Former OU President David Boren separated from the university June 12. Boren, who served as president from 1994 to 2018, gave up his president emeritus status in a resignation letter to the OU Board of Regents. Boren has been investigated for allegations of sexual harassment by the Jones Day law firm on behalf of the university, and the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation began its own investigation regarding sexual harassment allegations in March.
Following the separation of OU and Boren, The Daily created a timeline of some important events during Boren’s 25-year tenure as president and president emeritus:
1994 — Boren joins OU as the university’s 13th president.
1995 — Boren creates a new retirement program and an American Indian Task Force. He cuts administrative budget by $2 million and eliminates 50 positions on campus. He creates a President’s Greek Community Task Force, implementing new alcohol policies and diversity in recruitment. The Duchess of York visits campus and donates $150,000 to OU’s Health Sciences Center. He expands Couch Center and begins to renovate the Oklahoma Memorial Union. Boren is inaugurated as OU president Sept. 15, 1995.
1997 — President Boren creates the Honors College as a separate academic unit of the university.
1999 — Margaret Thatcher, former British prime minister, speaks at OU. The university’s petroleum engineering program is ranked top 10 in the nation.
2001 — Mikhail Gorbachev, former Soviet head of state, and U.S. Sen. John McCain speak at OU. The university’s softball and football national championship-winning teams, along with Boren and Joe Castiglione, are honored at the White House by former President George W. Bush. The National Security Education Program names a scholarship and fellowship after Boren, and he announces construction of the current National Weather Center building.
2002 — Boren adds “Gaylord Family” to the football stadium’s name following a donation from the Gaylords and regent approval.
Sept. 26, 2005 — Boren returns to work more than six weeks after having surgery for a herniated disc.
2011 — Boren creates the College of International Studies.
2015 — Boren reprimands the SAE fraternity after a video of the fraternity singing a racist chant is leaked. This isn't the first time SAE members have been suspended for a racist incident. OU’s SAE chapter is permanently closed.
March 3, 2017 — OU is ranked No. 1 among both public and private universities for number of National Merit Scholars.
March 20, 2017 — Boren has a heart bypass surgery, continuing to serve as president during his recovery.
Sept. 20, 2017 — Boren announces his retirement as president of the University of Oklahoma, effective June 30, 2018.
April 14, 2018 — Boren suffers a minor stroke while speaking at a Bob Stoops statue dedication. Boren goes on to make a full recovery.
Dec. 10, 2018 — The Daily reports the Jones Day law firm is being employed by the university to investigate misreporting of alumni donations to U.S. News & World Report during Boren’s tenure. Sources tell The Daily the investigation began as early as the summer of 2018.
Feb. 13 — The Oklahoman reports OU is investigating allegations of sexual harassment against Boren, and Jones Day is conducting the investigation. Boren, through his lawyer Bob Burke, denies the allegations.
Feb. 20 — The chair of OU’s Board of Regents Leslie Rainbolt-Forbes releases a statement saying the board will actively and aggressively do the right thing, but is not rushing to any judgments. The board also discusses an “ongoing personnel matter” in a Feb. 20 executive session.
March 26 — NonDoc publishes a story in which two OU graduates describe instances of sexual battery involving Boren and former OU Vice President Tripp Hall. The graduates, Jess Eddy and Levi Hilliard, allege the events took place from 2010 to 2012. Boren’s lawyers, as well as Hall, deny the allegations.
March 28 — The Daily reports the OSBI has begun its own investigation into sexual harassment allegations against Boren.
April 9 — The Board of Regents is briefed by Jones Day investigators on the law firm’s personnel investigation into sexual harassment allegations against Boren. The meeting remains in executive session for the entire six-hour briefing, the second special meeting of the semester.
April 24 — The Board of Regents holds its third special meeting in executive session to discuss “personnel investigation(s).”
May 8 — Boren requests a meeting with the Board of Regents amid ongoing investigations into sexual harassment allegations against him. The regents would later deny his request to meet.
May 25 — The Oklahoman reports the Jones Day report has been given to the OSBI.
May 28 — Boren accuser Jess Eddy’s account of his trip to Houston with Boren is called “generally credible” in a four-page excerpt of the Jones Day report. Eddy was allowed to view the pages of the report that were related to the information he shared with Jones Day, and he shared that information with The Daily and other news organizations.
June 5 — The Oklahoman reports the university has paid Jones Day over $1 million for the investigations into data misreporting and sexual harassment allegations against OU personnel.
June 12 — Following months of investigation by Jones Day and the OSBI, Boren resigns his position as president emeritus and instructor at OU. Boren also gives up some other benefits he was continuing to receive, such as free tickets to sporting events. A university spokesperson says Boren’s statue, the Honors College, professorships, scholarships and other things named for Boren will remain at this time, though that decision could change depending on the outcome of the OSBI investigation or potential grand jury proceedings.