Buescher says he’d consider chancellor’s position at CSU

Outgoing state Rep. Bernie Buescher, D-Grand Junction, said in addition to seeking to become the next secretary of state he is interested in becoming Colorado State University’s next chancellor.

“I have talked to them,” Buescher said Thursday. “I am interested, but I also have said very strongly I am not going to do anything to get ahead of their process.”

The opening at the top of Colorado State University came after the institution’s president and chancellor, Larry Penley, announced earlier this month he is retiring.

Buescher said CSU has not decided whether it will create a chancellorship position that is separate from its presidency, and details about the position were outlined broadly during his discussions with the university.

He said, however, his strong relationships with the state Legislature, the Joint Budget Committee — which Buescher used to head — the governor and the state’s business community would benefit the university.

Buescher’s ability to work with broad coalitions, according to Buescher’s former colleagues, also has made him a frontrunner to succeed Congressman-elect Mike Coffman, R-Colo., who will step down as secretary of state next year.

Buescher was one of 20 applicants for that position along with term-limited Speaker of the House Andrew Romanoff, D-Denver, and state Sen. Ken Gordon, D-Denver.

If he applies for the Colorado State University job, Buescher would find himself competing with at least one prominent former lawmaker, U.S. Sen. Wayne Allard, R-Colo., who has expressed interest in the job.

Even with this competition, Buescher said his experience suits him well to function as a top university administrator and advocate for higher education.


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