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Governor says he ' s confident in current Board of Regents

Rod Boshart

The Gazette

December 9, 2006

[Note: This material is copyright by The Gazette, and is reproduced here as a matter of "fair use" for non-commercial, educational purposes only. Any other use may require the prior approval of The Gazette.]

  DES MOINES — Gov. Tom Vilsack said Friday he remains confident the best possible candidate for University of Iowa president can be found despite continued controversy in the search.

  Vilsack also told reporters he has confidence in the Board of Regents and that people on the Iowa City campus will get through adversity to reach consensus.

  ‘‘People should not lose focus regardless of what happens in terms of activities on the campus,’’ Vilsack said. ‘‘They should not lose focus on the single most important thing out of all of this, which is that we get the very best university president.

  ‘‘That’s been my goal from the beginning. It’s my goal today and I am confident that at the end of all this that we collectively, everyone involved in this, will find that candidate.’’

  The governor said he hoped jump-starting the search could proceed ‘‘notwithstanding what people’s attitudes are about each other personally.’’ That referred to noconfidence votes planned next week by UI faculty and staff and calls for regents to resign.

  Vilsack said he does not intend to convene another meeting about the search but intends to talk with the various parties. He said he was encouraged that the initial search produced a consensus candidate.

  UI Staff Council President Mary Greer and Faculty Senate President Sheldon Kurtz said Friday that Vilsack did not discourage their pending no-confidence votes. Regents President Michael Gartner said in a Gazette interview Thursday that the votes won’t have an impact on the regents.