What NOT to look for in the next university chief

Let’s talk about student fees — not my housing costs

Former University of Minnesota President Mark Yudof is upsetting colleagues at the University of California, where his housing shenanigans have cost the cash-strapped university system $600,000 over the past two years.

When he recently vacated his rented house in Oakland Hills:

in his haste to get out, he left behind thousands of dollars of damage to the hardwood floors and Venetian plastered walls.

Sorry, students and taxpayers. It’s not Yudof’s problem. It’s yours.

This from the landlord whose house he damaged:

“At some point, I got a call from the general counsel, and I’m like, ‘Why am I talking to the general counsel?’ ” said Mr. Mulligan, 40, a boyish Hong Kong-based business consultant and a U.C. Berkeley graduate who bought the Oakland house in 2003 after selling his bike-messenger bag company, Timbuk2. “To me it’s like, ‘Is this how they spend their time?’ ” Mr. Mulligan said.

Among one of the oddball issues was the university’s failure to report a water leak in the house early on, and by the time it was reported and fixed, the house had racked up a $5,000 water bill for 1.2 million gallons.

Then there was the tens of thousands of dollars to move Yudof first from Texas and then out of the Oakland Hills house and into a hotel.

… the lavish spending and the numerous hours spent by university officials managing Mr. Yudof’s personal affairs have chafed some members of his team.

“He essentially turned the Office of the President into his personal staff,” a university official said.