Shalala: I have no plans to leave

President Donna E. Shalala
President Donna E. Shalala

Despite persistent rumors that University of Miami President Donna E. Shalala plans to leave the school for a position in the administration of President Barack Obama, she maintains that she is fully commited to UM long-term.

“I have absolutely no plans on leaving,” Shalala told The Miami Hurricane when asked if she thought about leaving or retiring during the next one to two years, the amount of time Shalala has said it might take for UM to recover from the effects of the current economic crisis. “Of course, I serve at the pleasure of the Board of Trustees, but I have no desire to leave.”

Shalala came to the school in 2001, following the 20-year tenure of Edward T. “Tad” Foote. Before that, she served eight years as President Bill Clinton’s secretary of Health and Human Services. Only one former president, Jay F. W. Pearson, served fewer than 19 years in the role.

There had been rumors published in the Miami Herald and elsewhere that she would return to her old cabinet post when Obama was elected, and once again when former nominee Tom Daschle was forced to withdraw following tax issues.