An official from the search firm assisting University of
Wisconsin in its chancellor search said Monday making public the name of one of
the chancellor candidates last week was “an honest mistake.”
Jorge Jos?, vice president for research at the University of
Buffalo, is one of the nine candidates in the pool of applicants being reviewed
for the position of chancellor whose names were released to the public. He told
The Badger Herald last weekend the process had been “tainted” by the
disclosure of his name, which he said was to remain confidential.
According to James Farrare, president and senior consultant
at Academic Search, the search firm used by UW, each candidate received an
informational packet in which they could request confidentiality.
“[Jos?] didn’t sign the form, but he stated in a letter
that he wanted [his name] to stay confidential,” Farrare said. “It
was very clear.”
Farrare added confidentiality is a serious concern for both
the Search and Screen Committee conducting the process and the search firm
“Early on in the search, some are not sure if they are
really interested [in the position], but they are willing to explore,”
Farrare said. “Or they don’t want to give anyone on their home campus any
concern that they will leave too early, so they prefer to remain
Jos? said previously in an e-mail he made his request
“for confidentiality VERY clear to the search firm,” and added
confidentiality is essential “for anyone to agree to be considered for
this type of a job.”
Farrare said Jos?’s request for anonymity may have been
overlooked because the confidentiality form included in the packet of materials
was not signed.
“In my view, this event taints the search process that
takes away its seriousness and the lack of regard for the well-being of some of
the candidates being considered,” Jos? said in the e-mail.
According to Farrare, he sent Jos? a letter Monday
apologizing for the mistake. Jos? responded saying he hoped this would be the
last time this happened, Farrare said.
Farrare added Academic Search and UW share the blame for
this mistake because it would be difficult to determine who is at fault. He
does not expect the event will affect the rest of the search process.
UW spokesperson Dennis Chaptman said the university has no
official comment on the issue.