Agee, Messick move up

Amye Buckley

As Dr. Bruce Speck prepares to take the reins at Missouri Southern and Dr. Terri Agee prepares to step down from her temporary presidency, other roles within the organization are changing.

When Speck was announced as president, Agee and Dr. John Messick were announced as part of his leadership team. Agee is moving from her role as acting president to senior vice president when Speck arrives on Feb. 4.

“I’ll be working really closely with the new president and giving him 110 percent of my support,” Agee said. “I’ll still be overseeing business affairs of the University.”

Rob Yust has been appointed assistant vice president for business affairs and Linda Eis will continue as treasurer.

Messick will move from dean of the school of arts and sciences to vice president for academic affairs when Dr. Richard McCallum leaves for North Dakota later this spring to assume his new position as president of Dickinson State University. Messick said McCallum is helping him train for his new responsibilities.

“He already has started working with me on a smooth transition,” Messick said. “He is certainly making it easier in terms of explaining changes and things that need to be done.”

McCallum, one of the architects of reports prepared for the Higher Learning Commission visit, will remain in his position until after visit scheduled for April 1. Agee says McCallum has made a special effort to keep things moving.

“We appreciate his commitment to the process,” she said.

Messick will have help with student matters as Dr. Richard Miller takes on the position of assistant to the dean of the school of arts and sciences. The position was approved in the fall, but Miller’s appointment was announced Jan. 22.

“I’m excited,” Miller said. “This is a wonderful opportunity to serve our students in another capacity.”

Miller will continue as department head of Social Science until the end of the semester, and will maintain an office there. As assistant dean, he will handle student issues like academic petitions, graduations checks and mediate any student/faculty conflicts for arts and sciences. Although Miller will be assisting Messick in his responsibilities, a new dean will be appointed.

“We will be selecting or appointing a new dean or an interim dean at some point,” Messick said “But realistically that can’t happen right away.”

As for Agee, she will continue her expanded involvement in campus affairs after stepping down from the president’s office.

“I’m going to continue to stay actively involved in fundraising efforts,” she said. “I’ll be more active in community organizations. I also will be staying involved in the political process and continuing to promote Missouri Southern among the legislature, communicating the needs of Southern and promoting the excellent educational opportunities that we offer.”

After Speck’s arrival, Agee will return to her former office. Her responsibilities will change, but she still has a full plate.

“We’ve got a million things going on right now so we won’t lack for anything to do, that’s for sure,” Agee said.

Dual construction projects and the HLC visit top her list after she passes the baton to Speck.

“I think he’s anxious to hit the ground running so whatever I can do to help in that respect then I certainly will,” she said.