Futile update #2: Provosts gone wild

2/17/2013: Time to get real. Gottfredson’s not going to fire Bean. He’s not even going to fire Geller. It’s up to us faculty. Sure, we could fight with conventional weapons, like Tublitz’s senate resolution. But that would take years. No, this requires a really stupid and futile gesture. And

So get to work. Post your list of our Provost’s five two greatest accomplishments, and suggested wording in the comments. I’ll add some fluff and a signature,

and send the letter off to academic headhunter firms. Surely there’s a Dental Hygienics College somewhere in Dubai that needs a leader.

2/16/2013: I thought I’d repost this classic, since it bears on both the never-ending Bean and public records issues. Note the part at the end, explaining Berdahl’s revocation of the fee-waiver policy which had been instituted by Lariviere after a year of hard work and perseverance (some have called it intimidation) by the Senate Transparency Committee.

5/4/2012: When Richard Lariviere found out about the secret Frohnmayer/Bellotti deal he wrote:

“This institution did not follow acceptable business practices in the past. That will not be repeated by my administration.”

Apparently that message didn’t get through to John Moseley, Jim Bean, and Lorraine Davis. I wrote a little about their latest deal here. All in all this involves maybe $60,000 in UO money, plus a bunch more from OSU. In addition to the questionable UO contract addition, there are some expense issues. In a nutshell, after a 2009 audit investigation raised a few issues with Moseley’s contracts and expenses – he was charging UO for his travel between his homes in Eugene and Bend – UO promised the auditor that Moseley would not receive any more reimbursements  … :

The auditor made it a point to cc James Bean on the report. Moseley and Bean broke that deal within 2 months:


The full document dump is here – many interesting expense charges and more info on the contract extension. It was obtained in response to this public records request:
Dear Ms Thornton –

In the documents you sent me last week in response to my 4/4/2012 request there was a letter from acting Provost Davis stating in part

 The March 2011 interagency agreement between OSU and U0 clearly articulated the percent of FTE necessary for you to oversee the transfer of undergraduate academic programs at OUS-Cascades from UO to OSU. OSU agreed to reimburse UO for your time from July 1 to December 31, 2011 at 0.5FTE and January 1 to June 30, 2012 at 0.25FTE. It is my understanding the time necessary to oversee the program transfer was underestimated and resulted in an agreement between you and Jim Bean to increase your FTE to 0.5 FTE for the time period of January 1, 2012 to June 30, 2012.

This is a public records request for

a) a copy of that OSU/UO agreement

b) any letters, emails, notes, cocktail napkins, or other public records documenting the side agreement in which Jim Bean agreed to pay John Mosley an additional 0.25 FTE

c) any expense reports submitted by Moseley to UO or OSU or OUS from June 31 2009 to the present.

I ask for a fee waiver on the grounds of public interest. The golden parachute contracts between UO and Moseley involve the expenditure of a lot of UO and now apparently OSU money. They have been the subject of news stories in the Oregonian, Register Guard, and Bend Bulletin. In June 2009 OUS issued an audit report (attached) finding irregularities with Moseley’s previous contracts and travel expenses. The Oregon Politico database indicates that Moseley has been reimbursed for in-state travel since the agreement described in this audit report.

It turns out there is no written agreement between Moseley and Bean for the extra 0.25 FTE salary and benefits that Lorraine Davis is paying special assistant to the provost John Moseley – not even a cocktail napkin. (Davis did write out a contract to legitimize it, after Bean went on sabbatical.) These are acceptable business practices?

A few hours after getting these documents via a public records request, I got this email from Dave Hubin announcing that Interim President Berdahl was revoking the public interest fee-waiver arrangement which Richard Lariviere helped set up. Lisa Thornton of the Office of Public Records had been giving these waivers for the past 8 months, and I used one to obtain these documents.

Less transparency, less trust.

Back for another feeding

Check the date on Interim Provost Jim Bean’s org chart. His friends are back:

I guess it’s time to ask for more contracts, to see what their pay and perks are this time. These are the people advising Gottfredson? Or are we paying them to do, or not do, something else? Let’s find out. Despite what Randy Geller thinks, that’s what public records requests are for. 8/6/2012.

Bean is back from sabbatical

and another 7/6/2012 update:

From: “Provost Office”
Subject: Hello Again
Date: July 6, 2012 2:14:06 PM PDT

I have just returned to the Provost’s Office after an eight month leave.  I thank Lorraine Davis for doing a great job in the role of Acting Senior Vice President and Provost.  She left a stronger administration than she took over, in the face of some steep challenges.
I want to discuss two points today: internal communications and priorities for the Provost’s Office.
Internal Communications:  I feel that during the last legislative session, due to our intensely political environment, our internal communications faltered.  I commit to reversing that.  Aria Seligmann, a communications professional working for the Sustainable Cities Initiative, has now committed part of her time to the Provost’s Office to help maintain a continuous flow of information to the UO community.  I will provide regular updates on current events affecting the university, with data summaries of various successes and challenges facing the campus.  I am reorganizing the Provost’s Office to free up time for visiting with faculty, staff and student groups across campus.
Priorities:  Later this month, our leadership retreat will address the most pressing priorities for the Provost’s Office during this coming year.  The group in attendance will include the Leadership Council augmented by faculty, staff, student, Foundation and Alumni Association leadership.  I will present some ideas such as review of the Academic Plan and the Big Ideas, office and classroom space, etc.  The group will have an opportunity to add topics and to do an initial prioritization.  I have already spoken with Robert Kyr, President of the University Senate, about an online ranking process of these priorities, to be run by the Senate in September, involving the entire community.  From all this input, the President and I will settle on the priority topics for this year.
Until next time, enjoy the summer that seems to have finally arrived.
Regards, Jim

7/6/2012 update. Seems like Lorraine’s search to replace Don Harris worked out:

From: “Provost Office”
Subject: CIO and Vice Provost for Information Services Announcement
Date: July 6, 2012 9:34:37 AM PDT

I am pleased to announce that Dr. Melissa Woo has accepted our offer as CIO and Vice-Provost for Information Services for the University of Oregon.  Melissa currently serves in the role of director in University Information Technology Services at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM). She has a BA from University of California, Berkeley, a PhD in biophysics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and extensive IS leadership experience at Illinois and UWM.  She brings particular expertise in research computing. Melissa will be joining us September 3, 2012.
Please join me in welcoming Melissa and thanking Roger Thompson and the search committee for bringing us such outstanding candidates.
Regards, Jim

7/4/2012 update: provost.uoregon.edu has been revised. On the homepage Bean is no longer claiming to have been provost since 2008. But his official biography still does:

We’ve all got our pride I guess, but leaving the interim appointment business off of his vitae might be a bit problematic in some situations. No word on a date for his performance review – let me know if you hear anything.

7/1/2012: It’s no surprise that his website is wrong. Frohnmayer appointed him as *Interim* Provost in 2008, after Linda Brady left in a hurry. There was no search. Then, after he ran Lariviere’s transition team, Lariviere appointed him permanent VP and Provost in 2009. Again, there was no search. Nor has Bean ever had a performance review as interim Provost or Provost. Bean’s 2011 sabbatical plan talks about him “transitioning back to faculty”. Great – but when?

Bean’s vision of UO’s future is perhaps best captured by his 2009 academic plan, which has been ignored by everyone including his own office. Acting Provost Lorraine Davis has spent the past year cleaning up his various messes. It’s a long list, but her most recent effort has been Information Services. 2 years ago CIO Don Harris had a performance review that turned up lots of problems. Bean did nothing. So, while Bean was out on sabbatical Davis fired Harris, restructured his office, and started an open, transparent search which has brought 3 candidates to campus over the past month.

Maybe Gottfredson will keep Davis around, and have her run a similar search for a new Provost?

Jim will be back

1/28/2012: Berdahl should have announced he was giving Bean an interim appointment ending June 2013. This would satisfy the immediate need for a body to fill out the provost’s suit. It would also leave the deck clear for the next president to do an open search. But no:


The time line for transitions in the Provost office has been determined.  Jim Bean will return as Senior Vice President and Provost beginning July 1, 2012.  He will continue his sabbatical through May 31, 2012, and then serve in a transitional capacity during the month of June.  This will permit appropriate planning and coordination with me, the Executive Leadership Team, and Bob Berdahl as well as an overlap period with the current and soon-to-be-appointed Senior Vice Provost for Academic Affairs.

As the presidential search gets underway, it will be helpful to know who will serve as Provost on an ongoing basis.  I look forward to continuing in my current acting leadership role through the end of this academic and fiscal year.  I appreciate the continuing support and assistance I have experienced.


We’re all on a first name basis here, so who needs a job announcement, search, or a performance review? That sort of stuff is just for those faculty schlubs – the ones that Jim gets to evaluate and sign off on tenure and promotions, as provost. The month long overlap with Lorraine is so Jim can recover from his research efforts with old friends and get back up to speed on administrative matters.

FWIW, Pat, the OUS internal auditor, sent out this earlier this week, on her investigation of Jim’s sabbatical terms:

FYI.. update
We hope to complete the review this week.

Oregon University System
Internal Audit Division

     Patricia A. Snopkowski, Chief Auditor
     P.O. Box 488
     Corvallis, OR 97339
     Ph (541) 737-0505 Fax (541)737-9133
     Web- http://www.ous.edu/dept/intaudit
     Email- [email protected]

Nothing yet.

cronyism from new interim Provost

9/24/2011: Word down at the faculty club is that one of Interim Provost Lorraine Davis’s first acts was to offer her longtime friend Frances Dyke a job as her special assistant – so she’ll stay on even after we get a real CFO. This is exactly what worried everyone about Lorraine’s appointment.

Better the second time around?

9/19/2011: The groans over this are as loud as the crowd at Matt Court on a bad night. Not exactly hope and change. I don’t know what to think. Will she get to keep her car? What will this mean for her golden parachute contract? The 2008 Oregonian story by Suzanne Pardington on the golden parachute deals is here, the Moseley, Williams and Davis contracts are here, today’s Bill Graves story here. Nice headline. Not a lot of options for UO. Provost takes an unusual combination of skills combined with a willingness to work in academia. The people who are good at this and enjoy it have jobs. She did keep Frohnmayer and Moseley from destroying UO. I hope we get a replacement for Frances Dyke real quick. Comments?

Sept. 19, 2011

Dear Colleagues

This afternoon I am making the following public announcement regarding the appointment of Lorraine Davis as acting provost. I want to share the news at this time with the UO community and its partners.

During Lorraine’s interim appointment, Vice President for Research & Innovation Kimberly Espy will report directly to my office. All other administrative alignments will be unchanged.

I hope you will join me in welcoming Lorraine Davis to her newest role at the UO.

– Richard

Versatile administrator Lorraine Davis has been appointed by University of Oregon President Richard Lariviere to serve as acting provost at the UO for next year. She will fill in for Senior Vice President and Provost James Bean, who has been granted a one-year sabbatical during his recovery from a pulmonary embolism he suffered in June.

“Lorraine Davis is a tremendous administrator who has proved herself more than capable of stepping into many roles at the UO, and of doing so with vision and integrity,” Lariviere said. “As in every other position she has held, I know that Lorraine will serve with distinction as the top academic officer while Jim Bean is recovering.”

Davis, whose appointment is effective Oct. 1, is a retired administrator and faculty member who currently serves part-time as a special assistant to the president, provost and athletics director. She was appointed interim athletics director in March 2010, replacing Mike Bellotti, and served until Rob Mullens was hired and took over the permanent position four months later.

Davis, who previously held the position of vice president for academic affairs, said Monday that she is honored to serve the university and to assist during Bean’s recovery. She expects a learning curve as she gets fully up to speed on current academic issues, but intends to maintain what she described as the “upward trajectory” of the institution.

“This is not something I sought, but I do it out of a sense of duty and love and gratitude for the university,” she said. “With the strong leadership team that is in place, and that I will have the opportunity to work with, I hope to keep the institution moving forward and maintain the University of Oregon’s strong academic status.”

Davis joined the UO faculty in 1972 and served 20 years as a professor in the College of Human Development and Performance, teaching graduate research and statistics. She became graduate coordinator and department head in the UO school and community health program, then was appointed vice provost for academic personnel in 1990. Davis served as vice president for academic affairs from 2001 to 2006, with the deans of all UO schools and colleges reporting to her.

She earned her doctorate from the UO in health education, and holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mathematics and health and physical education from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.

Bean, who has served as UO provost for the past three years, announced a week and a half ago that he will return to teaching and research during a 60 percent sabbatical appointment over the coming year.

Baumgartner leaves UO, Lorraine Davis hangs on

Update: Rachel Bachman has more on the why. Predicts Jamie Moffitt will get promoted.

7/21/2011: From Adam Jude in the RG. Ms Baumgartner was Kilkenny’s hatchet woman when it came to cutting wrestling, she’s now giving up her $156,814 job at UO for Syracuse.

My guess is that AD Rob Mullens uses this as an opportunity to add another perk to Lorraine Davis’s golden parachute retirement contract. The Oregonian wrote about this scam long ago – the contracts were one of my first public records requests. I thought Ms Davis was long retired too, until I saw her at a Jock Box meeting a few months back and spit my coffee all over my shirt.

Turns out she’s now a Professor Emerita of Educational Methodology, Policy, and Leadership. Her other titles include Special Assistant to the Provost and Special Assistant to the AD. Very special – she gets $197,278 at 0.62 FTE, plus a cell phone and a car allowance, tickets, and an unknown expense account for travel to those fun away games. What does she do for that money. Sure you want to turn over that rock?

"Know the O"

6/2/2011: “Know the O” is the athletic department’s latest effort to pretend that they have some relationship to UO’s academic side. They are going to find a sponsor for 30 second spots on televised Ducks games, to highlight faculty research. Right in between the Bud Light commercials.

8 seconds for “this ad brought to you by …” and then 22 seconds for some faculty to talk about their research. I think that Dennis Howard from UO’s sports marketing Warshaw Center should go first:

My research shows that the athletic department siphons off tax deductible contributions that otherwise would have supported scientific research and helped build a new knowledge based Oregon economy. The athletic department also encourages donors that might have supported scholarships for low income Oregon residents to instead give to help pay Coach Kelly’s $3.5 million contract. Go Ducks!”

My vote was that we sell the airtime to the highest bidder, and then use the money for research and scholarships. But apparently that airtime belongs to AD Rob Mullens, not to the University of Oregon.

What else did I learn at the IAC? Lorraine Davis still has some athletic affiliation, and she is the go-to person if you are faculty looking for free tickets to a game. Not clear if you can take the tickets and sell them for cash to pay for time on the LCNI scanner – ask me when the football season starts.

Lorraine Davis pulls a fast one

1/20/2011: Steps down as interim AD, but kept the benefits, and a nice chunk of the $360,000 salary. I wonder what arrangement she and Rob Mullens have for this year? How long will this go on? Who is running UO? What does paying for her car and cell phone have to do with our mission? Meanwhile, here’s a story on what’s happening out there in the real world. Many UO staff are paid wages below the eligibility limit.

Not very well coordinated bullshit:

4/26/2010: Jamie Moffitt has been put in charge of the Athletic Department’s finances. Excellent move. But read the bullshit in the RG story, from our new Interim AD Lorraine Davis:

“The Department of Intercollegiate Athletics has experienced a period of rapid growth and success. This new position will help the department to develop and implement the necessary budgeting, financial, human resource, and contractual practices to support this expansion,” she said. “A key element of Jamie’s role will be assessing the department’s ongoing needs,” Davis said.  “Jamie and her team of financial and human resource professionals will ensure that the organizational structure, staffing, and financial resources are in place to achieve department priorities.”

“I felt there needed to be a high-level finance and administration person to coordinate all the functions of budgets, finances, human resources, strategic planning and contracts,” Davis said. “It’s not as coordinated as it needs to be.”

No kidding. Not very well coordinated, that’s the biggest problem with our athletic department? Compare this with what President Lariviere said:

“In the past this university has not followed acceptable business practices. That will not continue under my administration.” 

Here’s hoping he can quickly hire an AD that isn’t entirely beholden to the old guard, and that Lorraine can go back to proctoring exams for athletes and arranging the recruit / sorority girl mixers, while paid out of of the Tenure Reduction Program budget on the golden parachute contract she got from Frohnmayer. Not that we’re jealous.

Interim AD Lorraine Davis

3/30/2010: Since 2006, Oregon’s new Interim AD, Lorraine Davis, has been getting paid half time at a $197,278 FTE out of a fund that was originally intended to support retiring tenured faculty while they taught classes for 5 years prior to complete retirement.

When Provost John Moseley, and VP’s Davis and Dan Williams retired ~2006, Dave Frohnmayer set them all up with generous golden parachute contracts, paid from this fund. All of them are still on the books. Instead of requiring them to teach – as the program intended – Frohnmayer came up with administrative sinecures. Moseley is obviously the biggest offender. Despite an OUS audit about the situation, Lariviere has him on the books as “liaison UO to Central Oregon” (sic). We pay Moseley 1/2 time at a $248,941 FTE to liase from his fishing retreat on the Deschutes – you can rent one of his lodges here. We don’t know what Dan Williams is doing for his money.

From this anonymous email we were sent, it appears one of Lorrane Davis’s responsibilities while “overseeing the academic support services for student-athletes”, as President Lariviere’s email below puts it, actually involved proctoring student’s exams at away games:

Professor XXX,

I am writing to discuss a potential conflict for Student XYZ and the
final in your course.  As you may know, the volleyball team has
reached the NCAA tournament.  Depending on the outcome of their play this
weekend, they could be traveling as early as Tuesday next week to the
regional site for the next round.

The team will have to win two matches this weekend to continue in the
tournament.  I’d like to plan as if they will do so.

We have arranged for Lorraine Davis, Special Assistant to the
Vice Provost and former Vice President of Academic Affairs, to travel with
the team to proctor exams. 
I am happy to be a contact regarding the
facilitation of preparing those exams to be sent with Lorraine and your
preferences for how the exam is administered.  Or, if your preference is
not to have the exam taken on the road, I would be happy to assist in
making other arrangements.

By Sunday evening, we will know if the women will proceed or not,
and have more information regarding travel.

Thank you,

“Shawn” (name changed to protect the original author)

Academic Advisor & Tutorial Coordinator
Support Services for Student-Athletes
1237 University of Oregon
Eugene, OR 97403

I wonder if $197,278 FTE is the going rate for proctoring exams? Don’t GTF’s earn $12,000? I wonder if we paid her travel expenses too? This is what they mean when they say the athletic department is financially self-supporting? Somehow I don’t think Interim AD Lorraine Davis is going to be spending a lot of time getting to the bottom of that question! I guess the good news is that after she starts collecting the $30,000 a month AD salary, these payments will go back toward real academic purposes – at least temporarily. 

From: Susan Peter
Sender: [email protected]
To: [email protected]
ReplyTo: Susan Peter
Subject: deans-dirs: Heads Up Alert: Interim Athletics Director selected
Sent: Mar 26, 2010 11:20 AM

The following message is forwarded on behalf of president Richard
Lariviere –

Today, I am announcing that I’ve appointed Lorraine Davis to be the
interim Athletics Director. She will begin April 20 and serve on a
month-by-month basis until a permanent Athletics Director is selected in
a national search. Lorraine has a long, distinguished history with the
university. She started on the faculty in 1972 and retired in 2006 as
the vice president for academic affairs. She is an excellent
administrator who already works closely with the athletics department
team in her current role overseeing the academic support services for
student-athletes. She also chairs the vice provost for enrollment
management search, which is expected to be completed soon, and is deputy
administrator of the E.C. Brown Foundation and Trust, a philanthropic
health education organization. I am confident that she’ll be a strong
leader at this important time for the Athletics Department.

UO pays Lorraine Davis $197,278 to proctor exams?

Quoting from an email we received from an anonymous reader, regarding a student asking about doing their midterm while traveling to an away game:

The team will have to win two matches this weekend to
continue in the tournament. I’d like to plan as if they will do so.

We have tentatively arranged for Lorraine Davis, Special
Assistant to the Vice Provost and former Vice President of
Academic Affairs, to travel with the team to proctor exams. I
am happy to be a contact regarding the facilitation of preparing
those exams to be sent with Lorraine and your preferences for
how the exam is administered.

UO pays Lorraine Davis $197,278 FTE – and perhaps travel expenses to away games – to proctor undergraduate exams?