Three University of Montana Officials Retiring This Year
On March 12th, University of Montana Dean of Students Charles Couture announced his retirement. Just this week, two more officials in President Royce Engstrom’s cabinet have announced their retirement. Vice President Bob Duringer, and today, the chief legal counsel for the University, David Aronofsky, announced his retirement at the end of the year. It remains to be seen what the status of Jim Foley, Vice President of External Affairs might be. Efforts to reach Foley have been unsuccessful, with his secretary saying Foley is taking personal time off.
Foley has been the ‘gate-keeper’ for contact with University officials until just recently, when news media released an email with information that he was upset with a female sexual assault victim going public with her accusations. Add to the list, former Athletics Director Jim O’Day and head football coach Robin Pflugrad, whose contracts were not renewed by the University in March, and there are a lot of empty offices on campus.
The University has been through a brutal year, with several ongoing investigations into sexual assaults by agencies ranging from the U. S. Departments of Justice and Education, and the NCAA, and the focus of national news media on the University and Missoula, as well. For his part, President Royce Engstrom has made himself available to KUFM and KGVO Radio for long-form interviews, and comments from callers on KGVO just this week. All eyes are on Main Hall to see what happens next.