Lubbers tapped for higher education post-WEB ONLY

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A search committee unanimously voted today to recommend that state Sen. Teresa Lubbers be hired as Indiana’s commissioner for higher education.

Lubbers confirmed through a spokeswoman yesterday that she was a leading candidate for the job.

The Indiana Commission for Higher Education is expected to confirm the recommendation at its May 8 meeting in New Albany. The search committee was composed of eight members of the 14-member commission.

Lubbers, a Republican from Indianapolis, would replace Stan Jones, who will step down April 30. Jones is reportedly set to take a job with a newly forming education group backed by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Jones has led the commissioner since 1995. The group oversees Indiana’s state-supported colleges and universities.

Lubbers has been a state senator in the 30th District since 1992. Her current and fifth term ends in 2012, but she would have to step down to accept the commissioner’s position.

Lubbers serves as chairwoman of the Indiana Senate’s Committee on Education and Career Development. She also chairs the Midwestern Higher Education Commission and sits on the board of two schools.

In March, Lubbers was appointed to serve on the Education Policy Task Force of the Council of State Governments.

Lubbers is a graduate of Warren Central High School, Indiana University and the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

Early in her career, she worked as a public information officer for Richard Lugar, while he was mayor of Indianapolis and after he became a U.S. senator.

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