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Former Naval Academy superintendent could be University of Nebraska president

Vice Adm. Walter Carter, now retired, has been selected as a candidate to be the next president of the University of Nebraska.

U.S. NAVY

By SELENE SAN FELICE | The Capital, Annapolis, Md. | Published: October 26, 2019

(Tribune News Service) — The University of Nebraska board of regents unanimously voted Friday to make Retired Vice Adm. Walter Carter a priority candidate to be the next university president.

Carter, 60, was the Naval Academy's longest-serving superintendent from 2014 until this summer. He directed all aspects of the Naval Academy, including the training and education of 4,400 midshipmen and the management of 1,500 faculty and staff members and a $500 million budget.

In his time at the academy, Carter formed the country's first accredited cyber operations major and accredited a nuclear engineering major. He also changed the Navy's approach to suicide and mental health issues by creating the 21st Century Sailor program.

Carter spoke at a press conference at the university Friday evening. He learned of the position four weeks ago and after learning what the university was looking for, nine pillars that the search committee thought would define the ideal candidate, he decided to apply.

"I looked at the nine pillars and thought this might be a fit for me," he said. "And we could not be happier to be here with you."

"Ultimately the goal is to take the wonderful work that has been done and take it to a higher level, to raise the level of the brand."

By focusing on the student as a customer rather than a product, he hopes to encourage more Nebraskans to come to the university and to take what they learn back to communities in the state to meet the future.

Carter is a Naval Academy graduate and formerly served as the 54th Naval War College president. After graduating as a flight officer from TOPGUN, he flew on 125 combat missions including in Bosnia, Kuwait, Kosovo, Iraq and Afghanistan.

The university's board of regents appointed a presidential search advisory committee that guide the search for the school's president. He will now travel Nebraska for a 30-day public review, where state residents can talk to him and ask questions. The board of regents will then vote to finalize his appointment as the eighth president of the university.

According to a release from the University of Nebraska, Jim Pillen, who is on the board of regents and chairs of the presidential search committee, was impressed by Carter's character and integrity.

"He has a proven focus on the success and well-being of students, faculty and staff. He has a deep appreciation for the role and mission of higher education. And he is a public servant in every sense of the word," Pillen said in the release. "I'm pinching myself that we have an opportunity to bring someone with Ted's credentials and caliber to the University of Nebraska."

The University of Nebraska has 51,000 students across four campuses. Carter would be succeeding the university's former president Hank Bounds, who announced in March that he was stepping down to transition to other educational and consulting work after four years at the University.

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