“The Presidential Search Committee and the WKU Board of Regents spent countless hours over the last 11 months identifying the attributes we believe are the most critical in our next president to assure the continued growth and relevance of WKU,” Board of Regents Chair Frederick A. Higdon of Lebanon said. “Dr. Caboni’s blend of academic and administrative experience and his expertise in external relations have prepared him well to lead WKU’s next chapter and build on the remarkable transformation we’ve achieved over the past 20 years.”
Dr. Caboni, 47, currently Vice Chancellor of Public Affairs at the University of Kansas, said he was excited about returning to lead his alma mater. He earned a master’s degree in corporate and organizational communication from WKU in 1994.
“It will be an honor and privilege to serve as WKU’s 10th president,” Dr. Caboni said. “I am thankful to the search committee and the WKU Board of Regents for their vote of confidence. Great universities inspire innovations, elevate communities and transform lives. That will be our guiding mission as we lift our students, our region and our world.”
Dr. Caboni promised “to work tirelessly alongside every WKU constituency—faculty, staff, students, regents, alumni, donors, community leaders, legislators and every other individual who has a stake or interest in this institution—to continue WKU’s remarkable growth and trajectory.”
Dr. Caboni has served as the principal spokesperson at the University of Kansas since 2011 and oversees the communications, marketing and advocacy efforts for the University’s five campuses and the KU Medical Center. Prior to his arrival at KU, he was associate dean of the Peabody College of Education and Human Development at Vanderbilt University.
In addition to his WKU degree, Dr. Caboni has a Ph.D. from Vanderbilt and a bachelor’s degree from Louisiana State University. His 23-year career in higher education includes positions in alumni relations, fundraising, teaching, academic administration, communication, marketing and government relations. (Dr. Caboni’s vitae.)
A native of New Orleans, Dr. Caboni is married to Kacy Schmidt Caboni, who has been a development officer with Kansas University Endowment since 2006. “Kacy and I look forward to building on the outstanding work of President Gary Ransdell and his wife, Julie,” he said.
Dr. Ransdell will retire this summer after 20 years as WKU’s president.
“The hiring of a president is the most important duty of a university Board of Regents,” Chair Higdon said. “Dr. Caboni possesses all the credentials and the type of experience we were seeking in a president. He is innovative and forward thinking, collaborative and inclusive. We are confident that he is the right fit to lead WKU into the future, and we are delighted to welcome Dr. Caboni and his wife Kacy to the Hill.”