For years, her name has been linked to possible political positions. Instead, Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin will be announced as President of Augustana University.

The announcement arrived just after 5:00 PM on Wednesday (February 22) that the Augustana Board of Trustees had made their choice. Herseth-Sandlin is best known for serving as South Dakota's lone member in the U.S. House of Representatives from 2004-11.

Herseth Sandlin will be Augustana’s 24th President, taking over for Rob Oliver who will leave his position on July 31, 2017. Oliver has spent a total of 25 years with AU, eleven as President.

According to a statement from Augustana, it will be the first time in the school’s 157-year history that a woman will serve as president. Most recently, Herseth-Sandlin has been serving as general counsel and vice president of corporate development for Raven Industries in Sioux Falls.

The announcement came after the Augustana Board of Trustees conducted a nationwide search for their new leader. Further details will be revealed at an event in the Edith Mortensen Center Theatre.

Below is the letter from the Board of Trustees:

Dear Fellow Vikings,

On behalf of the Presidential Search Committee, and with a deep sense of gratitude for their work, I’m honored to inform you that the Augustana Board of Trustees has selected former congresswoman Stephanie Herseth Sandlin to serve as the 24th president of Augustana University.

Stephanie Herseth Sandlin will be introduced as our next president during a news conference at 10 a.m. on Thursday, Feb. 23, in the Edith Mortenson Center Theatre on campus.

Please visit and watch our social media channels Thursday beginning at 10 a.m. for continuing coverage of this exciting event.

Thank you for your continued prayers during our presidential search and please join me in celebrating and congratulating Stephanie and welcoming her and her family to the AU community.


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