External Affairs Division

Georgia Southern University President Jaimie Hebert Announces Plans to Step Down

Atlanta — May 16, 2018

Georgia Southern University President Jaimie Hebert announced today he will step down effective June 30, 2018, to pursue other opportunities. Hebert has served as president of Georgia Southern since July 1, 2016.

“Dr. Hebert is a lifelong champion of higher education and contributed significantly to the creation of the new Georgia Southern University,” said University System of Georgia (USG) Chancellor Steve Wrigley. “I thank Jaimie for his dedication and service and commend him for his staunch commitment to serving students and supporting faculty. On behalf of the University System, we wish him the very best.”

In preparation for the transition, Wrigley has named Shelley Clark Nickel as Georgia Southern’s interim president. Nickel currently serves as USG executive vice chancellor for strategy and fiscal affairs and treasurer for the Board of Regents. Nickel’s 17-year career with the USG also includes serving as interim president at Gordon State College in Barnesville, Ga.

In Nickel’s current role, she oversees strategic leadership for the University System’s 26 institutions, focusing on fiscal affairs, information technology and research and policy analysis. Among other initiatives, she has led a systemwide consolidation effort reducing the number of USG institutions from 35 to 26 and reallocating savings to the classroom to better serve students.

“Shelley’s extraordinary talents have lent themselves to almost every facet of the system, and she is well-suited to lead Georgia Southern during this important transititonal period,” said Wrigley. “She is a proven leader and will be a strong advocate for the institution, its faculty and students. Shelley’s incredible commitment to student success is a hallmark of her career, and she will serve the students of Georgia Southern well.”

Nickel’s career includes extensive experience in state government including more than 11 years in roles such as director of Georgia’s Office of Planning and Budget and president of the Georgia Student Finance Commission, which is responsible for administering the state’s scholarship, grant and loan programs including the nationally recognized HOPE Scholarship.

Nickel, a native of Pennsylvania, earned a master’s degree in Public Administration and a bachelor of science in Community Development, both from Penn State University. She is a life member of the Penn State Alumni Association and served on the College of Liberal Arts Alumni Society Board.

The University System will conduct a national search for Georgia Southern’s next president. A campus-based presidential search committee will be formed and announced. Members of the committee will include representatives from Georgia Southern faculty, staff, the student body, alumni and the community and will be appointed by Wrigley and Board of Regents Chairman James M. Hull. Nominations for the search committee should be submitted to the Board of Regents.

The campus-based presidential search committee will be responsible for the search and screening of candidates. A Regents’ Special Committee will also be formed and comprised of Board of Regents members.

At the conclusion of its work, the campus-based committee will forward the credentials of three to five unranked candidates to the Regents’ Special Committee for consideration. The Board of Regents has sole authority to appoint the next president.

« News Releases