The plan called for a vote by secret ballot, but UH regents were candid about who they supported for president and why.
David Lassner will serve as UH president continuously under a deal with no specific end date.
Regents seemed to be cautious about the relationship being negotiated, reluctant to call it "at will."
Chaiman John Holzman simply asked the public to look at the president's agenda – goals he believes are achievable in five years time.
It is a nod to contracts with other presidents gone bad, with payouts that this board wants to avoid.
"If you look at how we are structuring this contract, it is more to do with the past than it does with the future. We are trying to avoid that,"Holzman said.
"I want to make clear is there is a lot of work to do. We are fully confident President Lassner will do it. We expect him to do it. We will be evaluating him annually,"
But the vote didn’t come without a call by two regents to delay the process and put off a vote.
Ben Kudo and Jeff Portnoy felt they couldn't support the process and obstained from voting.
"One of the reasons why I am not in favor of a contract is not that either gentlemen cannot do the job. It is that I don’t think either had an opportunity to develop a track record," said new regent Jeff Portnoy. "One has never led a university and one has only served as an interim,"
But that motion failed.
Two members, Coralie Matayoshi and Tom Shigemoto supported General Frank Wiercinski and even a former mayor came out to support the general noting his expertise with diplomacy and politics is notable.
“If you think Frank Wiercinski is going to come in here and make everybody jump around and give a salute, you do not know the man, at all." said Peter Carlisle.
But 11 of the regents felt Lassner was the right choice for stability for the University of Hawaii.
Neither Lassner or Wiercinski was on hand for today's meeting.
Both issued statements.
Lassner said "I am humbled and honored by the trust being placed in me by the board of regents,"
Wiercinski issued a statement congratulating Lassner.
" I would like to particularly thank those who nominated me for this position, asked me to serve and further acknowledge their support and confidence in my leadership abilities," said Wiercinski.