Former University of Wisconsin-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank is making a very sudden and serious change of plans.
Monday was supposed to be Blank’s first day at her new job as president of Northwestern University, but now she’s been diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer, and will return to Madison for treatment.
In a statement, Blank said she’s leaving Northwestern because fighting her cancer will require all her strength.
The job of president requires multiple events, long days, travel and constant energy, especially in the first year. I have always been able to deliver this in previous jobs, but my doctors advise me that the treatments I am starting will make it almost impossible to do the job you need in a new president. I do not have the words to express to you how disappointed and sad I am to be telling you this. I was excited to be joining you at Northwestern, a world-class institution that is near and dear to my heart.
Blank was UW Madison chancellor for eight years before stepping down a few weeks ago.