January 14, 2014 (Sarasota)—Arthur M. Guilford, 68, renowned regional chancellor of the University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee, has announced he will officially retire at the end of January 2015. Citing the traditional hiring cycle for higher education administrators as June to August of each year, Guilford said, “It will be helpful for me to step down from my current position at the end of July 2014. During the remaining six months I will be available for special projects and to help facilitate an easy transition for the new regional chancellor. If they need me, I will be here.”
A national search will be conducted for a new regional chancellor. Sophia Wisniewska, regional chancellor of USF St. Petersburg, has agreed to chair the search committee for Guilford’s successor.
A native Floridian, Guilford began his career at USF Tampa in 1975 as an assistant professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders. He was then Chair of the department for 15 years, and became associate dean of faculty and program development for USF Tampa’s College of Arts and Sciences in 2004, overseeing tenure, honors and awards for over 650 faculty members. In 2006, Guilford was appointed by USF President Judy Genshaft to lead the search for a new regional chancellor of USF Sarasota-Manatee. After meeting with several qualified candidates, the faculty of USFSM collectively petitioned for Guilford to be interviewed for the position and he was appointed regional chancellor in 2007.
During Guilford’s tenure, USF Sarasota-Manatee has matured and prospered. Among his many visionary accomplishments are attainment of separate accreditation for USFSM; the creation of a learning center in North Port; development of a robust general education program and recruitment of the institution’s first freshman class into a four-year program; launching of the College of Hospitality & Technology Leadership’s Culinary Innovation Lab in Lakewood Ranch; and a unique Biology degree and science labs in partnership with Mote Marine that are emblematic of the University’s response to emerging community needs. Since 2007, the number of degrees awarded by USFSM has increased by 18 percent. The College of Education’s innovative Center for Partnerships in Arts Integrated Teaching (PAINT) and the establishment of USFSM’s first athletic team—the only collegiate crew club in Sarasota and Manatee counties—are further legacies of Guilford’s leadership.
USF President Judy Genshaft said, “The University of South Florida System is deeply appreciative of Arthur Guilford’s leadership at USF Sarasota-Manatee. He has been a valued part of USF for almost four decades and a highly respected leader of a great team for the past seven years. I know that the entire Sarasota-Manatee community joins me in wishing him and his wife, Lynn, every happiness in retirement.”
As Guilford approaches retirement, he looks back on his time at USFSM with great affection.
“The past 38 years with USF and my seven years at the helm of USFSM have been a time of rewarding change, growth and improvement of our regional presence,” Guilford said. “I have very much enjoyed my tenure with the University and celebrate the meaningful partnerships we have forged with other institutions of higher learning in the area, as well as the Perlman Music Program, Lifelong Learning Academy and community leaders. Our outstanding faculty, staff and students have accomplished a great deal and I am confident that USF Sarasota-Manatee will continue to develop and thrive. I look forward to observing that growth and the continuance of a high standard of excellence from the vantage point of retirement with my wife, Lynn.”
The Guilfords will remain active in the Sarasota-Manatee community and plan to divide their time between their primary residence in Sarasota and a vacation home in Cashiers, North Carolina. They will enjoy spending more time with their two children and six grandchildren.
About USF Sarasota-Manatee (USFSM)
USF Sarasota-Manatee is a regional campus of the University of South Florida system, offering the prestige of a nationally ranked research university with the convenience of a hometown location, including classes in North Port and Manatee County. USFM is ideal for those interested in pursuing a baccalaureate or master’s degree, professional certification, or continuing education credit in a small, personal setting with distinguished faculty and a dynamic curriculum of over 40 academic programs.