TUSCALOOSA, Alabama -- The University of Alabama Board of Trustees selected Guy Bailey the new president of the institution during an open interview at Bryant Conference Center this morning.
"It's hard for me to express the joy and happiness of this moment," Bailey said moments after trustees voted. "I hope our next 10 years will be as good as our last 10."
Board of Trustees members sat in front of a packed house at the public interview of the Bailey, who had been president of Texas Tech University. Board of Trustees member and chair of search committee Karen Brooks and UA System Chancellor Robert E. Witt made some opening statements about the recruitment of Bailey.
"If the board appoints Guy Bailey president, the University of Alabama will be in very good hands," Witt said.
Brooks said the field of candidates started at 100 before the search committee narrowed it down to 40 and then nine. UA contacted those nine and seven showed interest. A subcommittee of Witt, Provost Judy Bonner and Brian St. John whittled that number down to five candidates.
Brooks said all five were smart, capable and impressive, but one stood out even more.
"One person that was the best and he rose to the top awfully quick, and he stayed there," she said, noting that they interviewed him first. "We never forgot about Guy Bailey."
After Bailey made a statement, trustees then asked Bailey a series of questions regarding athletics, student enrollment, research and fund-raising.
Once the Q&A ended, the board immediately moved to choose Bailey as the new president.
Bailey is a Montgomery native who was named president of Texas Tech in 2008. The Birmingham News reported that campus has grown significantly in size and stature since his arrival, including major new research partnerships with public and private entities.
Bailey received his bachelor's and master's degree in English from UA. He attended UA from 1968 to 1974, according to the UA System Chancellor's office.