As of Monday, April 4, the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater witnessed an interim chancellor quit, who weeks earlier was noted by outgoing University of Wisconsin President Tommy Thompson as an asset to education.
Thompson visited UW Whitewater on March 7 for his farewell address in the University Center Hamilton Room with Interim Chancellor Jim Henderson.
“I had the opportunity to appoint Jim Henderson and name him chancellor,” Thompson said during his farewell speech. “He turned me down the first time I asked him to do something, and I was a little peeved.”
Thompson, despite being peeved, thanked Henderson for his work during the pandemic and his role, while chuckling about his Warhawk shuffle.
Henderson followed Thompson out the door roughly one month later. Henderson, standing abreast before his computer, chose the action of resigning and leaving Warhawks in the 11th hour scrambling to replace him.
Henderson’s email addressed his stance regarding his three goals stating:
- One of my three goals for my time as interim chancellor has been to help this campus hire the best chancellor possible who will be here for the long term.
- Over the past few days, it has become clear to me that I cannot make progress on that goal.
- Given that, I feel that it is in both the best interest of UW-Whitewater and me personally that I resign my position as interim chancellor, and I have submitted my resignation effective at the end of the day today.
Henderson’s resignation left the entire Warhawk nation scratching their heads stepping back in a perplexed manner after witnessing the D.B. Cooper approach through a bizarre email. Henderson’s email came at a time when the campus was under Thompson’s impression everything was solid.
The eerie and awkward silence amongst campus classrooms, in the wake of fear and loathing during the interim, contemplates the chain of events amongst Warhawk nation during pre-class discussion.
Prior to Henderson closing out his last order of business as chancellor, he presented Thompson with an honorary Warhawk jersey followed by a meet and greet. Henderson’s last words in the form of email solidify an ongoing dilemma regarding the curse of the Warhawk chancellor with shock and awe followed by faculty wondering how to lead students into the next interim phase.
“I have greatly enjoyed my time with you. I so admire all of you and what you are accomplishing for the students at both the Whitewater and Rock County campuses,” Henderson’s email to Warhawks shared. “I wish you the best going forward and thank you all for the incredible support that you’ve given me over the past 9 months.”
Despite Thompson’s appraisal, Henderson’s farewell did not provide laughter and a meet and greet like Thompson’s did.