U of M Board of Regents chair resigns from leadership role; special meeting set for Thursday

Ken Powell has resigned from his role as chairman of the University of Minnesota Board of Regents, according to the university.

Powell will continue to serve as a regent through the end of his term, which expires this year.

Janie Mayeron, the previous vice chair on the Board of Regents, will step into the role of chairperson and serve out the chair’s term of office.

“I have worked closely with Ken over the past several months as Vice Chair and am ready to lead in the role of Board Chair at this critically important time for the University,” Mayeron said in a statement.

It comes after the Regent Candidate Advisory Council didn’t recommend Powell for reelection earlier this year.

In light of the announcement, a special meeting of the Board of Regents for the University of Minnesota has been called for Thursday.

The goal of the meeting is to address the next steps in selecting an interim president following Joan Gabel’s hiring as chancellor of the University of Pittsburgh and also provide guidance on transitional planning, as well as to suspend the election notification requirement and select a new vice chair for the board.

“Our mission of education, research, and outreach must — and will — guide any decision the Board makes,” Mayeron said. “We are committed to acting with openness and transparency to reassure you and the public that the University will maintain momentum on key priorities while reinforcing our institution’s service to all Minnesotans.”

The meeting can be viewed on the Board of Regents website at 9 a.m. on Thursday.

Powell has served as a regent since 2017 and said in his letter announcing his resignation as chairman, “It has been a tremendous honor to serve the University of Minnesota as Chair for these past four years. I look forward to continuing that service through the completion of my term as Regent.”