From the editorial board in today's Star Tribune:
Joan Gabel and the University of Minnesota’s Board of Regents just made top-echelon higher-ed hiring look easy. Gabel, the University of South Carolina provost chosen Dec. 5 as the sole finalist to succeed retiring President Eric Kaler, was elected to the position Tuesday with a unanimous vote and the excitement that accompanies a historic choice. She will be the institution’s first female president.
That outcome from a whirlwind three-month search process should be heartening, even to Minnesotans who don’t spring to their feet at the sound of the “Minnesota Rouser.” Gabel’s fuss-free election positions the state’s most important educational institution to reap the advantages of a smooth executive transition in the next six months. Kaler’s graceful exit and the governing board’s unanimity allow this change to be made with a maximum of good feeling.
From the Star Tribune editorial board on November 19, 2010, when the Regents selected Eric Kaler to be the U's president:
Every higher education leader in America would want to be hired the way Eric Kaler was Thursday -- unanimously and enthusiastically by the University of Minnesota Board of Regents, with barely a contrary voice from anyone who screened his candidacy to be the U's next president.
Kaler, provost of Stony Brook University in New York, wowed 'em in a packed day-and-a-half of meetings with university constituencies. Though he was one of four semifinalists selected by a search panel for the post being vacated by retiring President Robert Bruininks, he was the only finalist identified and invited for public interviews. While open screening of other candidates would have been more in keeping with the spirit of state law, it's hard to imagine that it would have given a new presidency a stronger springboard.