A search committee at the Arkansas Department of Higher Education is recommending Maria Markham as the state agency’s new director, ADHE announced today.

Markham is currently a vice chancellor at Cossatot Community College in De Queen, a campus of the University of Arkansas system.

The search committee will make its recommendation to the Arkansas Higher Education Coordinating Board  this Friday. ADHE said in a press release that the other finalists for the post were Dr. MacGregor Stephenson, a former deputy chief of staff to Texas Governor Rick Perry, and Dr. John Townsend, associate vice chancellor of workforce development for Tennessee’s board of regents.