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University of Nebraska approves new president Walter Carter

Posted at 6:49 PM, Dec 05, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-05 19:49:49-05

LINCOLN, Neb. (KMTV) — The University of Nebraska has a new president.

This morning, the Board of Regents approved the contract of Walter Carter, who could make more than a million dollars a year with incentives, which is by far more than any president has ever made at Nebraska.

"We believe that we have found the person we are looking for,” says NU Regent Chairman Tim Clare.

It was an eight month process, now over.

The University of Nebraska made it official today, making Walter Carter the eighth president, replacing Hank Bounds who surprisingly resigned in the spring.

Before Nebraska, Carter led the US Naval Academy. Chairman Tim Clare flaunted Carter's commitment to education and says he checks every box.

"His character and integrity are second to none, diversity and inclusion matter deeply to him and we expect him to translate that into results here just as he did at the Naval Academy,” says Clare.

Carter will command a hefty salary of $934,100 and could pass a $1 million with performance bonuses.

When he takes over he'll be the fourth highest paid president in the Big 10.

Elizabeth O’Connor of Omaha was the lone no vote. She says Carter is worth the price, but with layoffs and tuition hikes, she couldn't stomach it.

"There are too many professors serving as adjuncts instead of at livable wages, too many students that are struggling worried about tuition, worrying about their own future. And too much uncertainty about the universities funding for me to feel comfortable at the proposed salary at this time,” says O’Connor.

Regent Robert Schafer cites the higher salaries of football coach Scott Frost and basketball coach Fred Hoiberg, saying Carter will have even more responsibility.

"Unbelievable the amount of responsibility that he's stepping into. We want the best, we've gone out and found the best, we're going to hire the best,” says Schafer.

The regents are confident his talents in bringing in funds and research possibilities will make up the cost.

"I'm hoping that taxpayers and students that are looking at this number and asking why so much of their money is going into a salary, can we understand that we are doing it because the payoffs are going to be worth it to us,” says Emily Johnson, UNL Student Regent.