Southern Utah University names Mindy Benson as 17th president

Mindy Benson, Southern Utah University President. Photo: SUU

CEDAR CITY, Utah, July 17, 2022 (Gephardt Daily) — After a national search, the Utah Board of Higher Education selected Mindy Benson as the 17th president of Southern Utah University.

Benson had served as interim president since the July 2021 departure of Scott L. Wyatt, who had held the position since January 2014.

Gov. Spencer Cox was among those to congratulate Benson on her appointment.

“The right choice from the very beginning,” Cox tweeted. “With 3 (!) kids attending this fall our family could not be more excited. Congratulations President Benson!”

Before assuming the role of interim president last year, Benson served as vice president of Alumni and Community Relations at SUU for eight years. Along with her leadership responsibilities, Benson has taught courses on campus for 14 years.

“I am deeply humbled and honored to be selected by the Utah Board of Higher Education as the next president of Southern Utah University,” she said in a prepared statement. “I’m thrilled to serve in this leadership role and continue working with our extraordinary faculty, staff, students, community and alumni. SUU is a remarkable place built on 125 years of transformative educational experiences and community partnership. I’m so grateful to those who came before and am excited to be a part of SUU’s bright future.”

The appointment came after a national search team and a 21-member search committee solicited more than 40 applications. Benson was one of three finalists announced on July 7.

Vice board chair Jesselie Anderson praised Benson:

“Under Mindy Benson’s leadership, Southern Utah University will continue to be known regionally and statewide as it produces successful graduates for Utah’s talent force. As part of our process, we heard from campus members and the community, who were deeply invested in finding a committed, compassionate and collaborative leader.

“I believe President Benson’s wide-ranging institutional knowledge and southern Utah connections make her an exceptional choice to lead the university in the years to come.”

Rich Christiansen, Utah Board of Higher Education Member and search committee co-chair, called Benson “a unifier, and her deep commitment and interest in this community and campus does not go unnoticed. We received overwhelming support from the faculty, staff, students, community and alumni for her permanent appointment.”


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