Search Begins for Pennsylvania State University’s Vice President and General Counsel


University Park, Pennsylvania — Pennsylvania State University has launched a nationwide search for the next vice president and general counsel. As the University’s Chief Legal Officer, Vice President and General Counsel oversees the complexities of research, education and outreach, athletics and medical operations at Pennsylvania State University, which has more than 88,000 students and over 35,000 students and part-timers. We oversee a broad portfolio that reflects our Time employees across 24 campuses.

Frank Guadagnino, formerly vice president of administration, has been serving as interim vice president and general counsel since October 2022. Mr. Guadagnino will serve during the transition to permanent appointment and will retire after nine years as a dedicated and insightful leader. Strategic guidance to legal counsel and universities.

The new Vice Chancellor and General Counsel will report directly to the Chancellor and the Board of Trustees, serve as Senior Advisor and member of the Chancellor’s Council, and head the Office of the General Counsel, which oversees all legal matters at the University. We also formally support the board, president, administration, and faculty on issues affecting Pennsylvania State University.

“We are seeking a talented senior legal executive to serve as the university’s next vice president and general counsel,” said Pennsylvania State University President Neeri Vendapdi. “As strategic thinkers with a deep understanding of the laws and issues that affect a complex institution like Penn State University, our ideal candidate will be a driving force behind student and employee success, academic and research achievements. We support inclusive excellence as the foundation of our mission, and our commitment to serving our communities, across the Commonwealth.”

The university is partnering with Korn Ferry, a global organizational consultancy, to explore. Board Executive Secretary and Secretary Shannon Harvey and Vice President of Human Resources Jennifer Wilkes will serve as co-chairs with the assistance of an investigative committee that includes:

  • Cathy Bieschke, Vice President for Academic Affairs

  • Holly Klein, Associate General Counselor

  • Shannon Harvey, Director and Board Secretary

  • Judy Flafsack, Interim General Counsel and Chief of Staff, Pennsylvania Department of Health

  • Terra Ingram, Administrative Coordinator of the Institute for Sustainable Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences (SAFES) and Chair of the University Staff Advisory Board

  • Pat Kraft, Deputy Director of Intercollegiate Track and Field

  • Bill Rabb, Director of Risk Management and Chief Risk Officer

  • Clinton Schmidt, Senior Director, Research Security and Conflicts of Interest

  • Michael Wade Smith, Senior Vice President and Chief of Staff

  • Michelle Stein, Professor of Education in Biobehavioral Health, President of the University Senate

  • Sara Thorndike, Senior Vice President of Finance and Business/Treasurer

  • Jennifer Wilkes, Vice President of Human Resources

The mission of the Office of General Counsel is to provide the university with the highest quality legal services and to protect and promote Penn State University’s mission and values, including integrity and ethical conduct, diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging. That’s it.

Based in both University Park and the Pennsylvania State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center and College of Medicine in Hershey, our team of attorneys develops university policy. Interpret and comply with rules and guidelines regarding University activities that affect compliance with federal and state laws and regulations. Oversees the hiring of outside counsel as needed. It also collaborates with various offices within the university, such as the Risk Management Office and the Affirmative Action Office.

The Vice Chancellor and General Counsel oversee, among other things, the Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer and the Office of Ethics and Compliance to maintain the University’s comprehensive compliance program, including risk assessments, hotline and investigation management, and compliance-related training. To do. The Legal Department and the Ethics and Compliance Department work together to support and promote the improvement of the university-wide compliance program.

Candidates must have a Juris Doctor degree from a law school accredited by the American Bar Association, be a member in good standing of the bar association of the state in which they serve, and be eligible for such status in the State of Pennsylvania. must be

To inquire about the application and nomination process, please contact Korn Ferry at PSU-VPGC@kornferry.com. Applications, including resumes and letters of interest, are requested by May 24th.



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