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Marquette president to return to post during new leader search

MILWAUKEE (WTAQ) - Father Robert Wild, who retired as Marquette University's president, will return to that post while the school looks for a new leader. 

The 73-year-old Wild will fill in for Scott Pilarz, who announced last week that he's leaving after just over two years at the Milwaukee Jesuit school. 

The university's board announced the resignation in a prepared statement, and Marquette students wondered what was wrong. They said they were used to Pilarz being a lot more personable -- and in a memo Wednesday, he answered some of their questions. 

The 54-year-old Pilarz said he had been a university president for over a decade, and it's the longest he's done anything in his life. Pilarz said he wants to do more research, writing, and teaching.

He also said he was not in a position to fully commit to an upcoming capital fundraising drive for Marquette -- and that contributed to the timing of his departure. Pilarz said the university deserves a president who can spend 5 to 7 years on the capital project -- and that's not in the cards for him, "given my other hopes and desires." 

Pilarz also said he wants to be closer to his aging parents, and help them deal with their health concerns.