Arizona Board of Regents President Eileen Klein announces departure

Klein has been the president of ABOR since 2013

Arizona Board of Regents President Eileen Klein announced Monday she will depart the board that is in charge of a billion-dollar budget and the state's top public universities.

In a lengthy post titled, “Unfolding my deck chair … some personal news," released on the regents’ website on March 26, Klein wrote she will leave ABOR later this year “to take some time off before deciding what my next adventure will be.”

The ASU graduate began her presidency in 2013, initially on a three-year contract that was extended in 2014 through June 30, 2017.   

ABOR Student Regent Aundrea DeGravina, a psychology and political science senior, said she appreciates Klein's help in further developing student regents and ensuring the student voice is heard in the decision-making process.

"She has left a positive impact on the state of Arizona through her work in higher education," DeGravina said.

During Klein’s five-year term as president, she managed the enterprise executive committee that includes university presidents and worked closely to mold the board's 2025 strategic plans. 

According to a release, the enterprise executive committee puts together strategies to reach the board's annual and long-term goals and reports progress yearly to the rest of the board.

Recently, Klein's tenure as ABOR president has seen controversy due to a lawsuit filed by the Arizona Attorney General over tuition hikes. The suit is still ongoing.

ASU President Michael Crow worked with Klein during her entire tenure and said in a statement that public servants like her don't come along every day.

"Her leadership, drive and intelligence created a culture that has allowed the Board to achieve big things," Crow said in the statement. "And, just as importantly, (she) set big goals for the continued advancement for our university system and our state."

Under Klein's presidency, ABOR has focused on improving student safety, increasing diversity and creating more paths to a higher education, according to a blog post Klein penned in 2015.

Kelsey Wilson, political science senior and Undergraduate Student Government Tempe vice president of policy, said Klein has done a great job of keeping communication open between USGT and the student regents.

"We are excited to see who is taking over the position," Wilson said. "And USGT will work to keep a strong relationship with ABOR."

Although ABOR and ASU have worked hard on their partnership, Klein said there is still work to be done. 

"Public higher education will continue to face turbulent waters as America continues to search for new education delivery options to reduce costs, expand access and improve student outcomes amidst dwindling public investment," Klein said in her statement.

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