Mark Rotenberg has resigned as general counsel at the University of Minnesota to become vice president and general counsel of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Md., the U of M announced today. He will move to his new position on June 3.

Rotenberg has been general counsel at the U for 20 years and his career was intertwined with many of the biggest news stories that came out of the university, many having to do with athletics. Those included the paper-writing scandal under Gopher basketball coach Clem Haskins, the negotiation of the naming rights and sponsorship of the TCF Bank Football Stadium, and the lease for the Vikings to play on campus after the Metrodome roof collapse.

He served under four presidents and 11 Board of Regents chairs.

Chuck Tombarge said in a news release that there have been no major infractions in any sports for a decade since the Haskins scandal. Athletic compliance officials now report to the general counsel and the provost. It noted his "litigation successes" in the recovery of more than $580 million in money through litigation, calling it among the highest recovery rates for general counsel offices in the United States.

He also created "an in-house team of legal experts in transactional law which covers a range of legal issues including technology commercialization, patents, copyrights, trademarks, real estate, public finance and other areas," the U news release said.

Rotenberg is quoted in the release as saying, "It has been a great honor to represent the University of Minnesota as general counsel for the past two decades. While it's terribly difficult to leave the U, and the Golden Gophers will always have a place in my heart, Johns Hopkins offers a unique and very special professional opportunity that I cannot pass up."

The release also quoted University President Erc Kaler as saying, "Mark has epitomized the kind of integrity and accountability that all public institutions like ours strive for. His record of success spans the legal spectrum from litigation to transactional matters, to building one of the finest offices of general counsel at any university in the country. I will miss his legal acumen and his deep knowledge of the University of Minnesota."

Linda Cohen, chair of the Board of Regents, said in the release that the regents are "deeply grateful to Mark Rotenberg for his years of distinguished service to the University of Minnesota." She said he had provided "wise counsel" to the board and its 11 chairs and it was with "mixed feelings" that she congratulated him on his appointment to "prestigious" Johns Hopkins. "The University of Minnesota will miss his thoughful expertise and guidance," she stated.

Rotenberg was not immediately available for an interview. Tombarge said he was meeting with staff at Johns Hopkins today.