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NEW YORK – The State University of New York (SUNY) Board of Trustees announced Monday Deborah Stanley has been appointed as interim chancellor for the New York state public university system.

The announcement comes nearly two weeks after Chancellor James Malatras said he would step down after several members of the New York State Assembly, including the Higher Education Committee Chair, called for his resignation after reports of disturbing text messages and emails sent by Malatras were made public last week.

Stanley, who is currently the president of SUNY Oswego, has brought nearly 45 years of leadership within the nation’s largest comprehensive system of higher education, according to the SUNY Board of Trustees.

She previously announced her retirement in May effective Dec. 31.

Stanley will begin her role as interim chancellor on Jan. 15, 2022.

“SUNY has a long and rich history of providing students the opportunity and access to the highest quality education at our premier colleges and research institutions, and President Stanley is the right educator at the right time to lead this prestigious university system,” said SUNY Board Chairman Dr. Merryl H. Tisch. “With President Stanley’s decades of leadership, commitment to academic excellence, and her unwavering support for students, she is well-positioned to serve our 64 campuses with a proven record of accomplishments, integrity, and intellect. On behalf of a thankful and proud Board of Trustees, we welcome Deborah as our new interim chancellor for the State University of New York and look forward to working alongside her to build on the greatness of this world-renowned institution.”

“During my tenure at SUNY, I have had the great pleasure of collaborating with exemplary leaders at all levels throughout our system, and it is an incredible honor to continue that work with the SUNY Board of Trustees and our campus presidents. I do not take lightly our responsibility to make sure we are providing a safe and welcoming environment that allows our students to grow academically and provide the foundation to pursue and reach their goals and dreams. During this leadership transition, their success will be my highest priority, and I look forward to leading this great university system to new heights,” Stanley said in a statement. 

The Board of Trustees is expected to launch a global search for the permanent SUNY Chancellor in January. 

Associated Press contributed to this report.