Awkward: Candidate interviews at University of Montana with India job in pocket

A finalist to head the University of Montana’s Mansfield Center has already been named dean at another university — in India.

“That was news to me, and it was a bit of a surprise,” said search committee chair Tom DeLuca on Thursday, when informed by the Missoulian. 

The Maureen and Mike Mansfield Center runs a wide range of international programming at UM, much of it funded by the U.S. State Department. Its former executive director stepped down in November 2018.

Provost Jon Harbor tasked a search committee with finding a replacement, and now it’s down to two finalists: Deena Mansour, a 10-year Mansfield Center employee who currently serves as interim director, and Kenneth Holland, who has served since the 1970s as both professor and administrator at universities throughout the United States, Canada and Asia, most recently as president of the financially troubled American University of Afghanistan. 

Asked about the dean appointment at O.P. Jindal on Thursday, Holland said, “I certainly intend to take the job if nothing more desirable comes up. … I have applied to a number of positions, and the search process is continuing.” 

At UM, a 12-member committee

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