Daily Bread for 4.5.22: UW-Whitewater’s Chronic Administrative Turmoil

Good morning.

Tuesday in Whitewater will be cloudy with a high of 50.  Sunrise is 6:28 AM and sunset 7:26 PM for 12h 58m 08s of daytime.  The moon is a waxing crescent with 17% of its visible disk illuminated.

 The Whitewater Unified School District’s Policy Review Committee meets at 9 AM, and Whitewater’s Landmarks Commission meets at 6 PM.

On this day in 1792, President Washington exercises his authority to veto a bill, the first time this power is used in the United States.

Since 2007, when FREE WHITEWATER first began publishing, there have been seven chancellors at UW-Whitewater: Saunders, Telfer, Kopper, Green (interim), Watson, Henderson (interim), and Chenoweth (interim). Of those chancellors, two presided over a campus beset with multiple sexual harassment clams (Telfer and Kopper).

One now reads that Interim Chancellor Henderson has resigned and Vice Chancellor & Provost Chenoweth is now Interim Chancellor Chenoweth.  (The UW System announcement of the replacement of one interim chancellor with another came from — truly — Interim System President Michael Falbo.)

UW-Whitewater is a school of good students and faculty with poor administrative stability and competency.

Kelly Meyerhofer’s reporting on the latest instability, Interim UW-Whitewater chancellor resigns in ‘unexpected’ move, offers a reason for Henderson’s resignation and describes past turmoil:

Jim Henderson, who took over as leader of the 11,500-student university last July, said in a statement that one of his goals as interim chancellor was to help hire the best chancellor for the long-term success of UW-Whitewater.

“Over the past few days it has become clear to me that I cannot make progress on that goal,” he said.

But a search hasn’t yet begun and just this fall, University of Wisconsin System President Tommy Thompson said at a UW Board of Regents meeting that Henderson had agreed to extend his service for a second year.


Henderson’s resignation is the latest in a string of leadership shake-ups at UW-Whitewater.

The previous chancellor, Dwight Watson, resigned last year because of a cancer diagnosis. The year prior, the System investigated him after a former student at a previous job accused him of sexual misconduct. Investigators found the accusations to be without merit.

Watson’s predecessor, Beverly Kopper, resigned after a System investigation found her husband had sexually harassed students and university employees, leading one of them to sue the university last fall for allegedly failing to protect women. Kopper’s husband denied the allegations.

The implication is clear enough: the UW System hasn’t made a new chancellor for UW-Whitewater a priority. If there’s ever been a campus in the UW System that’s needed stable and competent leadership, it’s UW-Whitewater. While one naturally pays more attention to events close at hand, it’s impossible to find a four-year System school that’s more troubled administratively than UW-Whitewater.

If the System has failed Whitewater, then so have some of Whitewater’s residents. It was, after all, local input (when local input mattered more) that led Whitewater notables (such as they were) to support Kopper’s appointment on the theory that she would continue Telfer’s supposed legacy. See The Last Inside Accounts and Revisiting Kozloff’s ‘Dark, Futile Dream.’

There’s mistaken, and then there’s ironically mistaken.

 Tonight’s Sky for April:

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
2 years ago

[…] Daily Bread for 4.5.22: UW-Whitewater’s Chronic Administrative Turmoil […]

2 years ago

[…] UW-Whitewater’s Chronic Administrative Turmoil and The Explanation(s) for the UW-Whitewater Chancellor’s […]