New Mexico Tech Selects a New President
Dec. 20, 2023
SOCORRO, NM – The New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology Board of Regents has selected Dr. Mahyar Amouzegar to be the institution’s 18th president beginning April 15, 2024. Dr. Amouzegar has been appointed to a five-year term with an annual salary of $425,000. Interim President Daniel López will serve in the same capacity through the transition period.
The Board of Regents selected Dr. Amouzegar after weighing input from the New Mexico Tech and Socorro community and with the assistance of national executive search firm Korn Ferry.
Dr. Amouzegar comes to NMT from The University of New Orleans, a public research university in New Orleans, Louisiana, where he has served as the Provost and Senior Vice President of Academic Affairs since 2017. He was named a Freeport McMoRan Distinguished Professor of Logistics earlier this year. He also served as the Dean of Engineering for California Polytechnic University, Pomona’s College of Engineering from 2011-2017.
Dr. Amouzegar has also served as a Senior National Security Policy Analyst for the RAND corporation since 1998, managing research teams to develop research ideas for the U.S. Air Force, securing funding, overseeing projects, and developing national security policy reports.
“I am thrilled and deeply honored to be entrusted with leading New Mexico Tech into its next chapter,” Dr. Amouzegar said. “NMT stands proudly at the forefront of innovation, a campus where brilliance converges with limitless possibilities. As we embark on this transformative journey, I also wish to acknowledge the historic town of Socorro, whose provenance is soundly intertwined with the campus’s growth and ingenuity.”
“The strength and beauty of NMT lie in its diverse human tapestry and unwavering dedication to equal access to opportunity. I’m eager to collaborate with this exceptional community — faculty, staff, students, alumni, Board of Regents, and other steadfast supporters—to elevate New Mexico Tech to new heights of academic and innovative excellence.”
NMT Board of Regents Chairman Jerry Armijo is pleased with the outcome of the search process and is looking forward to working with Dr. Amouzegar. “The Board had a difficult decision to make in considering the three candidates brought forward by the Search Committee,” Armijo said. “The quality of the candidates from which we had to make our choice confirmed how highly regarded New Mexico Tech is to academic leaders and researchers across the country.”
“Mahyar’s transformative leadership is evident from his tenure as Provost at UNO, Dean at Cal Poly Pomona, and Senior Policy Analyst at RAND Corporation. His unique integration of academic and practical expertise has led to strategic and enduring transformations.”
Dr. Amouzegar was selected from a field of over 70 candidates. The Board of Regents empowered the search committee to conduct an open and transparent search that incorporated feedback received from students, staff, faculty, alumni, researchers, and the residents of the Socorro community, the advice and assistance of the search firm, and within the parameters set out by New Mexico State statute.
Over 400 stakeholders responded to a survey conducted on campus and in the community at the outset of the search. The survey asked about the desirable qualities and skills of the next president and the priorities of the institution going forward. The search firm indicated that the survey response was one of the largest they had seen in recent memory covering hundreds of searches.
With this information and in consultation with the experts at the search firm, the field was first narrowed to 40 applicants, from which the search committee selected 12 for online interviews. In a two-step process, the field was further narrowed to five finalists who came to campus for presentations and question-and-answer sessions, starting with an open forum and moving into sessions with campus groups. Following campus visits, a second stakeholder survey provided an opportunity for input leading into the final selection. The search committee recommended its top three to the Board, a decision that did not involve Regents.
Dr. Amouzegar is an experienced and inspirational leader with an extensive background in academia and industry. An accomplished researcher and creative writer, Dr. Amouzegar has managed significant research grants, authored scholarly publications, and written literary fiction novels, demonstrating a rare combination of academic and creative talents. His transformative leadership is evident from his tenure as Provost at the University of New Orleans, Dean at Cal Poly Pomona, and Senior Policy Analyst at RAND Corporation. His unique integration of academic and practical expertise has led to strategic and enduring transformations.