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University of Colorado’s Board of Regents is taking the next step to prevent the release of the name and application materials of a finalist for system president in a search that resulted in Mark Kennedy’s hire.

Attorneys representing the Board of Regents filed a partial motion to stay with the Colorado Court of Appeals on Wednesday, two weeks after Denver District Court Judge A. Bruce Jones denied a similar motion filed in that court.

Jones ordered CU to release the names and application materials of six finalists for system president to the Daily Camera in March 6 ruling, which found that CU violated the Colorado Open Records Act by not previously releasing the records. The Camera had filed a lawsuit against the university system, asking that it be compelled to the release names and application materials of the six people the regents interviewed before choosing Kennedy.

CU has also filed an appeal of Jones’ ruling with the Court of Appeals.

The Wednesday motion was filed by Attorney General Phil Weiser, Assistant Attorney General Michael Kotlarczyk, Senior Assistant Attorney General Skippere Spear and Special Assistant Attorney General Erica Weston.

The attorney general’s office has always been a party to the case, said system spokesman Ken McConnellogue, though Weiser was not listed on earlier court filings in the case.

The motion reiterated CU’s arguments that the university system will be irreparably harmed if it releases the name of the sixth finalist, particularly because the Daily Camera is a member of the press.

“The identity of the sixth applicant may well end up in the public domain if the records are produced, discouraging others from applying for executive positions with the state due to fear of similar disclosures and resulting adverse employment actions,” the motion states. “If disclosure of these materials is ordered, there is simply no unringing that bell.”

The university system already released the names and application materials of the other finalists because that information was leaked and published by the Colorado Independent in December. President Mark Kennedy’s application was already public.

CU maintains that the five other people interviewed by the Board of Regents were not finalists for president and did not undergo the same public vetting that Kennedy did, according to the motion.

“Denial of a stay is also contrary to the public interest because it will negatively impact future applicants and state employers,” the motion states. “The district court’s ruling creates substantial uncertainty as to whether state entities, including the university, can honor confidentiality promises made to applicants for state employment.”

The motion also raises the possibility that releasing the records could have “constitutional ramifications” and violate the sixth applicant’s constitutional right to privacy.

The Board of Regents did not vote to appeal the partial motion for stay to the higher court, McConnellogue said, because the initial vote to appeal the case encompasses all related filings.

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