The State University of New York (SUNY) Board of Trustees has named Dr. Alexander N. Cartwright as the next provost and executive vice chancellor of SUNY. Cartwright is currently the vice president for research and economic development at the University at Buffalo (UB).
The search committee for the next provost, chaired by Binghamton University President Harvey Stenger, began interviewing candidates for the position in May 2013.
According to Stenger, some of Cartwright’s qualifications that distinguished him from other candidates for the position were his reputation as a professor and communicator as well as his knowledge of the SUNY system.
“He is a vice president at a SUNY campus, the University at Buffalo, so he brings a lot of specific knowledge of the SUNY system that’s going to be very important for him to make contributions in a short period of time,” Stenger said. “Secondly, he’s a very well-rounded professor, he is a great teacher, he is a great scholar and researcher, and he’s very engaged in the economic development of the Buffalo area.”
The provost title at the SUNY level is similar to that of a campus provost, Stenger said. The SUNY provost is responsible for reviewing new academic programs for each of the 64 campuses. However, the office is not involved in hiring of faculty or in student life, which are the responsibilities of a campus provost.
In addition to being the SUNY provost, Cartwright was also appointed executive chancellor of academic affairs. The committee searched for candidates with a strong background in academics and research, Stenger said.
“You want someone that is going to be well-respected by the presidents and provosts of all the SUNY campuses and that means that they have to be a great academic leader and scholar; they have to be a good teacher, good scholar, good researcher,” Stenger said. “They have to be the kind of role model we anticipate the provost to be.”
The Office of the Provost is also responsible for allocating resources and funds to all of the SUNY campuses, while being aware of the specific needs of the campus.
“You have to have somebody that understands that all the SUNY campuses are different and that some campuses need certain things and other campuses need different things,” Stenger said. “The perspective of the differences between the campuses is going to be critical.”
Cartwright served as vice provost for UB 2020 Strategic Strengths initiative which bolstered research infrastructure at UB and hired approximately 100 new faculty members during times of budget cuts in 2009.
The committee also consisted of SUNY Central Vice Chancellor Johanna Duncan-Poitier, SUNY Research Foundation President Timothy Killeen, Plattsburgh President John Ettling, Delhi Provost Dr. John S. Nader, Brockport professor Dr. Kenneth O’Brien, Onondaga Community College department Chairperson Dr. Tina Good, student representative to SUNY Board of Trustees Tremayne Price, and SUNY Trustees Gerri Warren-Merrick and Ronald G. Ehrenberg.