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APSU names Minnesota area IT expert as new CIO

Dr. Sherry Lawdermilt.CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. — Dr. Sherry C. Lawdermilt, an information technology (IT) expert with more than 28 years of professional experience and seven years of military service, has been selected as Austin Peay State University’s (APSU) next associate vice president and chief information officer (CIO).

Efforts to fill Austin Peay’s top IT position began after the former CIO, Dr. David Sanchez, resigned last fall. Sanchez had served as CIO since March 2020. The University partnered with Storbeck Search, a national search firm focused on higher education, to find the best candidate.

Dr. Chad Brooks, associate provost and dean of the College of Graduate Studies, chaired APSU’s search committee throughout the process. The group held forums in March with the top four candidates before selecting Lawdermilt as CIO.

“It speaks volumes about APSU to have so many highly qualified candidates apply for such an important role as being APSU’s next CIO,” Brooks said. “I believe that Dr. Sherry Lawdermilt will be instrumental in driving innovation and transformation across our university, helping APSU to adapt to the fast-paced changes in technology and stay ahead of the curve.”

Lawdermilt will begin her new role at APSU June 12.

"I’m very excited to be joining the Office of Information Technology in serving the students, faculty and staff at Austin Peay State University,” said Lawdermilt.  “I look forward to collaborating with campus and community constituents to align technology initiatives with the University’s strategic goals."

Lawdermilt currently serves as associate vice president and chief information officer at Bemidji State University and Northwest Technical College, located in Minnesota. She previously worked in multiple IT roles at the University of North Dakota and the City of Grand Forks, North Dakota, and served in the United States Marine Corps from 1988-95.

“I am most appreciative of our amazing search committee and chair, Dean Chad Brooks, in leading us to Dr. Lawdermilt as our next CIO,” said Shahrooz Roohparvar, APSU vice president for finance and administration. “Her extensive tech background and approach to tackling complex problems is what reassures me that she is the best suited to support Austin Peay in this integral role.”

Lawdermilt comes to APSU with a Ph.D. in higher education leadership from the University of North Dakota. Prior to completing her Ph.D., Lawdermilt earned an MBA with a focus on management information systems and a bachelor’s degree in management with a concentration in computer information systems from Park University.