- Associated Press - Thursday, October 22, 2020

DENVER (AP) - A retirement announcement by the president of the University of Colorado preempted a plan by a majority of the institution’s Board of Regents to fire him two years ago.

Notes kept by Regent Sue Sharkey detail private discussions among the board’s elected leaders about firing Bruce Benson in 2018, The Denver Post reports.

Benson announced his plans to retire as president in the summer of 2018.

The notes released by the university under the Colorado Open Records Act reveal concerns about Benson’s lack of leadership and efficacy at the helm of the four-campus, multibillion-dollar university system.

Sharkey’s notes indicate there were efforts by then-Regent Kyle Hybl to be named interim president. The notes also suggest Benson retaliated by using university donors to somehow threaten Hybl’s job outside the university.

Sharkey, in an interview, denied Benson was involved in any kind of threat to Hybl.

Benson and Hybl declined requests to discuss the circumstances leading up to the former president’s decision to retire.

Benson, now 82, retired last year after 11 years in office with successor Mark Kennedy already in place.

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