IN THE NEWS: American University (D.C.) placed President Benjamin Ladner on administrative leave only days before the fall 2005 semester was to begin. According to media reports, AU wanted to investigate reports of Ladner's "unusual" spending, which was outlined in anonymous letters sent to university administrators and to The Washington Post. The letters' author claims Ladner and his wife charged the university for European vacations, the services of a personal chef, maintenance of their residence in Maryland, and wine that cost $100 per bottle. Ladner, whose base salary is $633,000, has been a successful fundraiser for AU. His fundraising duties as president raised valid questions in the media: With the role of president blending personal social life with public duty, is it getting harder to define what is appropriate?... Colorado state legislators are questioning the appointment of a governor's cabinet member to lead Front Range Community College. This summer Karen Reinertson, the state Medicaid director, was picked to replace Janet Gullickson, to be president of the community college system. Gullickson was on the job for one year only, and she left abruptly in early August. The system will pay her a resignation agreement, along with her $150,000 annual salary until December 2005.
APPOINTED AND PROMOTED: Georgia University System Chancellor Thomas Meredith is leaving his post to take a comparable job in Mississippi. Meredith, who served in his current post for three years, is said to have had a turbulent tenure marked by clashes with the governor and the board of regents. Prior to coming to Georgia, Meredith had worked in Mississippi for more than 20 years. He will be paid $325,000 and be given a $25,000 housing allowance to run the eight-campus Mississippi system... Henry Nemcik, a long-time fundraiser for the Texas A&M University, will be the next vice president for Development and Alumni Affairs at the University of Tennessee... Bastyr University (Wash.) has picked Dan Church to be its next president. He most recently worked for the United Methodist Church as general secretary/CEO of the General Council on Ministries... Peter McPherson has become the president of the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges (D.C)... Jim Moran is the new director of development for the Independent Colleges of Washington, an association that serves students in Washington state. Moran comes from Safeco Corporation where he directed the National Urban Initiatives Program.