Tony Brinkley Credit: John Clarke Russ

The University of Maine placed an English professor on paid administrative leave after receiving “complaints from students,” a university official said.

Robert “Tony” Brinkley was placed on leave Jan. 2, Margaret Nagle, senior director for public relations and operations, said Friday morning. Brinkley will remain on leave until the university completes an investigation.

“An investigation is ongoing, and pending the end of the investigation, the university has made no determination whether Professor Brinkley has violated any university policies,” Nagle said.

Brinkley declined to comment Thursday afternoon.

“The university will ensure that it protects both the students’ rights and Professor Brinkley’s rights throughout the investigation, and will take appropriate action(s) as determined necessary only at the conclusion of the investigation,” she said.

Brinkley is one of two professors at the university currently on paid administrative leave based on complaints about their conduct. Tom Mikotowicz, a professor of theater, was placed on administrative leave on Dec. 11 after the university received multiple calls from students alleging “confidential concerns,” Nagle previously told the Bangor Daily News.

Brinkley, a graduate of Yale University and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, has taught at UMaine since 1983. He served as chair of the English department from 1999 to 2004. He teaches courses in English romantic poetry, Renaissance poetry, critical theory, Fascist studies, translation studies and film. Brinkley is also a senior faculty associate at the University’s Franco-American Centre.

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