June 17, 2024
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Leadership may be on Cal Lutheran’s Town Hall agenda

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The Preus-Brandt Forum will be the location of CLU’s Town Hall on May 21. (Mike Harris / PCBT Staff)

Faculty and staff of California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks will gather for a May 21 Town Hall meeting at which the future of embattled President Lori Varlotta may be up for discussion. 

The Town Hall will be held from 11 a.m. to Noon at the Preus-Brandt Forum. It is closed to the public and the press.

Such Town Halls are held following quarterly Board of Regents meetings, including one held May 17-18.

Given a faculty vote of no confidence earlier this year, Varlotta’s future at the university may have been taken up by the regents, but it is unclear what, if any actions, might have been taken.

University spokesman Mark Berry declined to comment on what was discussed at the board meeting or what will be discussed at the Town Hall. Past and current members of the Board of Regents declined to comment.

Varlotta became the university’s eighth president and its first female president in September 2020, succeeding Chris Kimball, who was CLU president for 12 years.

On Jan. 16, the university’s faculty overwhelmingly passed a no confidence resolution on Varlotta, petitioning her to resign or for the school’s Board of Regents to remove her.

The faculty resolution said in part that the educators have no confidence in Varlotta’s “ability to be an effective steward of the university budget and her ability to maintain the financial health of the institution.”

On Jan. 17, three regents, speaking on behalf of the full body, issued a statement saying Varlotta continues to have the regents’ “full support.”

On Jan. 20, Varlotta told the Business Times she had no intention of stepping down.

“I’m very interested in continuing to work with the university community in a collaborative and collegial way that helps us deal with a lot of the issues that are very common to tuition-driven institutions like mine,” she said.