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January 29, 2010

Crain's: Zimmer dating classics professor, separated from wife

President Robert Zimmer is dating classics professor Shadi Bartsch, Crain's Chicago Business reported today, after separating from his wife Terese in early September. He has also moved out of the presidental house on University Avenue and 59th Street.

Zimmer, whose wife is the director of strategic initiatives at the Urban Education Institute, is dating a professor, University spokesman Steve Kloehn said. Crain's quoted "campus sources" naming Bartsch, but Kloehn did not identify the professor.

Kloehn added that Terese Zimmer will continue to live in the president's house in Zimmer's absence, though Zimmer would still "conduct presidential business and host University events" in the house. The house is provided by the University for the president and his family.

“President Zimmer has been separated from his wife since the beginning of September," Kloehn said. "This is a matter for the family, and we hope people will respect their privacy.”

Trustee memberss supported Zimmer, according to Crain's:

One university trustee calls the affair a personal matter and says he still has confidence in Mr. Zimmer.

"On this personal thing, that’s up to others to handle," says trustee George Ranney. "He’s doing a fine job."

Board of Trustees chair Andrew Alper released a similar statement. “President Zimmer has been forthcoming with me and with the board regarding his family situation. We see this as a personal matter, not an issue of university governance,” he said.

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