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UW Trustees hear mixed reaction about the UW Presidency

The University of Wyoming’s Board of Trustees is considering making Interim  U-W President Dick McGinity the full time President. The Trustees held a public discussion on the issue Thursday and got plenty of advice.

Addressing a room full of people, Staff Senate President Jim Logue told the board that U-W staff would prefer to see the board conduct a formal search for a new president.

“We are happy to have this accidental president.  I have not heard any concerns about McGinity’s abilities.  I’ve heard concerns that we may be missing opportunities by not going through a formal search.”

Several faculty members said they were worried that McGinity’s academic experience was too thin and that he needed more time to prove himself.  They also want input in the final selection.

But others from campus argued that making McGinity President would bring more stability to the University. Dean of Libraries, Maggie Farrell, said that changing the president’s title is a minor issue, compared to the business of taking care of the university’s students and staff.  She expressed what many at the meeting felt…it’s time to move forward.  

“While the title, I know, is an important decision for the trustees, we feel that there are critical priorities.  We are behind our president in focusing on staff and faculty salaries as that is just a pressing and critical priority.”

U-W General Counsel Rick Miller said the bylaws require that a faculty and staff committee be involved in the hiring of all new university presidents, but he also suggested that they could go against their policy.  

The trustees may make the decision about McGinity’s title change at their Friday meeting. 

Melodie Edwards is the host and producer of WPM's award-winning podcast The Modern West. Her Ghost Town(ing) series looks at rural despair and resilience through the lens of her hometown of Walden, Colorado. She has been a radio reporter at WPM since 2013, covering topics from wildlife to Native American issues to agriculture.
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