JoAnne A. Epps, the acting president of Temple University in Philadelphia whose tenure came at a turbulent time for the school, died on Tuesday after becoming ill onstage at a memorial service, the university said.
Ms. Epps, who was appointed in April, was taken to a hospital after becoming ill at the memorial service and was pronounced dead at around 3:15 p.m., the university said in a statement.
“There are no words that can describe the gravity and sadness of this loss,” the university said in a letter that was signed by the chair of the board of trustees, the chief operating officer and the provost. “President Epps was a devoted servant and friend who represented the best parts of Temple.”
The university did not share the cause of death. Ms. Epps was 72, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Ms. Epps’s appointment as Temple’s acting president came after the resignation of the previous president, Jason Wingard, whose tenure was plagued by worsening crime around campus, a strike by graduate students and a loss of confidence in his leadership among some faculty members.
Ms. Epps had a been a member of Temple’s faculty for more than three decades. Before joining Temple, she was an assistant U.S. attorney in Philadelphia and a deputy city attorney in Los Angeles.
This is a developing story.