March 15, 2017

March 15, 2017: Provost Candidates, Waite Chair, and Commencement Speaker

Creighton University President, the Rev. Daniel Hendrickson, SJ

I would like to offer you an update regarding finalists for the provost position as well as announcements regarding the 2017-2018 Waite Chair and our commencement speaker for this May. Too, congratulations are in order.  

With the excellent help of Dr. Tim Dickel and the Provost Search Committee four candidates have been chosen, and I would like to invite you to meet and learn more about each candidate during scheduled open forums. Two open forums will be held for each candidate, from noon-1 p.m. and from 3:30-4:30 p.m. The dates for the candidates’ visits and the locations for the open forums are as follows: 

  • Wednesday, March 22 – Sandra Cassady, PhD
    Noon-1 p.m., Rigge Science Building, Room 120
    3:30-4:30 p.m., Harper Center, Hixson-Lied Auditorium
  • Friday, March 24 – Karin Wurst, PhD
    Noon-1 p.m., Harper Center, Hixson-Lied Auditorium
    3:30-4:30 p.m., Harper Center, Hixson-Lied Auditorium
  • Wednesday, March 29 – Tom Murray, PhD
    Noon-1 p.m., Rigge Science Building, Room 120
    3:30-4:30 p.m., Criss Health Sciences Center, Room 252
  • Thursday, March 30 – Elisabeth Mermann-Jozwiak, PhD
    Noon-1 p.m., Harper Center, Hixson-Lied Auditorium
    3:30-4:30 p.m., Rigge Science Building, Room 120 

During their visits, each candidate will meet with leadership of the Creighton Students Union, vice presidents and vice provosts, members of the Jesuit community, deans, and members of the Faculty Council, along with an individual meeting with me.

Information on the four finalists can be obtained at the previously mentioned Provost Search Committee website. Links are provided to view the candidates’ biographies and CVs, but you must enter your net ID and password to gain access.

To respect the finalists’ desire for an appropriate level of confidentiality, please review the documents electronically and do not download or forward information on to others.

A feedback survey on each finalist will be linked to the website shortly after the conclusion of each interview. We hope you will take the opportunity to share your thoughts and impressions on each candidate. 

The Rev. Arsène Brice Bado, SJ, has been selected to be Creighton University’s next holder of the Anna and Donald Waite Endowed Chair in Jesuit Education, and he will join us on campus late this fall. 

Fr. Bado has spent his life and career in conflict resolution and peace-building, putting advanced degrees in socio-anthropology, law, social ethics, and political science to use in the service of helping people in war-torn regions of Africa recover from years of displacement and uncertainty and move into stable democratic and parliamentary systems of government.

A native of the Western African nation of Burkina Faso, Fr. Bado is currently the deputy director of the Institute of Dignity and Human Rights at the Centre de Recherche et d’Action pour la Paix (CERAP) in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, where he has been working since 2016 in the promotion of democracy and electoral assistance in post-conflict settings.

Fr. Bado is a member of the Interdisciplinary Centre for Research on Africa and the Middle East (CIRAM), and a member of the Research Chair on Democracy and Parliamentary Institutions, both at Laval.

The Waite Chair in Jesuit Education was established in 2011 by Donald Waite, BSC’54, and his wife, Anna, to augment the Jesuit presence on the Creighton campus. The Chair sponsors visiting Jesuits who pursue writing, research, and teaching on law, philosophy, business ethics, health care, and more, opening doors for learning across international borders and cultural divides.

And I am pleased to announce that Paul Farmer, MD, PhD, a physician and humanitarian who has devoted his life to the care of people living in underserved rural areas around the globe, will deliver the commencement address at Creighton University’s 2017 Commencement Exercises.

Dr. Farmer is co-founder of Partners in Health, an international social justice and health organization making inroads to providing sustainable health care in developing countries. He will speak at the morning and afternoon commencement ceremonies, Saturday, May 13.

Currently the Kolokotrones University Professor at Harvard University, where he earned his medical degree and doctor of philosophy in medical anthropology, Dr. Farmer is also an attending physician and chief of the Division of Global Health Equity at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. He is also editor-in-chief of Health and Human Rights Journal and is the United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Adviser for Community-based Medicine Development and Affordability.

Among the many awards bestowed upon Dr. Farmer are the MacArthur Fellowship, the Heinz Award in the Human Condition, the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, the American Medical Association’s Dr. Nathan Davis International Award in Medicine, and the Peace Abbey Courage of Conscience Award.

In his 2003 New York Times Notable Book, Mountains Beyond Mountains, author Tracy Kidder details Farmer’s efforts at building sustainable clinical models while also working in research and advocating for democracy. The book is subtitled, The Quest of Dr. Paul Farmer, a Man Who Would Cure the World.

In so many ways, Dr. Farmer is reflective of the kind of ideals toward which we at Creighton strive as a Jesuit, Catholic institution.

In closing, I would like to congratulate coaches Greg McDermott and Jim Flanery and the men’s and women’s basketball teams for being selected to play in the NCAA Division I tournaments. The men play their first game Friday afternoon in Sacramento, Calif., against the University of Rhode Island. The women’s team plays on Friday in Corvallis, Ore., against the University of Toledo. Let’s cheer on our student-athletes as they represent Creighton during March Madness.


Rev. Daniel S. Hendrickson, SJ