TAMPA, Fla. — The University of South Florida has named two finalists for its presidential post.

Interim President Rhea Law and Lt. Gen. Jeffrey Talley are the finalists after the search started with 18 applicants.

What You Need To Know

  • USF presidential search down to 2 candidates 

  • Interim USF President Rhea Law and Lt. Gen. Jeffrey Talley are the finalists

  • Rhea and Talley both interviewing on campus on Friday 

Both Law and Talley are set to participate in in-person interviews on Friday on the USF Tampa campus. 

Following the interviews, the search committee will evaluate each candidate and may recommend candidates for further evaluation and interview by the Board of Trustees.

The Board will evaluate any finalists and may then name the next president, subject to confirmation by the Florida Board of Governors.

Law is a USF alumna and is the former chief executive officer and chair of the board of Fowler White Boggs, a Florida law firm.

Law, 72, earned her undergraduate degree in management from USF, putting herself through school while working as the university research project administrator for the Office of Sponsored Research. She then earned her terminal degree in law at Stetson University College of Law, where she later served as chair of their Board of Overseers, helping to select both a dean of the College of Law and president of the university.

Lt. Gen. Talley is a senior executive with experience in military, academic, corporate and government positions. He has experience in large-scale organizations, public-private partnerships, national and cybersecurity, environmental and energy sustainability, disaster emergency management, infrastructure resilience, data analytics and technology, R&D and higher education.

He currently serves as a member of the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition based in Washington D.C., an organization that works to strengthen tools of national security. 

Talley, 62, holds a Ph.D. (Civil and Environmental Engineering) from Carnegie Mellon University, an Executive M.B.A. from the University of Oxford, an M.S.E. (Environmental Engineering and Science) from The Johns Hopkins University, an M.L.A. (Liberal Arts – History/Philosophy) from Washington University in St. Louis, an M.S.S. (Strategic Studies) from the U.S. Army War College, an M.A. (Religious Studies) from Assumption College, and a B.S. (Forestry - Natural Resource Management) from Louisiana State University. He is a registered Professional Engineer (P.E.), a Board-Certified Environmental Engineer (BCEE) in Sustainability, and a Diplomate, Water Resources Engineer (D.WRE).