Third OU Presidential Candidate Withdraws, Leaving One

Posted on:

< < Back to

In one week, three of the four candidates for the Ohio University presidency have withdrawn from consideration.

On Thursday morning, Robert Frank, formerly of the University of New Mexico, emailed university officials thanking them for their hospitality, but withdrawing from consideration.

Frank did not give a reason for the withdrawal.

His was the third candidate this week to withdraw from the race. Dr. Pam Benoit, OU’s Executive Vice President and Provost, withdrew Wednesday and Dr. Dean Bresciani, of North Dakota State University withdrew his candidacy the day before.

Benoit sent an email to leadership, including outgoing President Roderick McDavis and soon-to-be interim President David Descutner, on Wednesday afternoon notifying them of her decision.

“Your support through this process has been uplifting and much appreciated,” Benoit said in the email provided to WOUB by the university. She was unavailable when contacted by WOUB for comment.

Neither Benoit nor Bresciani gave a reason for their departure from the candidacy.

The only candidate left in the running is Dr. Duane Nellis, of Texas Tech University.

The OU Board of Trustees is set to vote on a president at a meeting on the Dublin campus Feb. 22. OU Board Chair David Wolfort said the search committee and the board were enthusiastic about the transition of leadership.

“We are confident that our 21st president will be an engaging, dynamic leader,” Wolfort wrote in a press release on Wednesday.

McDavis is leaving the post on Feb. 18, at which time Descutner will take over until June 30. McDavis was set to leave on June 30, but accepted a job as managing principal at AGB Search, a search firm that focuses on higher education leadership, including presidential searches. He begins that position, located in Washington, D.C., on March 1, according to a profile on the company’s website.