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Letter to the editor: SBHE needs to get another chancellor

I’m writing to express concerns regarding North Dakota University System Chancellor Mark Hagerott. American culture is ready to grapple with gender bias. Further, in North Dakota, we’re pushing back against prejudice toward folks with disabilities and health issues (see backlash against Roscoe Streyle for using a disability slur). Why is it we have a gender-biased chancellor who’s also exceptionally insensitive toward colleagues’ private health (and potential disability) issues? First, let me say that his behavior seemingly borders on

illegal. If the chancellor was working in health care, I bet he’d be in violation of HIPAA. Second, I do have to ask: What’s in it for the State Board of Higher Education (SBHE) members who have been coming to his defense and/ or pretending this scandal isn’t unfolding? It’s not like they haven’t deposed a problematic chancellor in the past. Can’t they do it again and finally hire someone new who’s a good fit for the job, and who’s also good to the North Dakotans that serve under her (or him)?

Perhaps the governor’s new Task Force on Higher Education Governance can discuss how we came to have a SBHE so deeply invested in the status quo the SBHE created with this chancellor.