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University of Missouri

MU chancellor hired as University of Central Florida president

COLUMBIA, Mo. (KMIZ)

University of Missouri Chancellor Alexander Cartwright has been selected as the University of Central Florida's sixth president.

The University of Central Florida, located in Orlando, said in a news release that its board of trustees voted unanimously to hire Cartwright on Friday afternoon. Now the Florida Board of Governors must approve the selection with a vote, the university said.

The trustees selected Cartwright over another finalist, according to the release, citing his experience at MU and as part of the State University of New York system. The release also said Cartwright "is known for rebuilding Missouri's relationships with students and state leaders" after the November 2015 protests on campus that led to sharp losses in enrollment.

“I’m excited about the opportunity to be a part of a university that looks like the future of America,” Cartwright said in the news release. “This is an opportunity to build on a metropolitan research university with an ecosystem of industry partnership and a diverse student body of almost 70,000 students. That to me is extremely exciting.”

The chair of the board of trustees praised Cartwright in the release.

“Dr. Cartwright is an accomplished scholar with a history of strong leadership at a number of universities, including his current role as chancellor of the University of Missouri, where he has tackled a number of challenges,’’ trustee Beverly Seay said.

Central Florida announced Wednesday that Cartwright was a late entrant as a finalist for the job. UCF's campus media reported Cartwright had entered the race as the "mystery candidate." A professor reportedly started a petition to stop the decision, citing the rushed timeline and Cartwright's late entry.

“I want to wish Dr. Cartwright well in his new endeavors at the University of Central Florida,” UM System President Mun Choi said in a statement. “I will soon announce our transition plan for Mizzou. I have every confidence in our strong and talented leadership team at Mizzou, as well as our tremendous faculty, staff, students, alumni and friends.”

Cartwright made $502,000 at MU in 2019, according to public records. Information about his pay at Central Florida was not available.

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Matthew Sanders

Matthew Sanders is the digital content director at ABC 17 News.

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