USF announces five more members of consolidation task force

University of South Florida students are seen walking around campus at USF on Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018, in Tampa, Fla.
University of South Florida students are seen walking around campus at USF on Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018, in Tampa, Fla.
Published April 9 2018

University of South Florida officials announced on Monday the appointment of five more members to task force that will help guide the impending USF consolidation.

Under a law passed last month, USF board of trustees Chair Brian Lamb chose two members, and the leaders of the USF St. Petersburg and USF Sarasota-Manatee campuses each chose one. The USF Alumni Association also appointed a member.

They are:

Anddrikk Frazier, managing partner of Integral Energy (appointed by Lamb). Frazier attended USF, playing men's basketball and studying engineering. He is a founding member of the USF Black Leadership Network and has two decades of experience in the energy business.

Michael "Mike" Griffin, senior managing director for Savills Studley Occupier Services (by Lamb). A two-time student body president at USF, Griffin studied business administration. He has led the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce.

Melissa Seixas, vice president, government and community relations for Duke Energy (by USF St. Petersburg chair Stephanie Goforth). Seixas got a master's degree in history from USF and was co-chair of USFSP's 50th anniversary celebration in 2015-16. She is board chair of the St. Pete Downtown Partnership.

Frederick "Rick" Piccolo, president and CEO of Sarasota Bradenton International Airport (by USF Sarasota-Manatee chair Byron Shinn). Piccolo was recently selected to join the Sarasota campus board. He once led the Greater Sarasota Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors.

Kayla Rykiel, USF Honors College student in biomedical sciences (by the USF Alumni Association). Rykiel founded Partners in Health, a USF student organization, and leads TEDxUSF. She's worked on research related to infectious diseases, drug development and food insecurity.

Leading the task force will be Dr. Jonathan Ellen, president and vice dean of Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg.

The other members are USF System President Judy Genshaft, USFSP Interim Regional Chancellor Martin Tadlock and USFSM Regional Chancellor Karen Holbook.

Lastly, the Florida Senate President and Speaker of the House will each tap two members.

The group will develop recommendations by mid-February of next year to guide USF leaders as the separate accreditations at USFSP and USFSM are phased out. Their work will cover a broad scope, from new degree programs to faculty engagement to research and support for students.

"These appointments include proven community leaders from a variety of different fields, who have a vested interest in the success of USF and understand the university's importance to the future of the Tampa Bay region," Ellen said in a news release.

The group's first meeting is slated for 4 p.m. on April 25 at the USF St. Petersburg Student Center. This fall, students and faculty will be invited to town hall meetings.

Once the task force recommendations are in, the USF Board of Trustees has a March 15, 2019 deadline to send an implementation plan to state higher education leaders. By July 1, 2020, USF will be operating under one unified accreditation.

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