EAST LANSING, Mich. (FOX 2) - FOX 2's Tim Skubick obtained an email from former Michigan State University interim president John Engler that he sent his team on the day he resigned. In it, Engler expressed happiness toward the future - and it appears he took one final parting shot at his most severe critic on the board of trustrees.
Engler quit last week amid public backlash over his recent comments about Larry Nassar survivors "enjoying the spotlight." Just hours after he announced his resignation, and a resignation date of Jan. 23, the Board of Trustees unamiously agreed to accelerate his resignation, and to appoint Dr. Satish Udpa as new interim president, effective immediately.
Engler had resisted calls to step down in the past from Nassar survivors and trustees. He announced his resignation in an 11-page letter to board chairwoman Dianne Byrum. There was no mention of recent criticism over his comments to the Detroit News Editorial Board regarding the survivors, but instead a list of what he felt to be accomplishments.
In the email obtained by Skubick, Engler expresses his gratitude and happiness to his team at MSU. It reads, in full:
The final sentence is likely referring to Brian Mosallum, who has long called for Engler's resignation. The trustee tweeted "JOHN ENGLER'S REIGN OF TERROR IS OVER" on January 16, prior to his resignation. Mosallum issued the following statement on the new hire:
After announcing Udpa as new president, Board Chair Dianne Byrum said she believes this is "the beginning of a better relationship, both among Board members and to the MSU community as we continue the healing and pay respect to the survivors."
Dr. Udpa served as the school's executive vice president for administration and is a distinguished professor.
Nassar is now serving decades-long prison sentences for sexually assaulting patients and possessing child pornography.