TAMPA, Fla. (March 4, 2022) – Two candidates seeking to become the eighth president in University of South Florida history are moving forward in the search process. Today, the USF Presidential Search Committee interviewed Interim President Rhea Law and Lt. Gen. Jeffrey Talley and voted to advance both candidates to the next round, which includes visits on each of USF’s three campuses, followed by interviews with the USF Board of Trustees (BOT). The exact schedule of these events will be announced as soon as details are confirmed.
The campus visits will give members of the USF community an opportunity to interact with each candidate and provide another way for BOT members to collect public input prior to their interviews.
Following each session, participants will be able to share feedback via an online portal, which will be available on the Presidential Search website. This feedback will be reviewed by the BOT.
Below are bios for each candidate:
Rhea Law’s leadership experiences and qualifications are numerous and diverse. A USF alumna, she is the former chief executive officer and chair of the board of Fowler White Boggs, a Florida law firm. She led the merger of Fowler with a national firm, Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney, in 2014. She is one of the founding members of the USF Board of Trustees, where she spent five years as vice chair and four years as the first and only female chair.
She is also a founding member of the Board of Directors of the USF Law Alumni Society, served as a member of the USF Research Foundation Board and was named a 2018 Distinguished Alumna by the USF Alumni Association. She chaired the Board of Directors for the Health Professions Conferencing Corporation with the USF Center for Advanced Medical Learning and Simulation (CAMLS). In 2018 she was inducted as an honorary member of the USF Chapter of the National Academy of Inventors in recognition of her support of research and innovation at USF. In 2013, she was granted an Honorary Doctor of Medicine Degree from the USF Morsani College of Medicine. She formerly served on the Board of Directors for the Tampa Bay Technology Forum and the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute Board of Directors and currently serves on Moffitt’s National Advisory Board.
Law earned her undergraduate degree in management from USF, putting herself through school while working as the university research project administrator for the Office of Sponsored Research. She then earned her terminal degree in law at Stetson University College of Law, where she later served as chair of their Board of Overseers, helping to select both a dean of the College of Law and president of the university.
Lt. Gen. Jeffrey Talley (U.S. Army, Ret.)
Lt. Gen. Talley is a senior executive with experience in military, academic, corporate and government positions. He has experience in large-scale organizations, public-private partnerships, national and cybersecurity, environmental and energy sustainability, disaster emergency management, infrastructure resilience, data analytics and technology, R&D and higher education.
He currently serves as a member of the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition based in Washington D.C., an organization that works to strengthen tools of national security. He also serves as president and CEO of The Public Private Partnership Initiatives (P3i) Group, a management consulting firm for government, business, not-for-profit and academia. His military career included duty in the United States, Korea, Kuwait and Iraq. His service culminated in 2012 when he was appointed to the rank of lieutenant general and to a four-year term as the 32nd chief of Army Reserve and seventh commanding general of the U.S. Army Reserve Command – an organization of over 215,000 soldiers and civilians and 134 general officers and executives, with an annual operating budget of $9 billion, and activities in over 30 countries, including all states and territories. He has received numerous medals and awards, including two Army Distinguished Medals and three Bronze Star Medals. He retired from the military in 2016 and was recognized by the U.S. Senate on June 28, 2016, with “Tribute to Lieutenant General Jeffrey W. Talley”, as reflected in the congressional record.
Talley holds a Ph.D. (Civil and Environmental Engineering) from Carnegie Mellon University, an Executive M.B.A. from the University of Oxford, an M.S.E. (Environmental Engineering and Science) from The Johns Hopkins University, an M.L.A. (Liberal Arts – History/Philosophy) from Washington University in St. Louis, an M.S.S. (Strategic Studies) from the U.S. Army War College, an M.A. (Religious Studies) from Assumption College, and a B.S. (Forestry – Natural Resource Management) from Louisiana State University. He is a registered Professional Engineer (P.E.), a Board-Certified Environmental Engineer (BCEE) in Sustainability, and a Diplomate, Water Resources Engineer (D.WRE).
About the University of South Florida
The University of South Florida, a high-impact global research university dedicated to student success, generates an annual economic impact of more than $6 billion. Over the past 10 years, no other public university in the country has risen faster in U.S. News and World Report’s national university rankings than USF. Serving more than 50,000 students on campuses in Tampa, St. Petersburg and Sarasota-Manatee, USF is designated as a Preeminent State Research University by the Florida Board of Governors, placing it in the most elite category among the state’s 12 public universities. USF has earned widespread national recognition for its success graduating under-represented minority and limited-income students at rates equal to or higher than white and higher income students. USF is a member of the American Athletic Conference. Learn more at www.usf.edu.