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University of Tennessee president Joe DiPietro retiring

• Sep 17, 2018 at 2:17 PM

KNOXVILLE — University of Tennessee President Joe DiPietro announced Monday that he plans to retire early next year.

DiPietro said he will retire Feb. 14, but will actually step down from active service Nov. 21 to use his remaining vacation time.

“I am very proud of all we have accomplished together, which would not have been possible without the important efforts of our talented faculty, students, staff and administrators and the steadfast support of the Board of Trustees,” DiPietro said in a statement. “The University is well positioned for success — we are coming off a record-breaking year in research funding as well as private fundraising, and we have a committed group of chancellors and system administrators to move the University forward.”

DiPietro has served as president of the University of Tennessee system since January 2011. His role makes him chief executive officer of the University of Tennessee and its Knoxville, Chattanooga and Martin campuses as well as the Health Science Center in Memphis and the statewide Institute of Agriculture and the Institute of Public Service.

UT Board of Trustees Chair John Compton praised DiPietro’s leadership.

“He and the former Board of Trustees accomplished a great deal together. All stakeholders in the University system have been well-served by his tireless commitment to continual improvement across all of our campuses,” Compton said.

DiPietro forced out chancellor Beverly Davenport earlier this year, citing “numerous areas of unsatisfactory performance.” Her ouster came less than 15 months at the helm after a tumultuous search for a head football coach and other controversies.

During DiPietro’s tenure, UT had low tuition increases and the UT Foundation had record fundraising. DiPietro oversaw the construction of the Cherokee Farm Innovation Campus as well as 240 construction or renovation projects across the system.

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