An interim leader was appointed Wednesday to guide California State University Chico while president Paul J. Zingg recovers from heart bypass surgery, officials said.
Rollin C. Richmond was named acting president of the Northern California campus and will assume duties next week, Cal State Chancellor Timothy P. White said in a statement.
Richmond, 70, previously served as president of Humboldt State University for 12 years before retiring in 2014.
His familiarity with the region would provide a "seamless transition," White said.
"Dr. Richmond has extensive experience leading a university and his focus on students, diversity and sustainability parallel the vision and values of CSU Chico," the chancellor said.
Richmond has maintained involvement with Cal State, serving on several science and technology commissions. He earned a bachelor's degree in zoology from San Diego State University and a doctorate in genetics from Rockefeller University in New York.
Zingg, 69, is recuperating after undergoing surgery Sunday at a local hospital. He is expected to make a full recovery, said Chico State spokeswoman Sarah Langford.
He was named president of Chico in 2004 after serving as provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.