UT Austin courting Rex Tillerson to be next chancellor

The University of Texas at Austin is looking to hire outgoing Secretary of State Rex Tillerson as its next chancellor, according to the Wall Street Journal. A UT alum told the WSJ that several members of the search committee are making "a hard push" to put the former Exxon Mobil CEO in charge, but they haven't officially offered him the job.

Rex Tillerson, who served as the 69th United States Secretary of State under President Donald Trump, attended the University of Texas at Austin in the 1970's. He graduated in 1975.

Tillerson is formally set to leave his post as secretary of state on March 31.

In a brief final farewell address to State Department employees on Thursday, Tillerson urged them to protect their personal integrity and to strive to respect one another. "This can be a very mean-spirited town," he said to laughter from a crowd of several hundred people gathered in the main lobby of the building. "But you don't have to choose to participate in that," he said to applause.

The UT Austin system chancellor job became available when Chancellor Bill McRaven announced his plans to retire at the end of the academic year.