University of Northern Iowa President Ben Allen has announced plans to retire "no later than July 1, 2013." Iowa Public Radio's Pat Blank reports.
Allen was Iowa State University's vice president for academic affairs when he was picked by the Board of Regents to become U-N-I's president in April of 2006. In late 2010, Allen took time off to undergo treatment for prostate cancer. Over the past year, Allen has presided over a series of cut-backs at the school to eliminate a five-million dollar budget deficit. He made the unpopular choice to close the K-through-12 Price Lab School on campus as well as the UNI Museum. He says although he was widely criticized, that’s not why he’s stepping down. “We believe we made decisions that helped the University so I felt good about that and thought this a good timing because of that, not the negatives that took place last year,” he said.
A written statement from the president of the Board of Regents, Craig Lang, praises Allen for his role in "leading U-N-I through significant economic challenges." The search for his replacement is expected to begin in the next few weeks.