MORGANTOWN, W.Va.– The Board of Governors at West Virginia University has hired E. Gordon Gee as permanent university president.
The board met in an emergency meeting Monday morning and unanimously approved a motion to immediately negotiate a contract with Gee as the full-time president.
Before the BOG could move ahead with the hiring, it first had to rescinded a motion it made last November that prohibited the temporary president from being a candidate for the permanent job.
The hire still requires the approval of the state Higher Education Policy Commission.
Monday’s decision follows Friday’s surprising support for Gee from a university search committee that evaluated a nationwide array of more than 30 candidates. The position was scheduled to be filled by June.
He has been serving in an interim role at WVU since the departure of former president Jim Clements, who is now at Clemson University. Gee was appointed for a term with an annualized salary of $450,000.
Gee served as president at WVU from 1981-1985 after several years as WVU’s law dean. That was followed by stints as president at the University of Colorado (1985-90), Ohio State (1990-97), Brown University (1998-2000) and chancellor at Vanderbilt University (2000-2007).
Gee returned to Ohio State University in 2007 as president and continued to serve there until his retirement in June of last year following controversial comments about Catholics and Notre Dame.
In 2009, Time Magazine named Gee one of the top 10 university presidents in the United States.