Statement from Regents chair on the passing of John Bardo


I am deeply saddened by the loss of President John Bardo. On behalf of the Kansas Board of Regents, I extend our deepest condolences to Deborah Bardo and the rest of John’s family.

John had a unique and transformational vision for Wichita State University. He led the development of Innovation Campus, which brought new buildings and improvements to Wichita State that are remarkable. However, even more important are the opportunities for students that he worked so hard to create. His action positioned the university as an economic driver and a leader in applied learning.

John also loved Wichita. During his updates to the Board, he frequently spoke of Wichita State’s location as a major strength. He saw the city and university’s relationship as mutually beneficial, with Wichita State helping to drive economic growth and prosperity in the region. 

Even now, Wichita State University will continue to benefit from John’s leadership as the team he put in place leads the university through this period of transition. The Board is confident that Acting President Rick Muma and the rest of Wichita State’s leadership team will continue to handle the management and operations of the university during this time. We will make announcements about the search for a permanent replacement at the appropriate time. 

Along with the Wichita State community, the Regents mourn John’s passing. We will miss him as a leader and a person and are thankful for the opportunity to have worked with him. Wichita State University, the city of Wichita, and the state of Kansas are better places because of John Bardo.