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OSU board officially names Rebecca Johnson interim president

Oregon State University has chosen an interim president.

Posted: Apr 16, 2021 7:56 AM
Updated: Apr 16, 2021 3:43 PM

CORVALLIS, Ore. -- Oregon State University has chosen an interim president at Friday's Board of Trustees meeting.

The meeting comes three weeks after former President F. King Alexander resigned amid outrage from the community over his handling of sexual misconduct complaints while president at Louisiana State University.

The board at OSU is making it clear that they listened to everyone – faculty, staff, students and the public – before choosing a person to nominate.

After a community survey and one-on-one interviews with 50 different stakeholders in the community, the board considered nominating Rebecca Johnson as interim president. Johnson is currently the vice president at OSU-Cascades campus in Bend.

School leaders surveyed the community and got 100 nominees from that process, but ultimately Johnson was chosen as a finalist because her name came up in both surveys and one-on-one meetings.

OSU board chair Rani Borkar said Johnson has shown leadership through a decade of enrollment and academic program growth, challenges and success at OSU-Cascades, and working to create trust with the Bend community.

Johnson has more than 30 years of experience at OSU as a faculty member and in a number of college and university academic and administrative roles.

University officials said Johnson will begin as interim president on May 1 and hold the position until the permanent president is selected. Johnson will move from Bend to Corvallis for the job.

The board was scheduled to meet at 1:30 Friday afternoon to consider her appointment. You can watch the virtual meeting online.

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