It was Tuesday morning when Marc Holtzman learned he was no longer a candidate for the presidency of Colorado State University.
“I am proud to be among the candidates considered by the (governing) board,” Holtzman said. “I am honored to get to go through this process.”
A close friend of current CSU President Albert Yates, Holtzman said he initially decided to run for president after learning of Yates’ intention to retire from presidency in late September 2002.
While having lunch with Holtzman, Yates casually mentioned plans to inform the Board of Governors of the CSU System of his intent to retire, Holtzman said. Yates announced his retirement to the CSU community on Oct. 4.
Both members of the Board for the Colorado Institute of Technology, Holtzman said he has been a close friend of Dr. Yates for four years.
“He and his wife are close personal friends,” he said. “We’ve been very close for four years.”
Yates had no comment on Wednesday about the candidates or Holtzman.
Gov. Bill Owens released a statement Tuesday through his spokesman, Dan Hopkins, about the board not selecting Holtzman, whom the governor endorsed in December.
“The governor continues to believe that Marc Holtzman would have been an outstanding choice for CSU president,” Hopkins said. “As a non-traditional candidate, Marc faced an uphill battle from the beginning. CSU is a valued institution and the governor looks forward to meeting with whomever the board selects.”
Amidst political controversy, Holtzman said he is honored to have the government’s support.
“I’m honored and proud to have the governor’s support,” he said. “I felt he was trying to do something positive for CSU.”
Despite the governor’s support, Holtzman remains unsure about its effects on his chances as president.
“It’s hard to tell; it certainly created a lot of attention from the beginning,” he said. “In an ideal world, I would have preferred to enjoy the anonymity of the other candidates.”
Holtzman also faced the challenge of being the only non-traditional candidate running for CSU president.
“Any non-traditional candidate has an extra hurdle to prove in an academic setting,” Holtzman said. “It doesn’t mean it’s good or bad, you just have to go further to prove your capabilities.”
Though only recently informed about the credentials of his running mates, Holtzman said he believes the board has chosen well.
“I’m honored to be considered,” he said. “I’m sure the board chose two outstanding candidates.”
Holtzman said he thought it was unlikely that either or both of the final candidates would take a job elsewhere.
“I personally doubt that would happen,” he said. “Both are capable and I can’t imagine that either would be offered and not accept.”
Holtzman said he is unsure whether he will pursue a job in higher education.
“It’s too early to say, I just got this news yesterday,” Holtzman said. “It gets very time-consuming. I plan on taking some time off.”
A member of the Global Leadership Council of the College of Business for over a year, Holtzman said he would remain active and involved at CSU.
“I have been a supporter and will be long after this process,” he said. “I hope that in some small way demonstrates my enthusiasm for CSU.”