About Concordia

Presidential Search


New President Elected

Concordia University Chicago’s Board of Regents has elected Dr. Russell Dawn to serve as the University’s 12th president. By Aug. 1, 2019, Dr. Dawn will succeed retiring President Dr. Daniel Gard. Read the full press announcement.


Call for Nominations is Now Closed

Concordia University Chicago, River Forest, Illinois is undertaking a search for its next president. The president is the chief executive officer of the University’s Board of Regents and serves as the University’s spiritual, academic and administrative head of the institution. The official functions of the office of president are described in the 2016 LCMS Handbook, section 3.10.6.6.

The call for nominations closed February 15, 2019. The Presidential Search Committee is gathering and reviewing information from nominees and will submit recommendations to the Board of Regents at its March 2019 meeting.

Sixty-two candidates have been nominated for the Concordia University Chicago presidency. Of those, 26 have elected to stand. A list of candidates is available here.

These candidates are currently being evaluated by the Presidential Search Committee, which will report their recommendations to the Board of Regents at the Regents’ quarterly meeting (March 22-23). The Board will create its short list for the presidency at that meeting. Congregations and other interested parties are welcomed and encouraged to submit comments on the candidates via email at Presidential.Search@cuchicago.edu. The comment period will close May 15.

The following qualifications are required of all nominees. They must: 

  • Be a member of a Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod (LCMS) congregation and male, faithful to the Scriptures as the Word of God and to the theological positions of the LCMS.
  • Be able to articulate and embody the mission, vision and core values of the University as the university of choice for all seeking higher education in an intentionally Lutheran environment to develop body, mind and soul to serve their neighbors in the vocations to which God has called them.
  • Possess an advanced academic degree (earned doctorate desirable).

The following qualifications are sought in all nominees. They should exhibit:

  • Spiritual Leadership - able and willing to set the Christian tone for the University by publicly demonstrating the Christian faith as rightly expressed in our Lutheran Confessions that informs everything we do and how we do it and to demonstrate that Christian faith in his personal life and in relationships with others.
  • Strategic Leadership - ability to inspire vision and lead strategic planning, initiate short-term and long-term goals and objectives for the University, and execute plans with an entrepreneurial spirit in an ever-changing market. 
  • Advancement Leadership - evidence of ability to raise funds from individual donors, private and non-profit sources, government, corporations, and foundations and to establish and build partnerships with other institutions, the business community, and lead university fundraising initiatives.
  • Organizational Leadership - ability to lead a complex higher education organization, manage risk and legal issues, and build a cohesive team of quality administrators and staff who are empowered with appropriate delegation in their specialties while remaining accountable to the president and the mission of the University.
  • Academic Leadership - committed to the best practices in higher education, ensuring academic excellence and distinction while seeking and retaining high-quality faculty who understand and support the mission of a liberal arts university of the LCMS.
  • Multi-stakeholder Leadership - ability to work effectively with regents, faculty, staff, students, parents, alumni and the LCMS-at-large by engendering passion for the University, promoting optimism about the future and exhibiting a willingness to share knowledge, power and credit.
  • Community Building Leadership - enthusiastic about building positive relationships aimed at unifying and instilling confidence within a diverse university by engaging with community members in a way that shows personal care and encourages them to follow that lead.
  • Fiscal Leadership - possesses an ability for stewarding the fiscal resources of the University.

According to the LCMS Handbook, nominations may only be accepted from LCMS congregations, the Concordia University Chicago faculty, the Concordia University Chicago Board of Regents, and the Board of Directors of the LCMS Concordia University System.