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Regents Meeting Set on Report Critical of U. of New Mexico President

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The University of New Mexico Board of Regents is holding a meeting Wednesday to discuss possibly suspending or firing university President Bob Frank in response to a report critical of his management style.

The Albuquerque Journal obtained the report, which found some staff members said Frank at times displayed a temper and could be condescending and sarcastic. Report author, attorney Alice Kilborn, wrote that she saw evidence of “shades of a hostile working environment.”

Others interviewed for the report said Frank cared about his staff, was affable and said that the bulk of their interactions were pleasant.

Frank, who has been in charge of the school since June 2012, said last week that work in the president’s office at times has been intense and stressful, but it would be “inaccurate to describe it as a hostile work environment” and he said he had not seen the report.

“Therefore, he has no information as to the basis for the extraordinary actions set forth in the notice and the agenda for the meeting on Wednesday of this week,” his attorney, Jaymeson Pegu said.

The meeting announcement shows that regents will discuss “limited personnel matters” involving Frank including an option to place him on “administrative leave with pay,” pending an internal investigation, and an option to provide him with “notice of proposed termination for just cause.”

Frank, whose salary is $362,136, announced in September that he would not seek to renew his contract as the university’s president, though he didn’t give a reason for his decision. His contract ends May 31.

As part of his resignation agreement, regents offered him a tenured faculty position at the school’s Health Sciences Center with a $350,000 salary. It is not clear how any action from Wednesday’s special meeting could affect the offer.

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