Oregon State president F. King Alexander resigned from his position in the wake of the growing sexual misconduct scandal at LSU, the school announced on Tuesday. Alexander was the president at LSU from 2013-19, the time period during which multiple incidents allegedly occurred including improper behavior from former head football coach Les Miles.
Alexander was placed on probation by the Oregon State Board of Trustees last week, and his resignation will be effective April 1.
"When the Board of Trustees adjourned last week, we believed it was possible for President Alexander to repair the broken confidence and trust in his ability to lead OSU," said Rani Borkar, chairman of the Board of Trustees. "After listening to and hearing important input from diverse members of our community and reflecting on our own values and experiences, we now know that rebuilding trust is no longer possible. In response, over the weekend, the Board scheduled to meet this morning as we learned President Alexander no longer had the confidence of the OSU community. This broken trust was expressed not only by the vote of the Faculty Senate but by an outpouring of thoughtful statements from students, alumni and survivors of sexual assault."
An independent investigation by Husch Blackwell into multiple sexual misconduct reports at LSU found that it had a systemic failure during Alexander's tenure regarding the handling of sexual assault and misconduct complaints against Miles. Among the many allegations, the report states that Alexander was informed of inappropriate behavior with female students by then-head football coach Miles in 2013. Joe Alleva, who served as the school's athletic director at the time, recommended that Miles be fired in 2013 due to the allegations. Despite Alleva's recommendation to fire Miles due to the incidents, Miles was retained until 2016 after the football team started 2-2.
"Oregon State University is committed to public higher education and to provide for the prosperity and wellness of all," Borkar said. "We serve the needs of Oregonians, our nation and the world and are guided by our values of accountability, transparency and compassion. In everything we do, this university and its board must act with integrity. We admit when we make mistakes, and we always seek to improve. This has been our past for 152 years, and it will continue to be our future."
Miles spent the last two seasons as the head coach at Kansas. The two sides mutually agreed to part ways on March 8 as a result of the Husch Blackwell report.