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Press Release

Chancellor's Statement on External Fresno State Investigation



Student walking through campus under the Japanese cherry blossom trees

The following statement can be attributed to CSU Interim Chancellor Jolene Koester:

"In March 2022, the California State University Board of Trustees (Trustees) commissioned a neutral external investigation to review how administrators responded to reports and complaints of alleged Title IX violations by former Vice President for Student Affairs, Dr. Frank Lamas at Fresno State​. The independent investigation is now complete, and
the CSU has received the findings​​​.

We want to first thank the Fresno State community members who came forward to share their experiences courageously and transparently. The report concluded that while the campus took action to explore and address each of the reports made, some responses substantially complied with applicable policy while others did not.  The report identified among several issues, the President's failure to more rigorously address reports of Lamas's alleged misconduct as a notable factor that negatively impacted the effectiveness of the campus's responses. 

The independent external investigation was launched to enable the CSU and the Trustees to learn from the past and to prevent such issues from occurring in the future. To assist the CSU system, we have initiated an independent assessment of Title IX practices across all 23 universities and the Chancellor's Office. The CSU has retained Gina Maisto Smith and Leslie Gomez, the chair and vice chair of the Institutional Response Group at Cozen O'Connor to lead this comprehensive Title IX systemwide assessment.

We also have enlisted an independent board governance advisor to review CSU's board structure and function with the goals of enhancing board relations while strengthening our governance structure including modernizing leadership hiring processes.

We are proud of Fresno State President Jiménez-Sandoval for proactively initiating a Title IX Task Force on campus to create a safer and more equitable campus. To learn more about the Task Force and how Fresno State is bolstering its programs and practices to safeguard against discrimination and harassment on campus, we encourage you to visit Title IX Task Force website."

About the California State University

The California State University is the largest system of four-year higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, 477,000 students and 56,000 faculty and staff. Nearly 40 percent of the CSU's undergraduate students transfer from California Community Colleges. The CSU was created in 1960 with a mission of providing high-quality, affordable education to meet the ever-changing needs of California. With its commitment to quality, opportunity and student success, the CSU is renowned for superb teaching, innovative research and for producing job-ready graduates. Each year, the CSU awards more than 132,000 degrees. One in every 20 Americans holding a college degree is a graduate of the CSU and our alumni are 4 million strong. Connect with and learn more about the CSU in the CSU NewsCenter.​​