UCF Board of Trustees Accept Resignation of President Dale Whittaker Amid Spending Scandal
By Space Coast Daily // February 21, 2019
investigation uncovered misspent operational funds
ORLANDO, FLORIDA – The UCF Board of Trustees voted Thursday to accept the resignation of UCF President Dale Whittaker.
On Tuesday, Whittaker resigned submitted his resignation to the UCF Board of Trustees after Florida Rep. Randy Fine (R-Palm Bay) sharply criticized the school when an investigation uncovered misspent operational funds.
Fine made comments during the Feb. 13 House Higher Education Appropriations subcommittee meeting.
“I believe that we are stewards of taxpayer money and we are obligated not to fund organizations that refuse to steward that money in an appropriate way,” said Fine.
“If it was a private business that I owned, I would shut it down.”
The investigation found $38 million in state funds were illegally used to construct Trevor Colbourn Hall last September.
After further investigation, it revealed additional violations of more than $84 million in state operating funds that were either spent or set to be spent on other construction projects.
According to state regulation, the funds were earmarked to be used only for activities such as instruction, research, libraries, student services or maintenance.
Whittaker was elected president by the Board of Trustees on March 9, 2018, following a national search. He was confirmed by the Board of Governors and took office July 1 of last year.
Prior to being elected president, Whittaker was UCF’s provost and executive vice president. Before coming to UCF in 2014, Whittaker served in multiple faculty and leadership positions at Purdue and Texas A&M universities for more than 25 years.
“I have never wavered in my efforts to completely address every aspect of these challenges,” said Whittaker.
“However, despite my work to find and solve these problems, it has been made clear to me that for UCF to succeed with our state leaders in the future, new leadership is required.”
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