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OSU President Resigns Due to Sexual Misconduct Inaction at LSU

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Oregon State University (OSU) President F. King Alexander has resigned in the wake of allegations of his inaction in the face of sexual misconduct at Louisiana State University (LSU), where he previously served as president.

The OSU board of trustees accepted his resignation on Tuesday, effective from April 1. According to USA Today, Alexander will immediately be put on administrative leave. His resignation comes with a settlement agreement that will pay him an additional year’s salary.

Rebuilding Trust ‘No Longer Possible’

Last week, the board of trustees voted to place Alexander on probation. According to Rani Borkar, chairman of the board, the decision was made because the board “believe it was possible to repair the broken confidence and trust in his ability to lead OSU.”

“After listening to and hearing important input from diverse members of our community and reflecting on our own values and experiences, we now know that rebuilding trust is no longer possible,” Borkar told ESPN.

‘Serious, Detailed’ Institutional Failures

Alexander was the president of LSU from 2013 to 2019, a time during which law firm Husch Blackwell found that the university displayed a “serious institutional failure” to appropriately report incidents of sexual misconduct and abuse in athletics

The university hired Husch Blackwell after USA Today uncovered how officials in the athletic department and wider administration continued to doubt and ignore allegations of sexual misconduct and assault. 

According to the report, former athletic director Joe Alleva recommended that Les Miles be fired as the head coach of the football program after he was accused of inappropriate behavior with female student workers. This revealed that Alexander was aware of the allegations.

Alexander told the Corvallis Gazette-Times that he acted under the advice of his attorneys, who told him that he was unable to dismiss Miles because the LSU governing board made the decision to retain him before Alexander assumed office.

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