Longtime Penn State trustee Jesse Arnelle has withdrawn from the alumni trustee election this spring, leaving just one incumbent and 30 challengers vying for three seats.
The notice about Arnelle was posted recently to the candidate listing on the board of trustees’ website. Arnelle’s name has the word “withdrew” next to it.
It’s not immediately known why Arnelle pulled out of the race, although the former All-American Nittany Lion basketball player faced a formidable challenge in his bid for re-election. None of the incumbents have been re-elected since the Jerry Sandusky scandal erupted and the board, including Arnelle, voted to fire coach Joe Paterno.
Arnelle, of San Francisco, has been a trustee since 1969 and served as president of the board in 1996 and 1997.
Arnelle’s withdrawal leaves a fellow longtime trustee, Joel Myers, as the lone incumbent.
Trustee Marianne Alexander is the third incumbent whose seat is up for election, but she decided not to run again.
Given Arnelle’s 45 years of service on the board and his professional and university achievements, it is likely Arnelle’s supporters on the board will nominate him for the honorable “emeritus” status. The board bestowed that honor on former trustees Anne Riley and David Jones last summer.
Alumni voting will start April 10 and continue through May 8.
In an effort to increase voter turnout, the university will send out ballots to any alumnus who has an email address on file.