In the end, things did not end well.
Len Jessup, The fifth president of UNLV since 2006 confirmed that he will resign his position to become the next president of Claremont Graduate University of California, one of seven schools that make up the Claremont Consortium of universities.
In a letter sent to the campus on Tuesday, Jessup pointed to his bosses: the Rector of Higher Education Thom Reilly and the elected Board of Regents.
RELATED | With the report of the departure of Jessup, the donor of the UNLV stops giving
"The events in recent months have clearly indicated that the Regents and the Chancellor have decided a vision and have implemented a management structure for UNLV inconsistent "I have consistently expressed my disagreement and, unfortunately, I have received personal and professional attacks from the Chancellor and some Regents, unfounded and unjustified opinions, and the media," Jessup wrote. they seem calculated to harm not only me, but the UNLV and the UNLV Foundation … ", he added.
At its core there was a disagreement over management: some Regents were concerned about costs in the new UNLV School of Medicine, the cost of the 2016 presidential debate and other issues that remained under the surface until it was learned that a donation of $ 14 million dollars from the medical school depended on Je ssup, and the dean of the School of Medicine, remaining in place. The donor, the Engelstad Foundation, later withdrew the gift of $ 14 million in the news. Jessup, fed up, was looking for a job elsewhere.
Kris Engelstad McGarry, trustee of the foundation, said structuring the donation – tying it to Jessup's tenure, was common and appropriate, and not a Jessup effort to safeguard his work. She said she trusted Jessup, not the Regents, to watch over her money.
"Donors today see things as partnerships, they are not just checks that deliver money and they assume you will do the right thing," Engelstad McGarry told me Friday. Referring to Jessup, she said "we never had a conversation prior to our gift agreement on the wording," and added, "he did not even know what the amount would be."
Reached today, she repeated her request for a board of appointed Regents, elected in the ratings, and not the elected board that we have today, elected by vote. She says that the foundation checkbook is now closed until the change occurs.
"We will not give anything to this institution as long as this Board of Regents is at stake," he tells me.
some Regents did not like how Jessup ran his school, he did not like how they handled it. In his letter, he almost accused them of micromanagement that bordered on negligence.
"This is intolerable and unacceptable and has created a work environment that is not productive for me or my staff, which, among other issues, had to deal with the continuous direct interference of individual Regents and others on their behalf …", wrote Jessup.
In his letter, Jessup states that he received an ultimatum from Chancellor Thom Reilly and President Regent Kevin Page on March 16: resign or be fired.
Today, Page said that "there are several significant inaccuracies in the facts in President Jessup's statement that do not accurately reflect the events that occurred in recent months." The page said board and Nevada policy. the law of open meetings prevented him from going into details, but said the details would come "at the appropriate time."
"I wish President Jessup a good position," concluded Page
Reilly, in his statement, said, "It is fair to say that I have significant concerns about operational issues that I have observed at UNLV." These concerns are well known to President Jessup, and we have engaged in frank and professional dialogue about these concerns for several months. ".
Reilly says it was Jessup who told him on March 5 that he wanted to leave and confirmed that on March 14 when he told the school he was looking for other opportunities Reilly said he spoke publicly on the subject on March 20, when he announced that he would hire a Director of Operations for UNLV.
"On March 28, I met with President Jessup to discuss how the COO position could be structured, I direct my concerns and give him the greatest benefit," says Reilly.
On today's campus, the sampling of the UNLV community we met was sad to see that Jessup was leaving.
"I think the level where we want to be raised was raised," says academic advisor Gene Kirschner, who he worries about the controversy that might dissuade other qualified applicants for President.
"We want someone of your caliber, or better, and they're going to be willing to come here," Kirschner asks.
] Chancellor Thom Reilly says the search now begins.
"I think UNLV offers a great opportunity for an academic visionary, with impeccable credentials, and the passion and commitment to develop a world" class institution, "says Reilly. "That will be our standard as we embark on a thorough and tireless presidential search."
Jessup says the legal details are still being worked on in his separation agreement and he hopes to stay here until the end of spring Semester
begins his new job at Claremont Graduate University on July 1.