Santa Clara University president resigns after reports of inappropriate behavior

Santa Clara University President Father Kevin O’Brien announced Wednesday he is resigning and has entered a rehab program for his use of alcohol and stress management.

In an email to faculty and students, Father O’Brien said concerns were raised in early March about his behavior in certain social settings that “did not meet the highest standards of decorum expected of me as a Jesuit.”

The email went on to say that after an investigation it was determined that he enter a “therapeutic program” to address his alcohol use and stress management issues. Father O’Brien says the program is expected to take four to six months.

Here’s a statement from university officials in response to Father O’Brien’s announcement:

Following the conclusion of an independent investigation undertaken on behalf of the USA West Province, Father O’Brien notified the Santa Clara University Board of Trustees of his resignation as President on May 9, which the Board of Trustees accepted on May 10. The Board of Trustees will immediately establish a process to conduct a search for its next President and Lisa Kloppenberg will continue to serve as Acting President of Santa Clara University until the next President is identified.

Father O’Brien was named Santa Clara University president in early 2019 and started his position in July of that year. 

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