NU President Hank Bounds stepping down

University of Nebraska President Hank Bounds is stepping down.

“I am writing to let you know that together with my family, I have made the difficult decision to step down as president of this great university,” Bounds wrote in a resignation letter. 

A statement to Channel 8 Eyewitness News said Bounds informed the university community on Monday. The statement said Bounds is is ” stepping away from administration to transition to other educational and consulting work.” He will step down late this summer and return to the South to spend time with his family. 

The Mississippi native spent four years in his role as university president, the seventh in the system’s history. 

“Growing up, I never dreamed I would even go to college, much less have the opportunity to work with some of the most talented students, faculty and staff in the world,” Bounds said. “To have been entrusted with this role by the Board of Regents is the privilege of a lifetime.”

Bounds wrote that the job had been personally demanding and that it was time for him to “recharge and reconnect” with his family. 

“I will leave knowing that the university is in good hands,” Bounds wrote. “When I began this job, I said the University of Nebraska had the power to change the world. With appropriate support from our partners in state government, the University can be even more impactful than ever.”

UNL Chancellor Ronnie Green issued a statement following Bounds’ resignation. 

“Hank has been a strong and dedicated leader for the University of Nebraska during some challenging times,” Green said. “He has been a tireless advocate for the NU system in the statehouse and across the state. I cannot thank him enough for his service. I wish Hank and Susie and their family the very best going forward.”

UNK Chancellor Doug Kristensen also released a statement following the news. 

“UNK has lost a great friend. I am personally and professionally saddened that president Hank Bounds is leaving the University of Nebraska,” Kristensen said. “President Bounds has been a visionary and thoughtful leader for the state of Nebraska and the University of Nebraska in particular. Hank has instilled a culture of excellence and of unprecedented positive collaboration between campuses. All of our campuses have been strengthened by his leadership. I know it was a difficult decision and I respect it and applaud him for his choice. He’s leaving the university and Nebraska stronger.”

You can read Bounds’ resignation letter below. 


I am writing to let you know that together with my family, I have made the difficult decision to step down as president of this great university.

The four years that I have spent serving alongside you have been among the most exciting and enriching of my career. Growing up, I never dreamed I would even go to college, much less have the opportunity to work with some of the most talented students, faculty and staff in the world. To have been entrusted with this role by the Board of Regents is the privilege of a lifetime.

While rewarding, this job has also been personally demanding. I have done everything I could to serve our students and the people of Nebraska effectively. Now, after more than 20 years in executive roles, it’s time for me to recharge and reconnect with my family.

We plan to return to the South, where much of our family lives, late this summer. I won’t be walking away from education, as one of the major goals in my career has always been to bring quality educational opportunities to all. Education transformed my own life, and I will continue to work to help young people experience that same transformative power.

I will leave knowing the University of Nebraska is in good hands. The President’s Office leadership team, and Chancellors Gold, Green and Kristensen and their teams, are a talented group. The Board of Regents has high expectations for our continued growth and momentum. Our faculty members are changing lives every day through their work in our classrooms, labs and fields.

And our students – the reason we come to work every day – convince me that Nebraska’s future is bright. I only wish I could have personally learned and told each of their 52,000 stories.

When I began this job, I said the University of Nebraska had the power to change the world. I believe that is more true today than ever. I can’t wait to see what you continue to achieve.

Thanks to each of you, and to all the people of Nebraska, for so warmly welcoming Susie, Will, Caroline and me as one of your own. We are forever grateful.

Sincerely,

Hank M. Bounds, Ph.D.
President 
University of Nebraska

 

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