Thursday, September 26, 2019

Interim BHSU president was secretly investigated while at UW

While she was secretly being investigated by University of Wyoming trustees tribes and UW cited former President Laurie Nichols' leadership for heading off a budget crisis and stanching declining enrollment.
The news of her imminent departure shocked the campus. None had expected her to leave. Nichols herself was emotional when she addressed the Faculty Senate in the days after the news broke. Nichols had come to the university amid a significant budget crisis, a situation further exacerbated by a projection that enrollment would crater. In her three years, she had steered the university through the budget fiasco and turned enrollment around completely. Her tenure was marked — and is still lauded today — for her engagement with Wyoming’s tribes and with the Black 14. The news that she would not continue “came out of a clear blue Wyoming sky,” then-Faculty Senate chair Donal O’Toole said. [Trustees quietly investigated Nichols before unexplained dismissal]
Nichols is a former South Dakota State University Provost currently serving as interim president at Black Hills State University in Spearditch.


  1. "Former University of Wyoming President Laurie Nichols has been admitted as a party to the court case regarding the potential release of university records pertaining to her ouster from UW earlier this year. However, Albany County district court Judge Tori Kricken ruled that Nichols will not be allowed to see the disputed records that the judge was given to see if they constitute public records.
    Now that Nichols is a party to the court case, she has until Dec. 10 to file a brief. Then both UW and the news organizations in the case will get a chance to respond to her brief. Nichols is currently the interim president of Black Hills State University and is a candidate for the presidency of University of North Dakota and for the position of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s executive vice chancellor of academic affairs. Laramie Boomarang

  2. Nichols prepares to flee South Dakota making short list for University of North Dakota prez: Grand Forks Herald.

  3. Still interim president at BHSU in Spearditch Nichols has asked a judge not to release her records containing "sensitive information." She's still a finalist for executive vice chancellor for academic affairs at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln: Laramie Boomerang.

  4. "The revelations included in the documents touched off an immediate debate over whether Nichols’ apparent behavior was viewed differently because she was a woman. Even Gov. Mark Gordon acknowledged that Nichols’ exit, along with the hasty departure of former UW President Bob Sternberg, had prompted many to wonder if the university was adrift. [Editorial board: Nichols controversy shows secrecy only causes problems]

  5. This was taxpayer money. "The university spent $42,532.61 between July and December to fight a lawsuit brought by WyoFile, the Star-Tribune, the Wyoming Tribune Eagle and the Laramie Boomerang." Casper Star-Tribune


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