WORCESTER, Mass. (AP) – Outgoing University of Massachusetts President William Bulger says he is looking forward to a future of “uncertainty and freedom and of making new choices” after his departure from office Monday.

“It’s all uncertain, but that’s all right. We’re kind of happy with that – the notion of making new choices,” Bulger said Monday, during the UMass Walk to Cure Cancer. “That’s a sudden realization for me. I don’t think I expected that feeling to be so dominant.”

Bulger, who is ending 42 years of public service as a state representative, senator and university president, resigned in early August after months of pressure from Republican Gov. Mitt Romney and Attorney General Tom Reilly, a fellow Democrat.

Both accused him of putting his loyalty to his brother, fugitive mobster James “Whitey” Bulger, before his duties to the university and the commonwealth.

As he contemplated his tumultuous year Monday, Bulger said he was “fine with all of that.”

“Whatever has come, it happens,” Bulger said. “We can manage. Bear in mind, I had seven and a half wonderful years.”

Filling Bulger’s position until a permanent replacement is chosen is Jack Wilson, leader of UMass’ online education program, who was selected by university trustees last week.

AP-ES-09-01-03 1633EDT

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