James W. Dailey II, chairman of the West Virginia University Board of Governors, issued the following statement Monday (Nov. 11) on the departure of President Jim Clements:

“Since the hiring of Jim Clements in 2009, West Virginia University has experienced unprecedented success in many areas – private giving, enrollment, academics, research funding, health care, community service, economic development and so much more,” said BOG Chair James W. Dailey II. “Of course he will say it is because he has had a great team, but it’s more than that.

“Jim is a natural born leader – someone who understands the higher education climate. He is committed to excellence. He stands for integrity and is a champion for this University and its diverse audiences – from students and their parents, to faculty and staff, to donors and funders, to city, state and federal lawmakers, to opinion leaders, to our state’s citizens and others.

“The bottom line: He understands how a public land-grant University changes lives — and he has brought people together to make that mission a very powerful one on our campus.

“I want to personally thank him for his leadership and vision, as well as his friendship. And on behalf of the WVU Board of Governors and a grateful University, we wish Jim and Beth – and the entire Clements family – all the best as they transition to a new home at Clemson University.

“The Clemson Tigers are getting a national-caliber leader who, we know, will always carry the Mountaineer spirit in is heart.

“In the coming days and weeks we will announce a plan for interim leadership, and then a permanent plan moving forward.”


Statement from Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin:

“When President Clements came to West Virginia University, he brought with him an air of excitement about the future of our land grant institution. Since then, he has built upon the University’s strengths—bringing new opportunities to both WVU’s students and our state. I’m grateful for President Clements’ service—and I wish him and his wife, Beth, and their children, much success at Clemson.”


Statement from Paul Hill, chancellor of the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission:

“Jim Clements has led West Virginia University with great vision and distinction. On behalf of the Higher Education Policy Commission, I thank him for his service to the university, to the state and especially to the thousands of students whose lives have been changed – for the better – during his tenure. The Commission sends Jim and his wonderful family continuing good wishes for the road ahead.”


Statement from Michele Wheatly, vice president for academic affairs and provost:

“Under President Clements’ leadership, we have undertaken initiatives in raising academic standards, improving student success and establishing WVU as a leader in faculty research. It has been my privilege to work with him on these initiatives. I wish him and his family nothing but the best in his new endeavor, and look forward to continuing to raise the bar as we move this institution forward.”


Statement from WVU Chancellor for Health Sciences Christopher C. Colenda, M.D., M.P.H.:

“We are very grateful to President Clements for his support of the health sciences, especially during the founding of the new School of Public Health and for his personal and university support for the Clinical and Translational Research Award. He offered great leadership that enhanced the growth of both our academic programs and the clinical enterprise – WVU Healthcare and the West Virginia United Health System. He was a great friend to my wife and me, and we wish Beth and him the very best as they start this new life at Clemson.”


Statement from Bruce McClymonds, president and CEO of WVU Hospitals:

“President Clements has been a strong leader of the board of directors for the hospital. He offered a strategic perspective and vision for what WVU Healthcare could become and we are better for his leadership.”


Statement from Lisa M. Di Bartolomeo, chair of the Faculty Senate:

“President Clements has always been a vocal supporter of the faculty, and enjoys putting on his ‘faculty hat,’ as he calls it, to point out that he is one of us—a faculty member who has taught classes, maintained a strong research agenda, and kept up a solid record of service. His commitment to faculty has been clear since he arrived, as he worked to implement his promises of 100 new faculty lines, with 84 of those lines allocated. He has also made a huge mark throughout the state of West Virginia, demonstrating his commitment to the principles of the Morrill Act of 1862, which created land-grant universities such as WVU, as well as the Smith-Lever Act of 1914, which created the Extension service to reach out to the people of states with land-grant institutions. He may not have been born a Mountaineer, but he will always be loved as one across the state.

“As faculty, we have respected his enthusiasm, his leadership, and his strong commitment to transparency and shared governance. He has brought WVU to national prominence for all the right reasons, and has made Mountaineers across the world prouder than ever. On behalf of the WVU Faculty Senate, and the faculty in general, I can only wish him well, and begrudgingly say to Clemson that they are lucky to have this man to lead them.”


Statement from Lisa Martin, chair of the WVU Staff Council:

“President Clements came to WVU at a time when we needed a positive leadership role model. He has done a great job of leading our university and positioning us to be in better shape than when he arrived. He has always strived to do what is right, not only for Classified Staff, but for everyone at WVU. While he has made the difficult decision to do what is right for him and his family, we must also forge ahead and do what is right for WVU as a whole. We wish President Clements and his family much success in the next chapter of their lives.”


Statement from WVU Student Government Association President Ryan Campione:

“I’m sad that President Clements is leaving WVU. He will be extremely missed. However, he’s done a fantastic job here, and I know he will lead Clemson University in the positive direction as he did with WVU.

“The president has been a huge mentor to students, and I’ve always appreciated the time he has taken to listen to student issues no matter how small or large they are.

“He is extremely student-focused. If there was ever an issue, he always made it a priority listen to students. He always led WVU in a positive direction.

“I’ll continue to represent students in this issue and will make sure that we find a presidential candidate to help WVU.”


Statement to campus from WVU Tech Campus Executive Officer Carolyn Long, former chair of the WVU BoG:

“On behalf of the WVU Tech campus, I want to thank him for his hard work and support of our campus. We wish him well in this new endeavor.

“Over the past few months, we have seen tremendous growth and success at Tech. We must continue this momentum. I look forward to our continued collaboration with WVU in our collective efforts to Recruit, Retain, and Rebuild WVU Tech.”


Statement from Bob Reynolds, chair of the WVU Foundation Board of Directors:

“WVU has excelled in many areas under the leadership of Jim Clements. Included in those successes are many new records set in private fundraising. The WVU Foundation has enjoyed a great working relationship with Jim, and we wish him, Beth and the entire Clements’ family the very best.


Statement from Wayne King, president and CEO of the WVU Foundation:

“During President Clements’ tenure at WVU, private fundraising reached new heights. Jim also has played a key role in the success we are experiencing in our current comprehensive campaign. We appreciate his commitment to development, and wish him and his family the very best moving forward.”


Statement from John Fahey, chair of the WVU Alumni Association Board of Directors

“While I hate to see the Clements’ family leave, I do recognize the opportunity for a young, ambitious person like Jim. He and Beth have been wonderful friends to myself personally, the WVU Alumni Association, and to all of West Virginia. Make no mistake we will search far and wide to find a president that has a sense of urgency and excitement much like Jim. We wish nothing but the best for the Clements family. They have made lifelong friends at WVU.”



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