Colorado Mesa University Trustees anoint John Marshall as next President
New CMU President John Marshall. Many in the community considered his appointment a foregone conclusion.
Colorado Mesa University’s Board of Trustees today appointed John Marshall as the next president of CMU.
Marshall, who formerly worked as a Republican political operative, was hired at CMU in 2007 by Tim Foster as “Development Director,” a job that at the time paid $100,000/year with no experience in academia. He was widely considered one of Tim Foster’s many Republican crony hires at CMU.
One student called the appointment “Cronyism at its finest” saying “I’m sure this was decided before Foster even stepped down…and the ‘search’ was, well, just a farce.”
In the August 21, 2006 Denver Post, Marshall publicly disparaged progressive Coloradans, calling them “pampered, bed-wetting liberals” and adding “No one cares what they say about anything.” CMU people have related several anecdotes where they observed Marshall being dismissive of incidents of homophobia involving students on and off campus.
Many students, staff and members of the of the public were disappointed and even despondent to hear Marshall was awarded the job, hoping for a new president who would have more background in academia and both symbolize and encourage more diversity on campus. Another staffer concluded the schools’ “national search” was a farce, believing Marshall’s appointment was a foregone conclusion before the process even started. Another said the search process was significantly flawed, citing a lack of ability for stakeholders to have meaningful input and the announcement that faculty would be given only 45 minutes to talk with each candidate.
In a nod to conciliation, a staff member referred to Marshall as “the Devil we know” and said, “I and my colleagues who wished things had turned out differently look forward to working with John on behalf of our students, and on getting him up to speed on what it is that faculty do in a university.”
Marshall will take over this summer after current President Tim Foster steps down.