Winona, MN (KROC-AM News)- The list for the next President of a southeast Minnesota university is down to three candidates. 

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A 13-person search committee made up of faculty, students, staff and community members chose the finalists. The candidates are set to make campus visits between Monday and Wednesday. 

The open President role is at Winona State University (WSU). The post became vacant last May, when former WSU President Scott Olson was tabbed to lead the Minnesota State System as Chancellor. 

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The three finalists are current Interim WSU President Kenneth Janz, Karim Ismaili, who is the Executive vice president and provost at Bridgewater State University in Massachusetts and Acting president of State University of New York, Delhi Mary Bonderoff. 

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Janz will be at WSU’s Rochester campus on Tuesday and at the university's Winona campus on Wednesday. 

Minnesota State photo
Janz. Minnesota State photo
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Ismaili will be in Rochester at the WSU campus on Monday then visit the Winona campus on Tuesday. 

Ismaili. Minnesota State Photo
Ismaili. Minnesota State Photo
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Bonderoff is scheduled to appear at the Rochester campus on Wednesday and visit WSU’s Winona campus on Thursday. 

Bonderoff. Minnesota State Photo
Bonderoff. Minnesota State Photo
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A news release issued by the state system says the visits will give the WSU community the chance to meet the candidates and provide feedback on the finalists. Details regarding the candidates visits are available by clicking here

The news release also describes the credentials of the three finalists: 

Janz: 

Kenneth Janz currently serves as interim president of Winona State University, a role he has held since August, 2023. Previously, he served WSU from 2008 to 2023 as associate vice president for Academic Affairs and CIO and added the role of dean of the library in 2015. Previous appointments include serving Indiana State University as the director of the Center for Instruction, Research, and Technology from 2003 to 2008, and as the director of information technology – College of Education from 1998 to 2003. He holds bachelor’s degrees from Dickinson State University (ND), a master’s from North Dakota State University, and a doctorate from Indiana State University. He is scheduled to visit the Rochester campus of Winona State University on Tuesday, February 13, and the Winona campus on Wednesday, February 14.

-Minnesota State news release

Isamiali:

Karim Ismaili has served Bridgewater State University (MA) as executive vice president and provost since 2021. Previously, he served Bridgewater as provost and vice president for academic affairs from 2018 to 2021 (interim from 2016 to 2017), special advisor to the president for university priorities and global engagement in 2016, vice provost from 2014 to 2016, and dean of the College of Graduate Studies from 2013 to 2014. He also served Kennesaw State University (GA) from 2010 to 2013 as associate dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, and Toronto Metropolitan University from 2006 to 2010 as inaugural chair of the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Simon Fraser University (Canada), a master’s from the University of Cambridge, and a doctorate from the University of Western Ontario. He is scheduled to visit the Rochester campus of Winona State University on Monday, February 12, and the Winona campus on Tuesday, February 13.

-Minnesota State news release

 Bonderoff: 

Mary Bonderoff currently serves as acting president of State University of New York (SUNY), Delhi, a role she has held since May, 2022. Previously, she served SUNY Central Administration as special advisor to the chancellor from 2021 to 2022. She served SUNY Morrisville as vice president for student affairs and chief diversity officer from 2020 to 2022 and chief diversity officer and Title IX coordinator from 2017 to 2020. She also served SUNY Oneonta from 1996 to 2017 in various capacities including director of the Center for Multicultural Experiences, director of student diversity and advocacy, and director of diversity education and campus outreach. She holds a bachelor’s degree and a master’s from SUNY Oneonta and a doctorate from Northeastern University (MA). She is scheduled to visit the Rochester campus of Winona State University on Wednesday, February 14, and the Winona campus on Thursday, February 15.

-Minnesota State news release

Following the visits Chancellor Olson will make a recommendation to the Minnesota State Colleges and University’s Board of Trustees. The board is expected to consider the recommendation during its March 20 meeting. 

The anticipated start date for WSU’s next president is July 1. 

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