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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    “Likins pops in to work, surprises office staff”

    President Peter Likins and his wife Patricia surprised cabinet members Monday when they stopped in on a meeting to say hello, officials said.

    “”He came back to reassure his staff that he is back and recovering,”” said Linda Stapleton, executive assistant to the president.

    Likins and his wife were on their way to a doctor’s appointment when they dropped in on unsuspecting administrators to share surgery details, said Edith Auslander, vice president and senior associate to the president.

    “”We were all fascinated because we all wanted to know how he is doing,”” she said of the emotional meeting between administrators. “”He is definitely missed.””

    In a letter to the campus community, Likins said his prognosis is excellent, but it will take some time for him to return to his “”customarily good health.””

    Recovery from surgery may take up to eight weeks for the president, but in the meantime, he said in the letter, he is walking a mile each day, catching up on sleep and will be slowly expanding his work activities.

    In the letter, Likins thanked the many medical specialists involved with his treatment and said in the span of one day he was “”brought back from the edge of death.””

    Likins was released from University Medical Center on April 19, one week after he had emergency heart surgery to replace a part of his pacemaker and repair a muscle wall near his heart.

    Likins will retire June 30 after 9 years at the UA and 24 years as a university president.

    Provost George Davis, executive vice president of the university, Joel Valdez, senior vice president for business affairs, and Saundra Taylor, vice president for campus life, have assumed presidential responsibilities until Likins returns to office.

    In the letter, Likins said he never planned to end his presidency recovering from surgery, but intends to “”cross the finish line on my feet and pass the baton of leadership to Robert Shelton as he assumes the presidency of the University of Arizona.””

    Get-well wishes can be sent via e-mail to or by mail to the President’s Office, 1401 E. University Blvd., Post Office Box 210066.

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