Monday was the first day on the job for University of Illinois President Timothy Killeen. He replaces Robert Easter, who retired after serving as president since 2012. Killeen, who comes to town from the State University of New York, says he has had meetings with area lawmakers and the governor to try and get the proposed cut to the university of $200 million reduced. Killeen says the university provides value for the state, and he says that while he’s an optimist, he and other university officials are preparing for the worst.
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Killeen says the university recognizes that the state has an authentic fiscal crisis, so he says the U. of I. understands it has to take some responsibility for addressing that crisis. He also says his relationship with faculty and students and having a shared governance approach are going to be key parts of his administration.