During an emergency meeting of the West Virginia University presidential search committee Friday (Feb. 28), a motion was introduced by staff representative Dixie Martinelli, and endorsed by the 20-person committee, asking the WVU Board of Governors to amend the search procedures and rescind a motion which stated the interim president would not be a candidate for the permanent post—and to take all necessary steps to retain the University’s current president, E. Gordon Gee, as the permanent president.

The full resolution is available here: http://wvutoday.assets.slate.wvu.edu/resources/1/1393615787.pdf

BOG Chairman and Chair of the Presidential Search Committee James W. Dailey II said an emergency BOG meeting will be called early next week. The Higher Education Policy Commission will also call an emergency meeting.

“Gordon Gee is absolutely, hands-down the very best person to be at the helm of West Virginia University at this important time and place in our history,” said Dailey. “I know we recruited him to serve until a permanent leader was in place and said the interim president would not be a candidate for the permanent presidency, but the search committee had a change of heart.

“It is clear Gordon Gee has not been a placeholder president by any means; he has been an extraordinary high energy leader who is getting things done, moving us forward and clearly has the support of our Board, senior University leaders, faculty and staff, students, elected officials, higher education peers and opinion leaders. Countless people have urged us from Day One to keep him.

“He is truly a perfect fit for this institution. His knowledge of and experience in higher education circles is unmatched – as is his national and international reputation.”

Dr. Gee first served as president of WVU from 1981-1985. He was hired when he was just 36. He returned in January 2014 for a term to replace the departing Jim Clements.

Following the meeting, which he did not attend, Gee said, “I am honored, energized and humbled by the Committee’s recommendation today. My return to West Virginia has reminded me of the special spirit of this university and the unique role it plays in this state. I am also reminded of the warmth and friendship of the people of West Virginia which have been demonstrated over the past few months in full measure.”



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