Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Stanley's contract under discussion, faculty senate members demand transparency from trustees

President Samuel L. Stanley Jr.’s contract with Michigan State University is under discussion with the Board of Trustees.

Spokesperson Emily Gerkin Guerrant confirmed that “the board and the president are evaluating his contract,” on Sunday afternoon.

MSU Faculty Senate and Steering Committee president Karen Kelly-Blake and vice president Stephanie Anthony said they are "gravely concerned about the trustees' reported intention to oust President Samuel L. Stanley Jr." in a press release Sunday night. The statement said "that the Board of Trustees communicate with faculty leadership in a deliberative and substantive way before any decisions are made."

"Extraordinary actions require extraordinary justifications," the statement said. "Given our special role in achieving the mission of our university, MSU faculty deserve and demand the transparency the Board of Trustees claims to value."

In an article published on Sunday, the Detroit Free Press said the “tipping point” was the resignation of former Broad College of Business dean Sanjay Gupta. On Aug. 12, the university released a statement saying Gupta had resigned “amid concerns about his leadership of the college and also a failure to report under our mandatory reporting policies.”

Trustee Dan Kelly released a statement announcing the Board of Trustees hired outside legal counsel to investigate the resignation on Aug. 30. The issue was brought up during the board’s Sept. 9 meeting when the trustees were asked to vote on the appointment of professor and interim associate dean Judith Whipple to interim dean of the Broad College of Business.

Whipple was appointed at the meeting by a vote of 5-2 and one abstention.

Kelly stated his opposition to the appointment saying the administration should wait until the investigation has been completed. Trustee Pat O’Keefe agreed, saying he thought the board should give Gupta a “due process hearing.”

MSU's last full president before Stanley was Lou Anna K. Simon. She resigned in 2018 following ex-MSU doctor Larry Nassar's sentencing of 175 years in prison.

No trustees responded immediately to phone calls and emails for comment.

Editor's note: This article was edited at 7:20 p.m. to add comments from Academic Governance.

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