PULLMAN, Wash. — Douglas Baker, vice provost for academic affairs, has agreed to take charge of Washington State University’s Office of the Provost until Feb. 1 when the provost position is filled permanently.

“Doug knows the office and the issues, and I have confidence in his abilities and judgment,” WSU President V. Lane Rawlins said. Baker will work closely with the new provost, Robert Bates, and Rawlins during the next seven weeks.

Bates, formerly with Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, plans to be at WSU several days in January to organize his office and attend the university’s Board of Regents meeting on Jan. 25.

Ron Hopkins has served as interim provost since June 2000. His last duties were to preside during WSU’s fall commencement on Saturday (Dec. 15).