LSU System President fired
BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - LSU System President Dr. John Lombardi has been terminated. The LSU board supervisors had a vote of 12-4 in favor of ousting Lombardi during a meeting Friday afternoon.
Lombardi has been terminated, but will continue to be paid through the end of his contract which expires in January 2013.
The board voted to appoint former LSU System President Bill Jenkins to fill the position on an interim basis until a permanent replacement can be found.
The move is being pushed behind the scenes by Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, sources said.
Lombardi was offered the opportunity to resign but declined, sources added.
Board member Tony Falterman of Napoleonville said he does not support the move but added there are enough votes on the board to fire Lombardi.
Falterman believes the Jindal administration might be behind the move because Lombardi recently testified before the state legislature and was critical of Jindal's plan for higher education.
Lombardi was supposed to take part in a discussion about budget cuts with Chancellor Michael Martin and Student Government at LSU Thursday night.
LSU's newspaper The Daily Reveille reports Lombardi canceled the meeting on short notice via e-mail, citing an "unavoidable engagement."
Lombardi was named system president on July 13, 2007. He took over on Sept. 1 of that year.
Prior to heading up the LSU System, he was the chancellor of the University of Massachusetts and before that, president of the University of Florida.
Lombardi replaced former LSU System President William Jenkins when he retired.
Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal released the following statement:
"LSU is a great university system and it deserves a great leader. The Board of Supervisors made the right decision." – Gov. Bobby Jindal
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