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Kristen Daum, Published October 15 2009

Dorgan: Chapman was outstanding leader

Joe Chapman was an “outstanding leader” for North Dakota State University, Sen. Byron Dorgan said this morning.

Dorgan, one of North Dakota’s Democratic senators, worked closely with Chapman in advancing research opportunities at NDSU during Chapman’s 11-year tenure as president.

Chapman submitted his resignation Wednesday, after recent criticism over university spending. The North Dakota Board of Higher Education accepted the resignation today.

“I have great respect for Joe Chapman and I think the university is different because of his leadership in a very positive way,” Dorgan said.

Dorgan declined to say whether he thought it was appropriate for Chapman to resign, but said such controversy can be difficult for people in public service.

“I can’t respond to the specifics of that and his decision to resign – that’s between him and the state Board of Higher Education,” Dorgan said. “What I can tell you is that my relationship with Joe Chapman was a good one. I think he provided very good leadership to NDSU for a long period of time.

“I respect the decisions that he has made,” Dorgan said.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Kristen Daum at (701) 241-5541