University of Wyoming Parts Ways With President Laurie Nichols After Three Years

In 2016 the University of Wyoming named its first woman president, 130 years after the university was founded in 1886. On July 1, 2016 Laurie Nichols became the 26th president of the University of Wyoming. She was offered a three-year contract, with base pay of $350,000 annually.

President Nichols tenure has proceeded without major controversy and she appeared to have the support of most constituencies on the university’s campus. But this support did not extend to the university’s board of trustees. The board announced this week that Dr. Nichols contract would not be extended beyond June 30.

“I was very surprised by this decision,” Nichols said. “It wasn’t anticipated.” Dr. Nichols will remain at the university as a faculty member.

Before coming to the University of Wyoming, Dr. Nichols was provost and executive vice president for academic affairs at South Dakota State University. She had served in that role from 2009 to 2016. Earlier in her career, she taught for six years at the University of Idaho. In 1994, Dr. Nichols was named dean of the College of Family and Consumer Sciences at South Dakota State University. For the 2008-09 academic year, Dr. Nichols was the interim president of Northern State University in Aberdeen, South Dakota.

Dr. Nichols is a graduate of South Dakota State University. She holds a master’s degree in education from Colorado State University and a Ph.D. from Ohio State University.

Filed Under: Retirements


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