Presidential Search

November 29: 17th President of Hastings College Announced

On June 1, 2017, Hastings College will start a new era as Dr. Travis Feezell becomes the College’s 17th President. The Hastings College Board of Trustees appointed Feezell, who currently serves as Provost and Chief Academic Officer at University of the Ozarks in Clarksville, Arkansas, to the position following a national search. Don Jackson, the current president, will retire at the end of the academic year after four and a half years in the office.

“When the presidential search committee began its search in July 2016, we sought a candidate who would embody the core of Hastings College’s mission and have the capacity to move the College forward to meet future students’ needs. Dr. Feezell is that candidate,” said Glen Moss, a 1974 Hastings College alumnus who serves as Chair of both the Board of Trustees and the Presidential Search Committee. “He believes in the value a Hastings College education can provide its students through outstanding classroom teaching and deliberate mentoring.”

“The opportunity to serve as President of Hastings College is a special calling,” said Dr. Feezell. “I believe deeply in the impact of a residential liberal arts education and Hastings College is a model for that powerful experience. I am especially grateful for the opportunity to return to Nebraska and to lead an institution filled with so many talented and committed people. I knew Hastings was special when I applied but I am even more convinced about the unique place of this institution as a national leader in the future. I especially want to thank the Search Committee and the Board of Trustees for this opportunity but want also to thank President Jackson for his leadership and service over the past years. I and others will be the beneficiaries of the good work that has come before us.”

For the full news release, click here.

November 1 Update

From a strong applicant pool of 56 applicants from 25 states, the Hastings College Presidential Search Committee has narrowed the search to four candidates. These candidates have been invited for campus visits in Hastings between November 7 and 18. While on campus, the candidates will meet with students, faculty, staff, trustees and community members.

The candidates, in alphabetical order, are:

  • Dr. Robert C. (Bob) Beatty is Dean of the Lutgert College of Business at Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers, Florida. 
  • Dr. Steven Combs is Provost of Drury University in Springfield, Missouri.
  • Dr. Travis R. Feezell is Provost and Chief Academic Officer at the University of the Ozarks in Clarksville, Arkansas.
  • Dr. Neal R. Weaver serves as Vice President for Advancement and Innovation at Nicholls State University in Thibodaux, Louisiana.

For more details on each of these candidates, including when they will be on campus, please see this news release.

Mid-October Update

The search committee for Hastings College's 17th President has worked quickly to assess and narrow the applicant field to eight candidates following the September 20 application deadline. The field began with 56 candidates from 25 states. Through several assessments, the committee narrowed the field to eight candidates.

Having a strong applicant pool is an incredible testament to Hastings College, and the College are very appreciative to everyone who applied. 

The next step of the process is for the committee to conduct off-campus interviews with the eight candidates yet this month. Then two to four final candidates will be invited to campus for additional interviews, including opportunities to meet with students, faculty and staff. The names and credentials of the candidates participating in on-campus interviews will be shared in advance. 

For additional information, Glen Moss '74, chair of the presidential search committee, spoke at length with the Hastings Tribune about the process and next steps.

A Letter from the Committee Chair

Dear Hastings College community,

The search for the 17th President of Hastings College is underway. In June 2016, Don Jackson ’70, announced he would retire as president of the College at the end of the 2016-17 academic year. During his tenure, President Jackson has implemented a variety of infrastructure projects, guided the College through a successful accreditation review, and launched a program prioritization process. The Board of Trustees is grateful for his successful service and outstanding leadership.

My colleagues on the five-person search committee, including other Trustees, a faculty member, and a student, have the responsibility to help the Board of Trustees identify the next leader of this proud institution. We believe Hastings College has a great foundation and are seeking a new president who can build on the foundation.  

In addition to having earned a doctorate, a comparable terminal degree, or the equivalent combination of education and experience, a successful presidential candidate will be:

  • Bold in leading students, faculty, and staff as the College builds new academic and non-academic programs necessary to distinguish the College;
  • Effective in solidifying the College’s financial future through careful fiscal management and fundraising;
  • Enthusiastic in fostering a supportive campus culture in which students, faculty, and staff can thrive; and
  • Collaborative in working with the Board of Trustees and campus community, and engaging alumni, the surrounding community, and friends of the College to provide outstanding opportunities for our students.

Momentum for change on campus is growing, and a new president certainly will have opportunities to make a lasting impact on Hastings College.

If you would like to apply for the position or wish to nominate a candidate, please review the presidential profile. For most favorable consideration, candidates should submit their application (letter of interest, curriculum vitae, and contact information for three references) by September 20, 2016, to Dr. Robert C. Dickeson, Search Consultant, at References will be contacted only with permission.

On behalf of my colleagues on the search committee, thank you for your interest in Hastings College and its future leadership.


Glen Moss ’74
Chair of the Hastings College Presidential Search Committee
Chair of the Board of Trustees