Advisory committee to interview 17 Regent candidate finalists

Candidates will be interviewed in early January.

The University's Board of Regents talk at a meeting on June 10, 2016.

Zach Bielinski

The University’s Board of Regents talk at a meeting on June 10, 2016.

Kevin Beckman

After narrowing the pool from 35 to 17 candidates, the Regent Candidate Advisory Council will interview applicants next month for the four vacant seats on the University of Minnesota’s Board of Regents.

Four of the 12 seats on the Board of regents are open for election every two years, with the winner serving a six-year term.

Incumbent Regents Darrin Rosha, David McMillan and Thomas Devine are up for re-election in Minnesota’s third, eighth and at-large districts, respectively. Regent Laura Brod — an at-large representative — is not running for re-election.

Ardell Brede, chair of the RCAC, said all the candidates are qualified to fill the open positions.

“There’s some pretty outstanding people,” Brede said. “It’ll be interesting.”

Minnesota Student Association President and RCAC member Abeer Syedah said she’s looking for a candidate who can best represent the student voices on campus.

“The most critical thing is ensuring that the student experience is recognized and understood,” Syedah said. “I want to make sure the candidates understand the critical role they have in the lives of individual students, who often become Minnesota taxpayers.”

The candidates from the state’s second district include Ian Benson, James Carter and Sandra Krebsbach.

The third district candidates are Walter Erickson, Pam Langseth, Kent Molde, Ronald Schutz, Tammy Lee Stanoch, Norrie Thomas and incumbent Darrin Rosha.

Current Regent David McMillan is the only candidate for the state’s eighth district.

At-large candidates include Allison Barmann, Taqee Khaled, Stacia Nelson, Kendall Powell, John Regal and incumbent Thomas Devine.

The RCAC is a 24-member advisory council established by the state legislature to recruit, screen and recommend regent candidates for election by the legislature.

The RCAC announced the vacancies for the Board in September.

Interviews for the 35 candidates will be held Jan. 4 – 6, 2017 and will be open to the public.

The RCAC will recommend between two and four candidates for each open position on the Board, which will then be voted on by a joint committee of the Senate and House Higher Education committees.

Candidates will then be voted on by a joint session of the full House and Senate. Regent-hopefuls not selected by the committee can still be elected if nominated and approved during the joint-legislative session.