Ohio State president Gordon Gee has decided to retire after his second stint with the university, school representative Gayle Saunders announced on Tuesday afternoon. His decision to leave the school comes amid his recent comments during the school’s Athletic Council meeting in which he made disparaging remarks about other universities including Notre Dame.
Gee referred to Notre Dame as “those damn Catholics” during the meeting, and he also threw the University of Louisville under the bus for their academic status. When speaking about the Big Ten Conference, Gee said the main goal is to “make certain that we have institutions of like-minded academic integrity. So you won’t see us adding Louisville.”
Once news broke of the controversial comments, Gee issued an apology last week after being warned by the school’s Board of Trustees in March. Now, the 69-year-old will step down from his role as president of the university after some “self-reflection” during a family vacation.
“I recently returned from a vacation with my family, during which time I had a chance to consider the university’s phenomenal achievements and the road that lies ahead for it,” Gee said in the official release about his retirement plans. “Ohio State now has a richness of new opportunities that would be the envy of most universities. During my days away, I also spent some time in self-reflection. And after much deliberation, I have decided it is now time for me to turn over the reins of leadership to allow the seeds that we have planted to grow. It is also time for me to reenergize and refocus myself.”
This was Gordon Gee’s second stint with the school, as he served as president from 1990-to-1997 and again starting in 2007. Joseph A. Alutto, the university’s former provost, will serve as interim president until the Board of Trustees name a replacement.
Do you believe Gordon Gee is leaving Ohio State due to his controversial remarks about fellow universities during the Athletic Council meeting in December?
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