The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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Cal State Chancellor Charles B. Reed announces retirement

CSU Chancellor Charles Reed holds a question and answer session with students in 2011 about education budget cuts. Sundial File Photo

The California State University chancellor, Charles Reed, announced his plans for retirement Thursday after serving for 14 years as leader of one of the nation’s largest institutions of higher education.

Reed will continue to serve until a new chancellor is appointed by the CSU Board of Trustees, according to a statement released by the chancellor.

The announcement of Reed’s retirement comes during a turbulent time for the CSU, which has seen a total of $750 million in funding cuts this year, a 9 percent tuition increase, and possible $250 million more in cuts looming on the horizon in November.

“Our campuses have continued to flourish even in the face of budgetary challenges and tremendous growth,” Reed said in a personal statement to CSU employees.  “Throughout my time here, the CSU has grown by more than 100,000 students, and I have been honored to sign more than a million diplomas.”

Reed and the CSU administration have come under fire from students and faculty over spending practices, enrollment freezes, and salaries of CSU campus presidents.

The chancellor’s own salary, at $421,500 plus $30,000 in annual bonus, has been a hot point for protesters, along with San Diego State University’s $400,000 presidential salary, and most recently, CSUN’s $350,000 remodel of the campus president’s home for incoming President Dianne Harrison.

“This ‘changing of the guard’ provides a unique opportunity to reflect on the direction of the CSU, and to improve the quality of education at the nation’s largest university system,” a statement released by the California Faculty Association (CFA) said.

We sincerely hope and will actively work to make sure Chancellor Reed’s retirement will offer an opportunity to usher in an era of better relations among CSU faculty, staff, students, and system management.”

The CFA, which has been actively protesting the CSU system including a walk-out at Cal State Dominguez Hills last November and the threat of future strikes, asked for transparency in the selection process of the new chancellor.

As chancellor of the CSU Reed spearheaded a program for early assessment of 11th graders’ college readiness, and has made efforts through community collaboration to increase access to higher education for minorities.

Reed was chancellor of the Florida State University system for 13 years before coming to California and has received many awards for his leadership including the Hesburgh Award for Leadership Excellence this yea, the Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize in Education, and the Lamar R. Plunkett Award, Southern Regional Education Board.

“He has been a strong proponent of quality and affordable higher education,” said Harry Hellenbrand, interim president at CSUN in a recent statement. “This is particularly noteworthy given these tumultuous times. We wish him the best and thank him for his leadership and service to the CSU and its mission.”

Reed said he will use his retirement to spend time with family and will continue to pursue projects related to higher education.

“From the very beginning, I was drawn to the California State University system because of my great respect and admiration for its mission,” Reed said. “Fourteen years later, I am proud to have served at this great institution through such a dynamic period in its history.”

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