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PSU President Finalist, Kathie Olsen, Withdraws from Selection Process

Endi Hartigan - Office: 503-725-5702; Cell: 503-929-5234

Portland, OR, April 25, 2008 - George Pernsteiner, chancellor of the Oregon University System, announced today that one of the two finalists for the Portland State University presidency, Dr. Kathie Olsen, has withdrawn from the selection process. Olsen has served as deputy director and chief operating officer of the National Science Foundation (NSF) since 2005 when she was confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

Dr. Olsen, who visited PSU and Portland on April 7 and 8, decided to remain at the NSF and not pursue the PSU opportunity at this time. “I truly enjoyed my time at Portland State, especially meeting face to face with faculty, students, staff, and the Portland community. As a native Oregonian, I hold the higher education system and PSU in high regard, and wish the University the best as it selects its next leader. Given my current work at the NSF, I made a difficult decision that this is just not the right time for me to keep my candidacy going for this important leadership position at Portland State. I thank everyone at PSU who took the time to meet with me and share your vision for the campus’ future.”

"Dr. Olsen is a vital and vibrant leader," said Pernsteiner. “We are appreciative that she considered the presidency of PSU, and I regret that she has chosen to withdraw. I wish her the best in her current work and respect her decision not to pursue the position of PSU president.”  

The State Board of Higher Education intends to make a decision on the new PSU president by early May.

Oregon University System (OUS) comprises seven distinguished public universities, reaching more than one million people each year through on-campus classes, statewide public services and lifelong learning. The Oregon State Board of Higher Education, the statutory governing board of OUS, is composed of eleven members appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Oregon State Senate. For additional information, go to www.ous.edu 

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