YOUNGSTOWN - Youngs-town State University soon will begin the search for a new president.
Youngstown State University President Cynthia E. Anderson announced her retirement, effective July 1, during an executive session meeting with the board of trustees last Wednesday.
A search committee will be implemented to consider candidates for the vacant position, which will be a national search, said university communications director Ron Cole. A consultant has been used in the past, but the first thing the board must do is determine what process they utilize to move forward, and "the hope is to do that as quickly as possible," he said.
Anderson, 59, became the university's seventh president and first female chief on Feb. 17, 2010. She also was the first Youngstown-area native and first YSU graduate to serve as president in the school's 103-year history, as well as a former vice president of the university's Student Affairs.
"It has been a distinct honor and privilege - and a dream come true - to serve my beloved alma mater as president over the past two and a half years," Anderson said in a memo to campus on Monday. "Youngstown State University has been my home, and you have all been my family. It is because of you that YSU has been such a success, and for that I thank all of you."
Sudershan Garg, chair of the Youngstown State University board of trustees, expressed sadness regarding Anderson's decision, but said she understands her position and is pleased with her accomplishments as president, including "maintaining a balanced budget through extraordinarily challenging financial circumstances, negotiating concessionary labor agreements ... formulating a comprehensive strategic plan and restoring a culture of collegiality and respect with the board of trustees and across campus."
"Her leadership has made a positive difference, and her enthusiasm will be missed," Garg said.
Anderson is on vacation and was not available for further comment.