UPDATE on NSHE Searches for Chancellor and UNLV & UNR President

LAS VEGAS –The Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE) Board of Regents will consider extending the contracts of NSHE Chancellor Thom Reilly and UNLV President Marta Meana to December 2020. The Board of Regents will also work to identify a candidate to serve as Acting President of UNR. President Marc Johnson is unavailable to continue serving through the summer.

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the delay of the ongoing NSHE Chancellor and UNLV and UNR President searches, the Board of Regents leadership is seeking continuity in these key leadership positions, said Regents Chair Jason Geddes.

These contract extensions and appointing an acting president must be approved by the Board of Regents, who are planning an emergency meeting April 7, 2020 that will follow the new directive for public meetings from Gov. Sisolak. An agenda for the meeting has been posted.

“We have delayed the current searches to ensure an open and transparent process with full involvement of the campus and community constituencies and in consideration for the health and well-being of all those involved,” said Geddes. “It is also important to have stability in these key leadership positions during this distressing time. I want to thank Chancellor Reilly for his leadership during the pandemic and his willingness to continue on through December.”

Geddes added that once a permanent Chancellor is found, Chancellor Reilly will serve in an advisory role.

At the upcoming meeting, the Regents will consider performing the Chancellor search in June and the UNLV and UNR searches in September.

Chancellor Reilly said these decisions have been made in consultation with the search committee chairs, search consultants, and faculty, staff, and student leaders.

“I am thankful to President Meana and President Johnson and all of our institution presidents, who have shown remarkable leadership as we’ve navigated this tumultuous and unprecedented event,” Reilly said. “Nevada’s public higher education will return to a sense of normalcy and we must plan for that eventuality, which includes continuing these searches at a later time.”

NSHE System Administration will continue to work collaboratively with the Office of Governor Sisolak and all county, state, and federal health officials regarding COVID-19. The health and wellbeing of Nevada’s public higher education community continues to be NSHE’s utmost priority in this developing situation.


The Nevada System of Higher Education, comprised of two doctoral-granting universities, a state college, four comprehensive community colleges and one environmental research institute, serves the educational and job training needs of Nevada. NSHE provides educational opportunities to more than 100,000 students and is governed by the Board of Regents.