Mr. Fix-It

In the wake of a complicated athletic scandal that ended the careers of five students, as well as its basketball coach, athletic director, and president, Binghamton University announced that it has an interim president. According to an article in the Binghamton Press & Sun Bulletin:

SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher announced [C. Peter] Magrath’s nomination as interim president Thursday during a media conference at BU. Magrath will fill the gap between Lois DeFleur’s retirement and the naming of DeFleur’s permanent successor.

“I think one of (Magrath’s) most compelling attributes is his long history of academic leadership (at) like-minded research universities like Binghamton University,” Zimpher said.

Perhaps more importantly Magrath has extensive experience leading universities out of public relations nightmares.

From 2008 to 2009 Magrath served as the interim president of West Virginia University. Magrath took over after the prior president was forced to resign when the university gave a former student an unearned MBA. Heather Bresch, the daughter of the governor, had taken less than half of the courses generally required for the degree but was awarded a diploma anyway. This prompted donors to revoke gifts and students and citizens to complain about the president’s conduct.

Magrath also briefly served as president of Binghamton much earlier in his career, from 1972 to 1974.

Daniel Luzer

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer