Seven candidates are still in the running for five seats on the University of Minnesota's Board of Regents, after a joint legislative committee deadlocked on four of the finalists this week.

That means the full House and Senate will have to make the final call, in a vote expected later this month.

The candidates include a two-term member of the board, Dr. Patricia Simmons, who previously had said she would not seek a third term but stepped in after another finalist, Dr. Claire Bender, dropped out.

A joint committee of House and Senate members split, largely on party lines, on whether to reappoint Simmons, a Mayo Clinic physician, for another six years, or replace her with Randy Simonson, CEO and president of Grazix Animal Health in Worthington, Minn. Both are vying for the seat representing the First Congressional District. Simmons had more support among Senate Democrats, while Simonson was the favorite of House Republicans.

Dr. Michael Belzer, a physician from Edina, and Paula Prahl, a former Best Buy executive who lives in Long Lake, will compete for the seat in the Third Congressional District. Senate members favored Belzer, while Prahl was favored by House committee members.

The joint panel, which includes members of the higher education committees from both chambers, agreed on a single nominee for each of the three remaining seats:

Fourth District: incumbent Richard Beeson Jr., a St. Paul banker who now is chair of the Board of Regents.

Sixth District: Michael Hsu, of Blaine, the president of TeeMaster Corp.

Seventh District: Thomas Anderson, a funeral-home director from Alexandria.

Maura Lerner