‘A very seedy form of quid-pro-quo’: U of M regent slammed for seeking UMD chancellorship

A regent on the University of Minnesota’s Board of Regents has resigned from the board to apply for a position as chancellor within the university system, 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS has learned.

On Tuesday afternoon, Dave McMillan delivered a letter to Governor Tim Walz announcing his resignation from the Board of Regents with the intention of applying for the interim position of chancellor at the University of Minnesota Duluth.

“My reason for resigning is to pursue another important and very consequential leadership opportunity on the University campus closest and dearest to me, UMD,” McMillan said. “I intend to formally apply for the position before the June 15 deadline.”

Last December, McMillan voted to approve a 30% pay raise for U of M president Joan Gabel, which included a base salary of around $700,000 and could pay up to 1.2 million dollars in the last year of his contract.

McMillan also voted last week to pass Gabel’s budget, which included a 3.5% tuition hike for students.

Gabel will appoint the next UMD Chancellor, who will then need to be approved by the Board of Regents. The UMD Chancellor’s current salary is approximately $310,000.

Former Minnesota Governor Arne Carlson told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS that he was not in favor of McMillan’s nomination because it looked like a conflict of interest.

“I am stunned. Completely dumbfounded. I can’t believe anyone is part of this kind of arrangement,” Carlson said. “It seems like a very seedy form of quid-pro-quo. And it gave the university a black eye, and it needs to be investigated. It seems like a very severe.

Rep. Brian Daniels, R-Faribault, is a member of the House Higher Education Committee. He told KSTP that McMillan’s resignation and subsequent candidacy for the UMD position were worth considering.

“I was a little surprised. Shocked a bit. I don’t think there’s anything illegal about what they’re offering, but it doesn’t bode well for the University of Minnesota,” Daniels said. “Admittedly, the optics are bad. And I don’t like the optics at all. I don’t like the way it’s going.

Hamline University law professor David Schultz said McMillan’s appointment raises questions about fairness in the UMD’s search for a new chancellor.

“It creates the possibility of a conflict of interest because McMillan has a relationship with Chairman Gabel that other candidates might not have,” Schultz said. “And he also has a relationship with the Board of Regents which, put together, could give him an inside track on the job.”

KSTP has asked President Gabel for comment, but a U of M spokeswoman said she could not arrange an interview on Wednesday.

McMillan told KSTP that his resignation letter speaks for itself and that he declined an interview request. He said he had done nothing wrong and was just trying to help UMD because they were struggling to find a new leader, and he was ready to take the interim job. to help with research.

Editor’s note: The on-air version of this story stated that “State Legislature Approves Multibillion-Dollar US Funding”. This is an error; the Legislature approves funding for the University of Minnesota’s multi-billion dollar budget. We apologize for this error.

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