May 102012
Authors: Andrew Carrera

Louisiana State University Chancellor Michael Martin was named a finalist for the vacant CSU Chancellor position by the university’s Board of Governors on Thursday morning.

“While there were certainly many excellent candidates, Dr. Martin quickly rose to the top of the committee’s list because of the clear record of leadership and results he has demonstrated throughout his career in public higher education, particularly at multi-campus systems,” said Pat McConathy, who chaired the search committee charged with finding the best candidate for the position.

The working group started searching for candidates in Dec. of 2011 after Joe Blake resigned from the position.

Members of the Board of Governors will now discuss the chancellorship with Martin, 65, as well as possible terms of employment.

More than 450 people across the nation were contacted about the position. Dozens of applications were reviewed and five candidates –– including Martin –– were interviewed.

But this isn’t the first time Martin has been declared a finalist for a top position at CSU. He was also in the running to be the university’s president in 2003. His rival finalist, Larry Penley, ended up taking the job only to resign in 2008 amid widespread criticism of his job performance. He was replaced by current-president Tony Frank.

Martin emailed LSU students moments after the chancellorship announcement:

“This morning, Colorado State University announced that I have been named a finalist for the chancellorship of its three-campus system. Information about my involvement with Colorado State reached the news media over the course of the last 48 hours and I regret that only now am I able to address this with you.

Allow me to share my situation as it stands today:

Despite the considerable fiscal challenges faced by LSU over the past four years, Jan and I have developed a deep affection for the people of LSU, Baton Rouge and Louisiana. This is a truly great university and I am proud to serve it.

I have not sought other professional opportunities, but a few have approached me. It has been my plan to finish my career at LSU. Sometimes plans change. I was first informally contacted by Colorado State in December and then formally contacted in January. I did not seek out this opportunity and my conversations with Colorado State are in no way related to recent changes at the System Office.

I have not received a formal offer. If I do, I will carefully consider it. My single criteria for deciding what to do at this stage of my professional life is this – where do I have the best chance of making a positive difference?

As events and options unfold I will try to keep all of you informed. Whatever happens, be assured LSU will continue on its journey to excellence. Certainly challenges lie ahead but the remarkable dedication of all members of the Tiger nation will ensure success.”

Developing. Stay with the Collegian for more updates.

News Editor Andrew Carrera can be reached at

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