Chancellor Kent Hance intends to announce on Friday that he will retire in the summer of 2014, sources at the Texas Tech University System confirmed late Thursday.
The system's third chancellor, Hance has served in the position since Dec 1, 2006.
Prior to entering higher education administration, Hance had a storied career in Texas politics, which included stints in the Texas Senate, Congress and the Texas Railroad Commission, as well as unsuccessful campaigns for U.S. Senate and for governor. He has the distinction of being the only person to defeat President George W. Bush in an election. Immediately before taking his current and soon-to-be-former gig, he was a partner at Austin-based law firm Hance Scarborough.
At the system — which includes Texas Tech University and Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center in Lubbock, Angelo State University in San Angelo and Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center at El Paso — Hance set a goal of raising $1 billion for its capital campaign, and it surpassed that mark earlier this year.
“Raising $1 billion is a significant achievement, even in a good economy," he said in a statement in February, "and has put us into an elite group of higher education institutions.”
Hance also weathered a lengthy media firestorm and ensuing legal battle following the termination of popular Texas Tech head football coach Mike Leach in 2009 over allegations regarding his treatment of player Adam James, the son of former ESPN college football analyst and former U.S. Senate candidate Craig James.
Hance is one of several university chancellors in Texas, past and present, who came to his post by way of politics, and speculation about who might replace him initially focused on state Sen. Robert Duncan and U.S. Rep. Randy Neugebauer, both Republicans of Lubbock. A call to Duncan's office was not returned, and a spokesman for Neugebauer said he was focused on serving his district.