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University of Maine System chancellor gets one-year contract extension amid wave of criticism

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Michael Dwyer
/
Associated Press file
Former Connecticut Governor Dan Malloy, seen in August of 2016.

The embattled chancellor of the University of Maine System will stay in his position for at least another year.

The system's board of trustees voted on Tuesday to extend Dannel Malloy's contract until the end of June 2023. It comes despite no-confidence votes from several campus faculty senates over a mishandled presidential search at the University of Maine at Augusta that could cost the system nearly $600,000.

System Board Chair Trish Riley acknowledged the wave of criticism, but said Malloy also has successfully navigated the system through a pandemic and a transition to unified accreditation, and that stable leadership is needed as the system faces declining enrollment and financial challenges.

"The year will give the Chancellor an opportunity to re-build trust, increase transparency, and sustain the momentum of needed change that he has begun," she said.

Trustee Mike Michaud also said the one-year extension is a way to hold the chancellor accountable for his mistakes while ensuring stability in the years ahead.

"But if you're a member of Congress, if you have a system that's unstable, with leadership that's not there, it puts doubt into the minds of those who are giving that money. So it's about more than one individual. It's about stability," he said.

Malloy said that he was "humbled" by the experience of the past few months, and he vowed to improve communication moving forward.

As part of the extension, Malloy will not receive his 2022 bonus, nor a salary increase next year, beyond a cost-of-living adjustment.