New Mexico State chancellor leaving amid tumultuous tenure

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) – New Mexico State University’s embattled chancellor, who has been facing a climate of deep distrust and frustration with school leadership, is leaving.

The NMSU Board of Regents announced Friday that they and Chancellor Dan Arvizu have mutually agreed that he will step down.

“The Board of Regents appreciates all Chancellor Arvizu has done for our university,” Ammu Devasthali, chair of the NMSU Board of Regents, said in a statement.

Former NMSU President Jay Gogue will take over as an interim chancellor effective immediately.

Arvizu said it was for the best that the university be able to start a search for a permanent chancellor as soon as possible.

“For the past five years, my only motivation has been to do what I believe is in the best interest of NMSU, and transitioning now will allow the university to devote the time and effort needed over the next several months for a successful search,” Arvizu said in the same statement.

Arvizu drew concerns in the NMSU community after police body cam video came out from a dispute at his home. The $500,000-a-year chancellor was accused by his wife, Sheryl, of having an affair with a NMSU staff member.

He denied the affair.

It’s among other troubles the state’s second-biggest university has faced in recent months. The once-treasured men’s basketball program has been suspended for the season due to a fatal shooting. There’s also been a gruesome allegation of locker-room hazing.

There have been seven different presidents, interim presidents and chancellors at the school over the past 15 years.

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