(BCN) – The chancellor of the California State University system resigned Thursday evening effective immediately, according to a spokesperson for the chancellor’s office.

Chancellor Joseph Castro notified the Board of Trustees of the California State University of his decision to resign.

“I have been honored to serve the California State University for more than eight years, including as its eighth chancellor, and the decision to resign is the most difficult of my professional life,” Castro said. “While I disagree with many aspects of recent media reports and the ensuing commentary, it has become clear to me that resigning at this time is necessary so that the CSU can maintain its focus squarely on its educational mission and the impactful work yet to be done.”

Trustees are finalizing a plan to replace Castro permanently, In the interim, Steve Relyea, executive vice chancellor and chief financial officer, will serve as acting chancellor until an interim chancellor is named. The next trustees meeting will be held March 22 and 23.

Castro’s resignation follows criticism of his handling of sexual assault allegations against a top administrator at Fresno State University.

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