The Presidential Cabinet: Guilford’s most valuable players

The clock ticks down to zero; the time to deliver has come. Presentations. Financial standings. The board of trustees are visiting. Are we up to date on our proposals? Where are my files? I cannot be late today, this meeting is too important. I hope everything is okay at Guilford College.

This is the daily frantic life of 10 people at Guilford — the members of the Presidential Cabinet.

From creating the cabinet to learning about Guilford culture, President Jane Fernandes is working quickly to adjust to her new role.

“My goal is to learn as much as possible about Guilford and understand the strengths of (the College) while making a plan to address the areas we need to improve,” said Fernandes. “I do not think there (are) going to be dramatic changes, but we will get better at communication and letting employers know why this education is worth investing in.”

 

Attached are a few short profiles of Guilford’s Presidential Cabinet members. (Not pictured: Chief Planning and Senior Management Officer Jeff Favolise and Executive Associate to the President Joyce Eaton)

Jennifer Agor


“I would like to continue to build relationships and understanding between Campus Life and the student body,” said Interim Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students Jennifer Agor in an email interview. “The current cabinet is looking forward, examining new ideas, looking for solutions, identifying needs and embracing and celebrating Guilford as the great place that it is.”Agor enjoys running, kickball league and home improvement.

Ty Buckner


“At the very top of the list for Communications and Marketing is determining the most effective way of telling the Guilford story to benefit student recruitment and our fundraising,” said Associate Vice President for Communications and Marketing Ty Buckner.  “Guilford is a wonderful place, and our goal is to work with Jane to make Guilford the best (it can possibly be).”Buckner loves to sing in a church choir, read, exercise and visit family members.

Adrienne Israel


“My main goal during this transition period for the president is to help Jane meet as many faculty as possible and help her become familiarized with our strengths and challenges,” said Vice President for Academic Affairs and Academic Dean Adrienne Israel. “Continuing to grow and attract new students and provide resources to the programs currently at Guilford is the foremost task I would like to address.”Israel enjoys finishing puzzles, bowling and taking nature walks.Mike Poston


“Our goal is to continue to build and reaffirm a culture of philanthropy for the College,” said Vice President for Advancement Mike Poston. “Leadership is being redefined all across higher education, and Jane needs to be dynamic and reshape Guilford. I think Jane is going to do just that while bringing the mission of Guilford into clearer focus.”Poston loves attending car shows, gardening and visiting his granddaughters.Andy Strickler


“Helping craft the right kind of community here that brings forward the spirit of Guilford College and the values we have is currently our main goal,” said Dean of Admission and Financial Aid Andy Strickler. “We want to enroll the right number of students, but we also want to enroll the right kinds of students — students that are going to thrive and cherish their Guilford experience.”Strickler is an avid sports fan who enjoys running, golfing and playing with his puppy.Jonathan Varnell


“Supporting all of the various areas I work with to help us achieve excellence with what resources we do have is certainly the core of my goal,” said Vice President for Administration Jonathan Varnell in an email interview. “Although there are clearly differences from the previous cabinet, everyone brings different strengths to the job, so I’m excited to see how this will play out.”Varnell appreciates gardening, landscape, hiking, camping and playing basketball and guitar.Jimmy Wilson


“My primary goal is to support the president as she works to improve and strengthen Guilford, our academic programs and our finances,” said Interim Vice President for Finance Jimmy Wilson in an email interview.  “The makeup of the cabinet is a bit different than under Kent.  It’s actually smaller. However, even though some plans for this cabinet may change from Kent’s, the goal will not.”Wilson likes traveling, water sports and swing dancing.