Joseph I. Castro has resigned as California State University (CSU) Chancellor, a news release from the CSU Board of Trustees said Thursday evening.
The decision comes after USA Today’s investigative story detailing Castro’s mishandling of sexual harassment complaints against a former employee while at Fresno State, and further criticism of Castros’ handling of the situation from Fresno State community members.
“While I disagree with many aspects of recent media reports and the ensuing commentary, it has become clear to me that resigning at this time is necessary so that the CSU can maintain its focus squarely on its educational mission and the impactful work yet to be done,” said Castro in the press release.
Castro served as Fresno State’s president for seven years and was appointed CSU Chancellor in January 2021. His resignation is effective immediately.
“I have been honored to serve the California State University for more than eight years, including as its eighth chancellor, and the decision to resign is the most difficult of my professional life,” he said.
The CSU Board of Trustees is finalizing a plan to replace Castro’s position, and CSU’s Executive Vice Chancellor and Chief Financial Officer Steve Relyea will serve as acting chancellor. An interim chancellor will be named at a later date.
According to the news release, the Board of Trustees plans to call for a vote to conduct system-wide assessments in the CSU to improve Title IX’s “innovation, accountability and response.”
These assessments will first begin in March at Fresno State, the news release said.