Alumni eNewsletter: Board of Trustees Chair Ben Soukup shares highlights of February meeting (Archives)

On February 14-15, the Board of Trustees met for two extremely busy days. It was good to be back on campus, and I especially enjoyed the opportunity to discuss important issues including shared governance, strategic planning, and academic preparation with faculty and student leaders. I appreciate the work of many people across campus who prepared for this productive meeting.

I was pleased to welcome four new board members to the meeting and look forward to having two other members, Ms. Marlee Matlin and Mr. James Macfadden, join us in May. Regrettably, however, I shared the news that Mr. Chris Sullivan, board secretary, recently submitted his resignation from the board. He will be missed. Gallaudet was fortunate to have Chris share his wisdom, insights, and expertise since becoming a trustee in 2003. Trustee Tom Humphries has graciously agreed to take over the duties of board secretary.

A highlight of the board meeting was welcoming Dr. Freeman Hrabowski, president of University of Maryland, Baltimore County, as our luncheon speaker. His words on the ongoing struggle for civil rights were informative and inspirational. His message particularly resonated in February, when the nation celebrates Black History Month.

I want to take this time to share with you some of the action items that resulted from the board meeting. The trustees:

In my report at the February 15 board meeting, I recognized the hard work of those members of the community who served on the Task Force to Review the Presidential Search. The valuable information gathered by this task force will be used as we begin our preliminary discussions on the next presidential search. I want to extend a personal appreciation to each task force member: Board of Trustees representatives Cheryl Heppner (co-chair) and Pamela Lloyd Ogoke; Board of Associates representative James Payne; administrative representative Jon Mitchiner; faculty representatives William Sloboda (co-chair), Dr. Amy Wilson, and Dr. Nancy Kensicki (retired); Clerc Center representative Dorothy Wynne; staff representative Steven Titlebaum, Student Body Government representative Noah Beckman; Graduate Student Association representative Alesia Howard; and alumni representative Mike Kaika.

The board is committed to designing a search that will involve the community in every step of the way. I want to add, however, that due to the University’s current focus on moving beyond accreditation issues, and because of President Davila’s sound leadership in moving Gallaudet forward as an exemplary institution of higher learning, the search for the next president will not be starting for some time.

I look forward to our May meeting and celebrating commencement with the Gallaudet community, especially the Class of 2008.


Ben Soukup

Posted: 14 Mar 2008

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