UW-Whitewater chancellor resigns following cancer diagnosis

June 18, 2021 GMT

WHITEWATER, Wis. (AP) — The chancellor at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater has resigned due to health reasons.

Chancellor Dwight Watson will step down at the end of the month following his recent diagnosis of stomach and intestinal cancer.

“This type of cancer is exacerbated by stress,” Watson wrote in his resignation letter this week. “The stress in the role of the chancellor is plentiful.”

Interim System President Tommy Thompson appointed Jim Henderson to serve as interim chancellor starting July 1. Henderson previously served as the System’s vice president for academic and student affairs from 2016 to 2018, the State Journal reported.


Watson, who became chancellor in August 2019, has led the campus through some difficult times that included declining enrollment, budget cuts and the coronavirus pandemic.

He was sidelined for a month last fall after a former student at one of his previous jobs accused him of sexual misconduct. System officials determined the accusations were without merit.

Watson will help Henderson with the transition through the end of October at his current salary of nearly $250,000 and then can become a tenured faculty member.