Former UW-Oshkosh chancellor says no personal gain in foundation deals

Former UW-Oshkosh chancellor says no personal gain in foundation deals

A former University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh chancellor accused of illegally transferring millions from the university to its foundation says he didn’t personally benefit.

The Board of Regents have sued former Chancellor Richard Wells and former Vice Chancellor of Administrative Services Thomas Sonnleitner alleging they illegally transferred $11.3 million to cover construction projects between 2010 and 2014.

Attorneys for Wells filed court documents Thursday saying financial decisions he made as chancellor were done with the board’s knowledge and as part of his job duties.

Wells retired in August 2014. He’s asking that the lawsuit be dismissed and that the university pay damages to him, including the cost of defending himself against the lawsuit.

The Legislature’s audit committee recently authorized a review of University of Wisconsin System schools’ relationships with their private foundations.

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