CSU President Laura Bloomberg, Ph.D., and her alma mater, the University of Minnesota.
Credit: Eddie Krakhmalnikov, and The Cleveland Stater
Part of the University of Minnesota's historical campus.

Bloomberg may be leaving CSU, selected as finalist in UMN president search

Cleveland State's President Dr. Laura Bloomberg may disappear as suddenly as she appeared, after she announced on Friday, less than two years into her appointment, that she is one of three finalists for the presidency at the University of Minnesota.

Cleveland State University President Laura Bloomberg, Ph.D., may be leaving CSU, announcing Friday that she has been short-listed as one of the three finalists in the University of Minnesota’s search for a president.

“The UMN selection process will continue over the next two weeks,” Bloomberg said in an email to the CSU community. “Please be assured that even while I will be spending time this coming week in Minnesota, I remain singularly focused… on the important work underway right here at CSU.”

If Bloomberg is selected and accepts the position at UMN, CSU will be looking at its third president in two years, after the board abruptly removed Harlan Sands, JD, from the position in April 2022.

An interim president would lead CSU while a new president is found. Names already circulating include CSU's former president, Ronald Berkman, Ph.D., chair of CSU's law school, Lee Fisher, JD, and CSU Provost, Dr. Nigamanth Sridhar.

Bloomberg is Cleveland State's eighth president, and only second woman to hold the position. She has been instrumental in picking up on the ongoing revamp of CSU known as CSU 2.0, launched by her predecessor. She has also led CSU's response to tackling its multimillion dollar budget deficit, and learning of its 20% decline in enrolments in recent years.

Going home?

UMN is Bloomberg's alma mater.

“The University of Minnesota is where I completed my PhD,” President Bloomberg said in Friday’s email. “It is the institution that shaped me as a professional educator and where I served as a professor and dean for many years.”

Minnesota has been searching for a new president since June 2023, after their former president, Joan Gabel, left the school to serve as the chancellor of the University of Pittsburgh, with Jeffrey Martin Ettinger serving as the interim president.

UMN’s Board of Regents outlined the characteristics their search would be based on in September 2023, affirming their commitment to a “broad and diverse pool of the highest quality candidates.” Joining Bloomberg as the other two finalists for the presidency are Rebecca Cunningham, Ph.D. and James Holloway, Ph.D.

Public interviews of the finalists will begin Monday, Feb. 12. Additionally, forums and open houses with each candidate will be held on every campus in the Twin Cities university. See the full schedule here.