BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Morgan State University’s president says he was blindsided by the decision not to renew his contract. He spoke about the controversy for the first time at a rally Thursday evening. Mike Hellgren interviewed him about the move that has divided the campus.
Morgan State University President Dr. David Wilson received a rousing welcome as he addressed more than 100 students, faculty and community members for the first time since the Board of Regents chose not to renew his contract.
“It’s hard for me to love any entity more than I love Morgan State University,” Wilson said.
He then spoke candidly to WJZ about the controversy that has divided campus, saying he was unsure whether his response to a series of brazen violent crimes at Morgan or complaints by some faculty they were not getting enough resources and didn’t like his leadership style has anything to do with his non-renewal.
“I have not received any explanation,” Wilson said. “It was indeed a shock for me.”
Supporters circulated a petition they plan to deliver to the governor to call for Wilson’s reinstatement. They claim the board acted improperly by making their decision in a closed session.
“Keep President Wilson in your prayers and in your emails to Governor O’Malley and to the Board of Regents,” said faculty member Dr. Gabrielle McLemore.
“The communities have supported him and I am supportive of him,” said City Councilman Robert Curran.
Wilson told WJZ he will work with the board and fight for his job.
“I really don’t know. I’m not a lawyer and I can’t even speculate on that,” he said.
Supporters claim in addition to taking binding action in a closed session, the Board of Regents also did not follow their own bylaws when they failed to publicly announce they were taking up Wilson’s contract renewal.