University News

WVU lays groundwork for Gee to remain president

By
University News Editor
Monday, March 3, 2014

Former President E. Gordon Gee, currently the interim president at West Virginia University, will hold the post for the long term after the school’s presidential search committee amended its search procedures Friday to allow the interim president to be selected.

The committee also recommended taking “all necessary steps to retain” Gee, according to a university press release.

The move reverses a previously adopted motion that precluded the interim president from being considered as a candidate for the permanent position and paves the way for Gee to begin his second full term as West Virginia’s president.

Gee also served as West Virginia’s president from 1981 to 1985 ­— the first of five university presidencies or chancellorships he would go on to hold.

“Gordon Gee is absolutely, hands-down the very best person to be at the helm of West Virginia University at this important time and place in our history,” said James W. Dailey II, chairman of the university’s Board of Governors and chair of the presidential search committee, in the press release.

“It is clear Gordon Gee has not been a placeholder president by any means; he has been an extraordinary, high-energy leader who is getting things done, moving us forward,” Dailey said in the release. “Countless people have urged us from day one to keep him.”

Gee, who presided over Brown from January 1998 to February 2000, left the University after a controversial tenure, which remains the shortest in University history. His unexpected departure to assume a higher-paying post as chancellor of Vanderbilt left many at Brown angry, The Herald previously reported.

During his time at the University, Gee drew criticism for his business-like leadership style, which many asserted and Gee acknowledged may have been a poor fit for Brown’s more academic culture.

Gee’s recent six-year tenure as president of Ohio State University also came to a controversial close, as he announced his resignation last June amid pressure after making some potentially offensive remarks about Catholics.

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