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Earlier this month it was announced that Randy Spetman was out as Florida State's athletic director. Shortly thereafter FSU president Eric Barron indicated that the search for a replacement would start in earnest beginning with the hiring of an independent search firm and the appointment of an advisory committee.
The first step in the process is just about wrapped up.
"We are just about to sign a contract with a search firm," Barron told Warchant.com on Tuesday. "We interviewed search firms between Friday and Monday so we could get a sense of what they could do at what cost."
Barron declined to disclose the name of the firm until the contract was signed. However, there were no such limitations on the naming of the advisory committee.
"We have formed the advisory committee," said Barron. "I called the last person and got their agreement late (Tuesday) afternoon."
That advisory committee will be made up of the following 10 members:
Pam Perrewe- Distinguished Research Professor (Management) at Florida State.
Joe Gruters - Member of FSU's Board of Trustees. Also a CPA with Shinn and Company LLC in Bradenton and the chairman of the Republican Party of Sarasota.
William Russell Morcom - Tallahassee native on FSU's Foundation Board of Trustees
Allen Durham - Durham family started the tradition of Osceola and Renegade. Allen served as "Osceola" from 1992-94. He is currently the president and CEO of Star & Shield Group, a provider of insurance.
Nylah Thompson - A member of the Seminole Boosters Executive Committee.
Bernie Waxman - Associate Athletics Director for Facility Planning at FSU. Has worked in FSU's Athletics Department for 21 years.
Maxine Jones - Professor of History at FSU.
Karen Laughlin - Dean of Undergraduate Studies and Associate Professor of English at FSU.
Elizabeth Ichite - A sprinter on FSU's Track & Field team.
Andy Haggard - Prominent South Florida attorney and former chair of FSU's Board of Trustees. Currently a sitting member on FSU's Board of Trustees.
With the help of the search firm and advisory committee Barron is optimistic that his new athletic director will be in place by the time the fall athletic calendar gets underway.
"I fully expect to," said Barron of having the new AD hired by the end of the summer. "All of the search firms have a relatively short process that's in the neighborhood of two months... Literally if you have your name out there it's all over at your own school if you are not careful. They move very quickly.
"The committee's first task will be to put down a list of characteristics they want to see in the AD. And my Board of Trustees has already come up with their list and the search advisory group will do the same."
Barron insists that he hasn't yet spoken to any candidates about the athletic director opening.
"I really have not had any kind of conversation," he said. "Every conversation I've had is about starting the search and search firms that do this kind of business... I have not spoken to anybody about the job as a candidate."
Vanessa Fuchs, the former Senior Associate Athletic Director, will continue to serve as FSU's interim athletic director until a full-time replacement is hired.