The Scripps Research Institute CEO and President Michael Marletta intends to step down, according to the organization’s board of trustees.

Marletta had recently been criticized for his attempts to merge TSRI with the University of Southern California while leaving faculty members out of the loop of such a key decision.

Richard Gephardt, board chair of TSRI, said the board is working with Marletta on a possible transition plan.

“Any such transition will engage all key constituencies in a dialogue about the future direction of this storied institution,” Gephardt said in a statement.

The Scripps Research Institute is in La Jolla with a satellite campus in Jupiter, Florida.