EUGENE, Ore. — The State Board of Higher Education met on the University of Oregon campus Friday with one item on the agenda: vote on the appointment of Michael Gottfredson as the next UO president.
This is such a day filled with kind of hope not only for the University of Oregon but for the state of Oregon,” said Board Member James Francesconi.
Gottfredson was one of about 20 candidates for the job, but Board members say it was clear this man surpassed the rest.
“I’m not saying the candidate pool was shallow by any stretch of the imagination. It was the fact that we had one candidate that really fit what we were looking for,” said Board Member Allyn Ford.
Board members say it was an easy decision to come to, unlike the one they had to make back in December.
“You know the last vote we had regarding a permanent president was the opposite. It was filled with pain and division, and it was very difficult for all of us involved,” Francesconi said.
That last vote–firing former U of O President Richard Lariviere who didn’t see eye to eye with the Board.
Members say this time they’ve found a leader that shares the vision of the Oregon University System.
Members also praised Gottfredson for his commitment to making higher education affordable and accessible during his time as provost and executive vice-chancellor at UC Irvine–something they say is a commitment they hope he brings to Oregon. That’s why they unanimously voted to bring him here to get the job done.
“I’m feeling greatly honored and enormously enthusiastic. Those remarks were very kind, and I appreciate them very much. I hope I can live up to those expectations. I certainly intend to,” Gottfredson said.
Gottfredson is hired for a three-year term, making $540,000 each year. He will start August 1.