Regents Meet To Begin Selection Of New President

Monday, November 26th 2007, 10:07 am
By: News On 6

A regents meeting at Oral Roberts University has added significance now that they're looking for a president away from the founder's family. Richard Roberts resigned from the school on Friday, but remains as the head of the overall ministry that is closely tied to the University. News On 6’s Emory Bryan reports Pastor Billy Joe Daugherty is now acting head of the university. He's a regent and part of the discussion of what to do next.

On Monday, the regents were supposed to get the results of an investigation into the claims against Richard Roberts, both on the wrongful termination lawsuit and on the personal accusations that he misused university money.

Monday was the first day back in class since Richard Roberts resigned as president. The regents started a long scheduled regular meeting that is supposed to last two days. New on the agenda is how to move forward on selecting a new president which will be the first one outside the Roberts family.

The news of Richard Roberts’ resignation was one of Google's most reported news items of the weekend. The prominent magazine Christianity Today asked in a headline "Will Richard Roberts Let Go of ORU?" and plenty of online opinions were voiced about the scandal and the future of the school.

The faculty had already weighed in with a survey before the resignation that said:
“Roberts should not lead ORU, the president should be a trained academic leader and that the faculty should have input on who gets the job.”

When the faculty was asked if Roberts should continue as president, only 8% said 'yes' and 80% said 'no.' When asked if the future president should have a terminal academic degree and/or administrative experience, 89% said 'yes.' When asked if the faculty should be involved in the selection of the president, 82% of the faculty agreed.

The attorney for the professors who filed suit against Roberts wanted to wait for the regents to act before commenting. The university isn’t commenting and Richard Roberts private attorney said his client would have no comment for now.

Roberts attorney called the lawsuit that started all this a "baseless lawsuit" and said the resignation won't impact how they fight the accusations, all of which Roberts denies.

The regents are expected to make a statement on Tuesday.

Watch the video: ORU Regents Meeting To Decide Direction

For complete coverage of the ORU lawsuit, click here.