Tommy Thompson on water skiing: 'I know you think I'm nuts' | KSTP.com

Tommy Thompson on water skiing: 'I know you think I'm nuts'

FILE - March 18, 2016 photo of Tommy Thompson in West Salem, Wis. Photo: AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast. FILE - March 18, 2016 photo of Tommy Thompson in West Salem, Wis.

Associated Press
Updated: September 21, 2021 05:16 PM
Created: September 21, 2021 05:12 PM

Tommy Thompson says people may think he was "nuts" for water skiing at age 79, but the interim University of Wisconsin president and former Wisconsin governor says he got on the skis earlier this month to "give it to the old college try" before summer ends.

Thompson had surgery Thursday to have his bicep reattached to the tendon after being injured while skiing.

Thompson told reporters at an online news conference Tuesday that, "I know you think I'm nuts." Thompson says he will be back on water skis next summer and plans to go snow skiing this year.

Thompson, a Republican, served as Wisconsin governor from 1987 until 2001, when he left to become U.S. Health and Human Services secretary under then-President George W. Bush. He served four years and then returned to Wisconsin. He ran for U.S. Senate in 2012 but was defeated by then-U.S. Rep. Tammy Baldwin, his first statewide defeat. Thompson was appointed interim UW president in July 2020.

The university's Board of Regents is searching for a permanent president to replace Thompson. That person is expected to be named early next year.

Thompson has been an active interim president during the COVID-19 pandemic. He's advocated for testing and vaccinations on campuses. Last year he shot a series of public service announcements wielding a sledgehammer to destroy a variety of objects while urging the campus community to "smash COVID." He's also clashed with Republicans who control the Legislature over COVID-19 mandates.
 


(Copyright 2021 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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