UPDATE: Michigan State board approves school's athletic director

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EAST LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - Tuesday morning, MSU held a meeting for the official appointment of Athletic Director Bill Beekman. The Board of Trustees had to vote him in.

Bill Beekman has been serving as an Interim Athletic Director for Michigan State University since earlier this year.

The Board of Trustees voted unanimously to appoint Beekman to his job on a permanent basis.

Tuesday's vote came at a special meeting to consider Beekman for the job he's held on an interim basis since early February.

It came a day after the school introduced him as the pick for the post.

Board members and Michigan State Interim President John Engler say Beekman is the best person for the job.

“As I spoke with our coaches and consulted with trustees about a possible search, I heard from virtually everyone that they love the job Bill is doing,” Interim President John Engler said on Monday. “I’m very confident Bill will excel. He is a person of integrity, attentive, a great listener, someone who really knows the university and he has a calming influence.”

Beekman took over on an interim basis shortly after athletic director Mark Hollis retired following the sex abuse scandal involving former sports doctor Larry Nassar and just before ESPN reported allegations of sexual assault and violence against women involving Michigan State football and basketball players. The report questioned the athletic department's handling those cases.

Beekman has also been a vice president of the school and secretary of its board.

His new job will entail overseeing MSU’s 25 varsity sports teams as well as the care of more than 800 Spartan student athletes. The position provides leadership in the areas of sports management, game operations, financial administration, personnel, fundraising, corporate interaction, facility management, marketing and communication, according to a press release sent out by MSU.

“Leading the proud tradition of Spartan athletics is a great honor,” Beekman said. “Since I stepped in as interim athletic director, my focus has been the health, safety and education of our student athletes. My job, and the job of our department, is to give them the tools and support they need to be successful on the field, successful in the classroom and, most importantly, successful in life after they leave MSU. Spartan athletics has a championship history, and we will continue to chase those championship dreams, doing so with integrity and always striving to improve in every area.”

And, Beekman will be stepping down from his Board of Trustees position as secretary.