Next chancellor to fill several empty permanent campus leadership positions

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Update 8/22/16: This article has been updated to reflect new information from a UC Berkeley spokesperson.

Despite several major campus leadership position not yet permanently filled, Chancellor Nicholas Dirks announced in a campuswide email Monday that the administration will not begin filling in these positions — those decisions will be left up to his successor.

On Tuesday, Dirks announced his plans to resign after several campus issues plagued his 3-year tenure here, including the campus’s $150 million annual budget deficit and mishandling of several sexual harassment cases.

“My paramount objective in these coming months is to ensure stability and continuity of the leadership and the campus during this time of transition,” Dirks said in the campuswide email.

The new UC Berkeley chancellor is intended to be approved of by the March 15-16 Board of Regents meeting in 2017, according to a letter from University of California President Janet Napolitano to the campus Academic Senate on Wednesday.

Dirks said in the email that the search for permanent leadership — including a permanent executive vice chancellor and provost replacing Claude Steele after resigning in April, a new vice chancellor for administration and finance replacing John Wilton after stepping down in January, and a new vice chancellor for student affairs replacing Harry Le Grande who will retire in December — will not launch until the new chancellor is “ready to do so.”

Campus spokesperson Dan Mogulof said that the community should trust the qualifications of interim leadership to move “full speed ahead” with work on campus issues in the meantime.

“These positions are not vacant,” Mogulof said. “These people remain committed to and focused on doing what needs to be done to address the university’s financial issues.”

According to the campuswide email, Dirks will continue to work with interim EVCP Carol Christ as well as other campus officials, particularly towards “administrative restructuring designed to restore the university’s budget.”

“In order to support the transition, I will also be spending considerable time with donors and alumni … as well as with the state and local political leadership whose ongoing support is so important to Berkeley’s long-term health,” Dirks said in the campuswide email.

Following UC Board of Regents policy, nominations for the committee that will conduct the search for the new chancellor will be submitted by Sept. 6, according to a letter from Napolitano. After the search committee members are announced in mid-September, the letter stated, campus students, faculty and other stakeholders will be able to to provide input on what characteristics the next chancellor should have.

University news editor Alex Barreira contributed to this report. 

Alexandra Yoon-Hendricks is the city news editor. Contact her at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @ayoonhendricks.