF’s Senior Program Officer Search

Dear DLF Community,

Following our recent news about what is shaping up to be an exciting Forum, we wanted to also update you on the DLF Senior Program Officer position that was posted earlier this year. The search was notable for its strong, diverse pool of candidates and the many perspectives each could bring to DLF. The process was conducted with professional diligence and benefited significantly from the expertise and insight of the search committee, culminating in a lively final round of interviews.

Unexpectedly, we were not able to make a successful offer. While we are fortunate to still have a very strong candidate pool, we feel it is important to pause and reflect upon the recent search and wider context and conditions that may have influenced its outcome. We have had conversations with search firms lately that corroborate a significant rise in candidates declining job offers nationally across disciplines and professions. The reasons for this are being explored, but it is believed that many of the positions—like the one for DLF—were posted pre-COVID and that the increased unpredictability of the academic workplace and the understandable avoidance of risk-taking could be significant factors.

Given the importance of the DLF leadership position, we plan to start a second search in early January. CLIR has begun an internal evaluation of the first round search process. This review is taking into account the changes in our academic environment stemming from the disruptions of, and responses to, the pandemic, including a profound rethinking of approaches to teaching, research, information sharing, and community building, as well as the implications for institutional budgets near and longer-term.

As always, your support and engagement are deeply appreciated and essential to DLF’s continued success.

Charles J. Henry

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