Five lose jobs in administrative shake-up at Eastern Kentucky University

Scott Cason
Scott Cason

An administrative shake-up at Eastern Kentucky University has left five people without jobs, and many others have had to apply for new positions.

Scott Cason, the vice president for communications and marketing, who arrived at EKU in April, said the reorganization affected his division and two others headed by recently appointed executives.

"The president (Michael Benson) said now it's time to boldly advance the university," Cason said. "We looked at the excellent staff we had, but we had some disconnects within those units."

The other departments affected were student success, headed by Laurie Carter, and university development, lead by Nick Perlick.

Cason said he wanted to create a digitally savvy consolidated communications and marketing division, rather than a public relations department. Two people under Cason lost jobs, including former university spokesman Marc Whitt.

Those employees and three others who lost jobs in the reorganization can remain internal candidates for other jobs on campus for one year, Cason said.

The Richmond university's revamped development and alumni division will combine fundraising with donor engagement, Cason said. The overhauled student success division will have two assistant vice presidents — one for enrollment, retention and graduation, and one for student life, who will oversee student conduct and residential living, among other things.

"We need to become more nimble, we need to hold ourselves more accountable than we have in the past," Cason said. "Our student population is not rising. We have to compete more for those students and we need to compete more for the students from outside our area, too."

After becoming president of the 16,454-student university last year, Benson oversaw a $23 million budget cut, which affected nearly all areas of campus.