Talk about timing!
USC announced today Rick Caruso was elected as chair of the Board of Trustees, succeeding John Mork.
Today was the annual business meeting of the board, and it could not have come at a better time. Caruso is the face the trustees want to lead the board during a crisis. He served on the Coliseum Commission, L.A. Police Commission and was a commissioner for the L.A. Dept. of Water and Power.
Mork got burned last week when he issued the Board of Trustees’ statement of support for Max Nikias. He also did not want to be in the spot light.
“Submerged whales don’t get harpooned,” he told Forbes in 2011.
Caruso said Thursday it is vital to establish “checks and balances within the university and have stronger collaborative engagement among the board, the president’s office, the Academic Senate, Staff Assembly, the student body and alumni.”
He also announced, “the Special Committee of the Board of Trustees has retained O’Melveny & Myers LLP to conduct an independent investigation into improper conduct and reporting failures at the student health center.”
He is best known as the owner of shopping centers like the Grove at Farmers Market in West L.A. and the Americana at Brand in Glendale.