U of M Regents approve contract for interim president Jeff Ettinger

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(ABC 6 News) – The University of Minnesota Board of Regents approved the employment agreement with Interim President Jeff Ettinger during a special meeting on Friday.

Ettinger will take over the position after current President Joan Gabel announced her departure earlier this year to pursue the chancellor position at the University of Pittsburgh. The board also reviewed and approved details related to the departure of Gabel, whose last day will be June 9.

Ettinger was announced as the interim president in early May after a day-long meeting that featured public interviews with four finalists and extensive discussion about each.

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“From the outset of our search for an interim leader, we reiterated now is a time for the University of Minnesota to build on the momentum we’ve created toward our long-term strategic goals and service to our students, and we are excited to have Interim President Ettinger officially join us in that effort next week,” said Board Chair Janie Mayeron. “We thank President Gabel for her service. The U of M is positioned for success in the coming year and beyond.”

Ettinger’s employment agreement is for the full 2023-24 academic year, ending on June 30, 2024, and commits to an annual salary of $400,000. The University has the option to end the agreement earlier if the Board’s upcoming search for the U of M’s 18th president successfully appoints a new leader before then.

The approved employment agreement also includes conflict of interest considerations. Ettinger resigned from the Board of Directors at Ecolab and The Toro Company. Additionally, he will take a leave of absence from his position on the Board of Directors for the Hormel Foundation. A separate conflict management plan referenced in the agreement details how these conflicts, along with any related to Hormel Foods, will be managed.

Ettinger’s first day in the role will be June 10.

Ettinger’s approved contract and conflict management plan are included in the public docket materials for the June 2 special meeting, which are archived at regents.umn.edu.