U.Md. president’s ‘retirement’ now unlikely

WASHINGTON — University of Maryland President Wallace Loh is less than six months away from his planned retirement, and there’s still no search committee charged with finding his successor. In addition, WTOP has confirmed that Loh has made it known to the Board of Regents he’s not yet ready to retire anyway.

Loh’s retirement was announced at the end of October during a stunning news conference held by the University System Board of Regents and at the time it was made clear to WTOP that it wasn’t entirely his decision. But immediately after it was announced, political pressure started building to keep Loh and his job security only seemed to grow as the board of regents was pilloried for its handling of the fallout following the death of football player Jordan McNair earlier in the year.

A source tells WTOP that while Loh has raised the idea of staying on the job beyond his June retirement — something initially reported by Inside Maryland Sports — at this point, it’s not something the Board of Regents has discussed. But the board hasn’t had many discussions concerning Loh’s eventual successor either.

In fact, there’s been no movement toward putting together a search committee tasked with finding the next president. There’s also some belief that the series of scandals and missteps associated with the school has made it harder to attract the best candidates and that things would need to be stabilized before candidates would be willing to consider the job.

Asked if Loh was hoping to remain on the job beyond his June retirement, a university spokeswoman deferred comment to the Board of Regents. While Loh has drawn support from some university donors, others have been far more critical and want him out as soon as possible.

As several local politicians have rallied in support of Loh in recent months, and the Board of Regents has regrouped and retreated in the face of a torrent of criticism for how it handled the football scandal in College Park, it’s become apparent that Loh’s planned retirement is all but certain to be pushed back.

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John Domen

John started working at WTOP in 2016 after having grown up in Maryland listening to the station as a child. While he got his on-air start at small stations in Pennsylvania and Delaware, he's spent most of his career in the D.C. area, having been heard on several local stations before coming to WTOP.

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