Interim ECU chancellor put on leave after bar photos surface

North Carolina news

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCN) – Dan Gerlach, interim chancellor at East Carolina University, has been put on administrative leave, the UNC System announced Monday.

A statement from UNC System Interim President Bill Roper said the move was due to “reports from this past weekend.”

An ECU spokeswoman told WNCT that Gerlach went to the bar Sup Dogs near the campus of the university last week.

While there he ran into two adult male acquaintances who invited him to walk down the street to join them at a local pub, which he did, according to Hutson.

Hutson says Gerlach is known for taking selfies with students, staff and faculty on and off-campus.

She says the videos and photos posted online show Gerlach interacting with college-aged young adults and taking selfies.

Gerlach released a statement that read:

“When I first started here, and even before, one constant concern that I heard was that our students needed a leader of the university to be present and approachable, someone who can speak to them in their language. That’s what I’ve set out to do at ECU. I regret that these photos are being perceived as anything more than what they are. During the time that I am interim chancellor, I will continue to work toward balancing the university’s budget and improving enrollment and will continue to engage with students and the community. On Wednesday night, I spoke with 125 proud Pirates at Cypress Glen. Because our students are the center of the university, I’ve been working hard to show up – at performances, on tours, at Fall Open House. Students are the reason the university exists.”

Gerlach replaced Chancellor Cecil Staton, who retired in May.

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