Email from the interim chief of OSU’s new Police

Thanks to a reader for forwarding. Lots of stuff about community and transparency, but no mention of what sort of weaponry they will be armed with:

Dear OSU community members,

The Department of Public Safety wants you to know that we feel the pain, the outrage and the impact of the tragic and avoidable death of George Floyd. As a country, we have witnessed too many examples of this racist behavior, and it continues today despite demands from the public for police reform.

I am writing today to share my commitment and approach to community partnerships within the OSU community.

At this time, each of us bears the societal responsibility to do everything in our power to change the abhorrent reality confronting communities plagued with systemic inequality and discrimination against the Black community and other communities of color. We must rise and speak out. If not we are bystanders to prejudice, and we must commit to educating all on the importance of inclusivity and equality. We also need to actively protect those among us who are most vulnerable.

While I am new to Oregon State University, I know that we are a university founded on comprehensive excellence for all people. I also believe we must hold one another accountable for our actions and encourage courageous conversations about the most challenging topics that arise. And I believe that our public service foundation must be built upon trust, openness and civility to truly protect and serve our unique university community.

The foundation of public safety and law enforcement in a campus setting starts with building trust through sharing of information, being fully transparent, fostering positive and personal relationships, and maintaining daily lines of communication. I assure that at OSU, public safety will be in line with the university’s values and principles.

As OSU’s public safety leader, I shall set a clear expectation for the entire department on how we move forward with community engagement. My pledge to the university community is that we will create an approach to public safety that is friendly, caring, safe and understanding. In doing so, we will help all community members know they are welcome, safe and belong here.

We will hold all Public Safety Department employees accountable by developing measurable goals that are consistent with university values and build a system to ensure greater effectiveness and accountability to the OSU community through training, discipline, and commitment to achieve results.

One of my first initiatives will be to create a Community Oriented Results and Expectation Committee (CORE). The purpose of this committee is to collaborate with OSU community members to address their issues and concerns through cooperative effort and review of community needs, and by discussing expectations and responses relative to public safety services, quality-of-life issues and community-oriented policing. In the days and weeks ahead, I will continue to share my developing concepts and plans for public safety and Corvallis campus police services, and seek and listen to input from students, faculty and staff. Before then, I want the OSU community to know that I hear your concerns regarding Black Lives Matter, racial inequality and policing nationally. Please know that I will engage you in creating public safety and community policing services that represents what is best for the university, students, faculty and staff.

As a member of the OSU community myself – and in my role leading public safety – I look forward to building a personal and trusting working relationship with our student cultural resource centers, leaders within student government and all students, faculty and staff.

In closing, I want you to know that I chose to become a police officer 30 years ago after witnessing first-hand, the mistreatment of my father by police. I made a commitment to make a positive difference and be a public servant for my community.

I believed then – just as I believe now – that through transparency, accountability and collaboration with the very communities that we collectively serve, we can provide appropriate, trusted and valued community and public safety services. I remain committed to safety, diversity and inclusivity for all, and I am fully committed to help rebuild the law enforcement community across America into a noble and trusted profession.

Working together with university community members and collaborators, I am confident that we will set an exemplary standard and lead the way. Please join me in this effort and I invite you to reach out to me personally at [email protected]


Edgar Rodriguez
Interim Associate Vice President of Public Safety and Chief of Police

OSU Department of Public Safety
Division of Finance and Administration
Oregon State University
200 Cascade Hall
Corvallis, OR 97333
Ph: 541-737-3010

Pres calls for athletic department to pay 25% of TV revenues to academic side

That would be OSU’s new President F. King Alexander, reflecting on his successes and failures at LSU, on a piece from the Sambla Sweden blog today:

… Another area where Alexander wishes he could have been more effective was convincing the leadership of other SEC institutions to join him in a pact that would have required 25% of revenues generated by the SEC Network, which premiered in 2014, to go to academics.

Alexander says he and the president of the University of Georgia were pushing the idea during negotiations with the upstart network six years ago. But smaller schools were unwilling to go along, not wanting to be told how they should allocate the revenues they receive.

As a result, the $42 million a year per university the network generates goes to athletics.

“If that vote had gone our way we would have gotten nearly $11 million or so every year for academics,” he says. “That would have been a significant amount of money.” …

As it happens UO Pres Mike Schill will be leading the Pac-12 this year, perhaps Alexander can push him to accept a similar proposal.

Update: OSU hired F. King Alexander, despite censure by LSU Senate and the AAUP after he fired a professor for cussing in class


I wonder how much of this the Witt/Kieffer search consultants, Zachary A. Smith, Ph.D., Suzanne Teer and Kim Brettschneider passed on to the OSU Board and hiring committees. In 2018 the UNC system banned its schools from hiring Witt Kieffer for searches, after they failed to do due diligence on a chancellor hire.

Page down if you’re interested in how OSU’s new president F. King Alexander spent $85M in student money on the infamous LSU Lazy River.

If you are interested in having an informed opinion on his role in firing LSU professor Teresa Buchanan, I doubt you’ll do better than this thorough, well researched, and nuanced 2017 report in Elle – a magazine which apparently sucks in readers with promises of fashion and horoscopes, and then gives them some serious reporting about higher education. Warning – it’s a long story:

Or just cut to the conclusion – $600K a year LSU President Alexander fired a $78K professor without even bothering to do his homework:

[President] Alexander now probably wishes he’d paid closer attention to the Buchanan case. When he was deposed by Corn-Revere this January, he admitted that he hadn’t read the hearing transcript, had no idea who’d testified, and chose to overrule the faculty panel largely based on the complaints of the local superintendent, Ed Cancienne. Alexander said in the deposition that he was particularly moved by Cancienne’s assertion that Buchanan had said “pussy” three times in one of his schools, though he and the other LSU investigators admitted that they were under the impression that she’d used the word in the anatomical sense. In fact, according to testimony, Buchanan had asked teachers how they’d respond if a parent of one of their students got hostile and called them a “pussy.”

Here are some other sources on LSU President Alexander and the Buchanan firing:

The professor’s firing offense? From the Baton Rouge Advocate, here:

Buchanan’s controversial comments included saying “f*** no” repeatedly in the presence of students, using a slang term for vagina that implies cowardice, and joking that the quality of sex declines the longer a relationship lasts.

Buchanan, who worked for LSU for nearly two decades, claimed the salty language was part of her teaching approach and was not directed at — nor did it disparage — any student.

The LSU student newspaper has the story here on the subsequent censures of LSU Pres F. King Alexander by the Faculty Senate, and of LSU by the AAUP:

In January 2018, the U.S. District Court for the middle district of Louisiana dismissed former University education professor Teresa Buchanan’s case that LSU President F. King Alexander and three University administrators violated her first and fourteenth amendment rights.

Alexander fired Buchanan in 2015, despite a panel of faculty members choosing not to recommend her dismissal when they found her guilty of violating the University’s sexual harassment policies.

Buchanan officially filed a notice to appeal the court’s decision on Feb. 1.

However, the Faculty Senate is not satisfied with the University’s decision and suggests that Buchanan’s right to due process was violated.

Despite the court’s initial motion for summary judgement, the LSU Faculty Senate and the American Association of University Professors have not reconsidered their respective censures of Alexander and the University. … [Full story includes links to court decisions etc.]

The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, which joined in the unsuccessful lawsuit against Alexander and LSU on behalf of the professor he fired, has more here:

What happened to Teresa Buchanan was wrong. The LSU administrators involved, including the university’s president, F. King Alexander, should be ashamed of themselves. And the courts should not have let LSU get away with Buchanan’s firing. If anything, the Supreme Court’s choice to pass on this case will only increase the likelihood that it will see more such cases in the future.

12/13/19: OSU Board hires F. King Alexander from LSU, of Lazy River fame

The OSU PR flack version, here:

“Dr. King Alexander is the right person, educator and higher education leader to carry on the transformative impact that Oregon State University provides throughout our state, nation and world,” said Rani Borkar, chair of OSU’s Board of Trustees. “His leadership will carry forward the university’s significant momentum generated by President Ed Ray.

A more skeptical view, from the former LSU Board chairperson who tried to get Alexander fired, here:

Longtime supporter says it’s time to fire LSU president, athletic director

Governor says he’s not ready to support such an action.

Gov. John Bel Edwards said he’s not ready to back up a call to oust LSU President F. King Alexander by the former chair of the state’s top policymakers for public higher education.

Richard Lipsey, a longtime supporter of LSU and one of the richest businessmen in Baton Rouge, pointed to a series of what he called scandals that has hit the headlines over the past few weeks from the suspension of basketball coach Will Wade to the university’s involvement in hospital foundation fraud allegations to criticism from the Legislative Auditor for improperly paying a vet school professor who had been disciplined.

… “It’s very unfortunate what’s going on there. It’s time we move on,” Lipsey said in an interview about a series of issues that have arisen over the past few months at LSU that he blames on Alexander’s leadership. “We don’t really have all the facts, they’re not very transparent. But there have been so many missteps over at LSU. We need to begin the search for a qualified leader.”

… Lipsey faulted Alexander for spending $85 million on a “lazy river” swimming pool while the basement of the main library gets ankle deep in water whenever it rains.

Lipsey faults Alexander on being unable to get handle on the fraternities at LSU, where one freshman died from overdrinking in 2017 and nine DKE members were arrested earlier this year for violent hazing incidents.

… On Monday, the legislative auditor issued a report finding that the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine “improperly compensated” a faculty member more than $400,000 in salary and benefits for more than three years even though the professor did no work.

… An independent auditor claimed last week that fundraiser John Paul Funes had diverted at least some the $810,000 they say he took to help the parent of an LSU athlete by paying her wages for a job.

More on LSU’s Lazy River and leaking library here.

Alexander’s new contract is here, thanks to an OSU reader for the link. They’ll pay him $630K, plus perks. His “return to faculty” rights are pretty sweet, though nothing compared to what UO’s generous Trustees just promised Pres Schill – from other people’s money.


Schill’s deal is for ~3x the average UO law professor’s pay, and 1/2 the work:


OSU administration gives faculty union a 1.8% ultimatum offer

The west coast urban CPI increased 3.1% last year. Mike Gottfredson & his well paid anti-union consultants tried a similar tactic during their effort to fight UO’s faculty union. The accent grave on vis-à-vis is a nice touch though – I wonder how much Ed Ray’s consultant charged for it. I also like the weaselly promise that 

employees in senior academic and administrative leadership roles—including the president, provost, vice presidents and equivalent, vice provosts, associate vice presidents, and deans—will not be eligible to participate in the FY20 salary increase program.

Of course not. They’ve already got theirs.

28 October 2019

Dear OSU Colleagues,

Oregon State University is deeply appreciative of the outstanding contributions, dedication, and hard work of its employees, and the university is committed to attracting and retaining high quality and productive faculty and staff. We strive to support our employees fairly while also balancing competing financial pressures, including challenges in state and federal support for higher education, the imperative to keep the cost of attendance manageable for students, and the need to invest in priorities that advance the university’s mission and financial viability.

As you know, OSU continues to face a challenging budget environment. Mandated state public employee retirement and health insurance costs are rising. Enrollment growth—tuition from which now accounts for 70 percent of OSU’s education and general fund dollars—has slowed. State funding is not keeping pace with continuing service level costs. Meanwhile, units throughout the university managed significant expense reductions in FY18 and FY19, and will do so again in FY20.

At the same time, offering competitive compensation is critical to OSU’s goals to recruit and retain the very best faculty and staff. We do not wish to put the salaries that the university offers at a competitive disadvantage vis-à-vis our peers, a problem that has a compounding effect that is hard to rectify later.

Therefore, the university has decided again this year to implement a university-wide salary increase program. The scale and scope of the program is what we believe OSU can afford given the many competing needs for resources. Here is an overview of this program:

§  Academic, research and professional faculty members not represented by UAOSU—who have performed at a satisfactory level or better and have received an evaluation within university guidelines—are eligible for salary increase consideration if they were hired into their current position prior to January 1, 2019 and work half-time or more. Eligible faculty with fully satisfactory performance will receive a merit increase of 1.8 percent in their base annual salary rate effective January 1, 2020 for 12-month faculty, and February 1, 2020 for 9-month faculty. An additional increase may be allocated to eligible employees based on performance, compression, and/or equity considerations. The maximum increase an employee may receive in this program is 6 percent (increase for fully satisfactory performance plus any additional discretionary increase). The maximum allocation for the salary program in each academic and administrative budget unit is 3 percent of the unit’s salary base for eligible employees.

§  As OSU is actively engaged in negotiations with UAOSU, we have elected to offer UAOSU the option of accepting—on their members’ behalf—the FY20 salary increase program outlined above. This option is contingent on UAOSU accepting the program for the current year and bargaining for any increases for FY21 and beyond. That is, the offer is contingent on UAOSU’s agreement that this serves as the negotiated salary increase for bargaining unit members for FY20 and that UAOSU will not negotiate any further on the subject of salary increases for that or prior fiscal years. This would ensure that UAOSU-represented faculty are not delayed in receiving a salary increase for FY20 while bargaining continues.

§  Employees represented by the Coalition of Graduate Employees (CGE) bargaining group or classified employees represented by SEIU, will receive increases as set forth in the existing CGE agreement and, if ratified, the new terms of the recent SEIU agreement.

Because of the difficult budget situation, employees in senior academic and administrative leadership roles—including the president, provost, vice presidents and equivalent, vice provosts, associate vice presidents, and deans—will not be eligible to participate in the FY20 salary increase program.

Detailed information regarding the FY20 salary increase program and process timeline will be provided separately to unit leaders, who are responsible for deciding any changes in compensation for their employees.

Please direct any questions to Susan Capalbo, senior vice provost for faculty affairs, or Cathy Hasenpflug, chief human resources officer.

Sincerely yours,

Edward Feser, Provost and Executive Vice President

Mike Green, Vice President for Finance and Administration

OSU loses a president, gains an economics professor

Members of the Oregon State University community,

I am writing to let you know that it is my intention to step down as president of Oregon State University on June 30, 2020, when my current five-year contract will be completed, and after almost 17 years since I had the great honor and joy to assume the presidency on July 31, 2003. I will continue to serve as president of Oregon State University until the new president assumes office.

The timing for this transition is excellent. We have just adopted a new chapter in our strategic plan, SP4.0, and we are guided by our common statement of aspirations: Vision 2030. Furthermore, we have recently completed a comprehensive self-study as part of a seven-year accreditation process and we will welcome an external accreditation review team to OSU in the next few weeks. We also developed a 10-year business forecast and a 10-year capital planning model to help guide university fiscal decisions. Perhaps most importantly, I have never worked with a stronger leadership team in my 16 years of service as your president, including an excellent university board of trustees.

Personally, my health is very good. Yet, I will be almost 76 years old when I step down as president, and I view my job as including my best effort to assist this wonderful university in transitioning to new leadership. Effective July 1, 2020, I will begin a sabbatical and transition to the College of Liberal Arts as a professor of economics.

Please know that my affection for each of you, my passion and commitment to the mission, vision and values of this university have never been stronger. And, I remain certain that the best is yet to come for Oregon State University and those we serve. Our graduates are our greatest contribution to the future, and my colleagues will help all of us provide for a more inclusive future to meet the educational, economic and social needs and aspirations of all Oregonians and those beyond our state, through our teaching, research, creative work and service.

Within the next few weeks, Rani Borkar, chair of OSU’s Board of Trustees, will provide further details regarding the process and timeline for bringing the 15th president to this wonderful university, including the role that each of you can play in contributing to a successful search for OSU’s next president.


Edward J. Ray, President

Government Relations Office sends out update on 2018 legislative session

That would be OSU’s Government Relations Office. Sure it’s only October, and the session is 3 months away, but the early bird gets the worm:

From: “Mills, Jock”

Subject: [Government_Relations_Update] OSU Government Relations Update — Looking to the 2018 Legislative Session and Beyond

Date: October 30, 2017 at 4:41:46 PM PDT Continue reading

John Canzano on how big-time college sports corrupts everything

In the Oregonian, here, with a link to his previous investigative reports on the alleged 1998 gang rape by members of the OSU football team:

… The Benton County District Attorney’s office and the blossoming enterprise that was the Beavers’ athletic department had a close working relationship, according to Sandrock. The Beavers held an annual meeting designed to foster good will.

Over the years, Sandrock said, he and other investigators were summoned to a meeting with Oregon State administrators during the tenures of football coaches Mike Riley, Joe Avezzano, Jerry Pettibone and Dave Kragthorpe. Present for those meetings were upper-level administrators including athletic directors Dee Andros and, later, Mitch Barnhardt. The meetings were presided over by one of the OSU vice presidents and occasionally by the university president, according to Sandrock.

On Oregon State’s annual guest list: the district attorney’s office, Corvallis Police Department, Benton County Sheriff’s Department, Oregon State Police and campus police.

“We’d get together and slap backs, laugh and talk about how we were going to try to work better together,” Sandrock said. “We had one season where 10 or 11 of the starting 22 football players ended up under investigation for one crime or another. Finally, one year I stood up at the meeting and said, ‘If I catch your assistant coaches contacting a sex-assault victim involving one of your players again I’ll have the coach arrested.'”

The room went silent.

Prior to 1998, Sandrock said, he became aware that Oregon State assistant football coaches attempted to talk survivors out of pursuing cases. The practice happened more than once, according to Sandrock, and not just with sex assaults.

“It just seemed to be part of the culture that coaches would do what they could to get their athletes out of trouble,” he said. …

Meanwhile Austin Meek has a story in the RG (prompted by the departure of Jim Bartko for the AD’s job at Fresno State) about the 1996 decision by UO boosters to go big on college football:

… The enduring contribution, though, was his relationship with Oregon’s biggest benefactor. It started in the 1990s, when Bartko was working in Oregon’s Portland development office and Knight was taking a renewed interest in his alma mater.

“After the Rose Bowl, he started getting involved,” Bartko said. “I just happened to be his contact. We became great friends.

“He had a vision for the University of Oregon to be great. He thought athletics could be a great window to the whole campus and elevate everybody.”

When Bartko leaves, he’ll take his own piece of Oregon history. He was one of the people at the table when three influential boosters — Knight, Pat Kilkenny and Randy Papé — gathered with Bellotti after the 1994 Cotton Bowl to chart the future of Oregon athletics.

Apparently the faculty were not consulted, though presumably some of the Johnson Hall administrators, who were along for their free junkets, were in on the deal.

President, Senate cooperate to transparently work with new board

From our Corvallis branch office:

Outgoing Senate President Kevin Gable spoke eloquently about the role of Faculty Senate in a shared governance setting. That would be at Oregon State University:

Nice little profile in the Gazette-Times, as well:

Then Gable ticks off the pieces of the OSU puzzle in which the Senate wields significant influence: curriculum, academic regulations, the criteria for promotions and tenure. Gable also noted the Senate’s role in the establishment of OSU’s new Board of Trustees.

“I’m extremely happy with the process we went through. It was a showcase of shared governance. The Senate specifically and the faculty broadly participated in the decision-making process. And that’s where our interest lies.”

Here at UO, the Senate has not yet heard much about the UO board of trustees. We were not told we could attend their first meeting. A second meeting, apparently to approve their by-laws is coming soon. There are no draft by-laws on the UO Trustees website, and there is no notice of meeting either.

University hires new VP for Finance and Administration for $236K

5/4/2013: The university has successfully concluded an open national search for a new VP for Finance and Administration. The president reports to the faculty:

“Our former VPFA did an exemplary job of helping keeping the university on a sound financial footing in a difficult economic environment and doing so in a most transparent manner. Our new VPFA has the experience and vision to continue that success as the university moves forward.”

 The salary is a substantial $236K:

But the new hire has many years of experience as VPFA at smaller universities, and $236K seems to be the competitive wage for a university with 25,000 students and a research budget of $160M a year. Plus, the university is not taking much risk with a one year contract, and must pay accordingly.

Oh wait. Sorry. The above is the deal for OSU’s new VPFA, Glenn Ford. Here at UO, our VPFA is Jamie Moffitt, and we pay her $270K. 

She was hired in 2012 after a failed search for an outside candidate. She was on the search committee that rejected the other applicants – no conflict of interest there! Her previous financial experience seems to consist of a few years managing the budget for the UO law school, and then 18 months or so doing the same for the UO athletic department. During which time she proved her loyalty by hiding the details of the strange and expensive deals between Dave Frohnmayer and Duck booster Pat Kilkenny, whom he had appointed athletic director. Pretty risky to appoint an outsider who might not understand the benefits of “The Oregon Way”. And she’s proving her loyalty again, by hiding UO’s budget projections from the UO faculty:

Beavs sweep Ducks on public records access

5/28/2012: Back in November the RG editors criticized President Lariviere for the raises that brought down the Governor’s wrath, noting that fully 40% of the money was going to administrators:

“Bad Politics, Good Policy: The UO invests its tuition money in (some) people”

… The documents list “special equity raises” of $3.1 million for 743 faculty members and $1.8 million for 417 administrators. The faculty raises averaged 6.98 percent; administrators’ increases averaged 7.68 percent. …

How did the administration go about justifying raises for each other and benefits like cars and family Rose Bowl trips? The documents and thin rationalizations are here.

It took Nathan Tublitz more than three months to get this info via the public records process. Initially UO told him he’d have to pay $4,328.63 to see the records for all administrators. Tublitz narrowed his request to a few top administrators. Even after that it took more than a month, many emails, and a meeting of the Senate Transparency Committee to get UO to release this information.

Some faculty at Oregon State tried to get the same info for some of their top administrators, who also got some hefty raises. They sent the OSU public records officer an email, got a $35 estimate (should have asked for a fee waiver, this should be a slam dunk with their DA) and a week later they had the documents. Full dump here, warning 9MB file.

It’s the coverup that destroys trust. In a few short months Bob Berdahl has managed to do some major damage to the improvements in public records transparency initiated by Lariviere. It’s shameful. But I hadn’t realized we were this far behind.

President gives pay raises, keeps job.

12/14/2011. That would be OSU President Ed Ray. From the Corvallis Gazette Times:

OSU will, however, raise its faculty pay by 4 percent starting in January 2012, as a means of keeping good faculty and attracting top-notch new faculty members. The faculty also will receive pay raises in January 2013.

Thursday’s announcement about the faculty raises comes a month after news broke that University of Oregon faculty and administrative workers received on average $4,845 in raises last spring.

Along with raises, the university plans hire 40 to 57 more faculty members over the next year, including 15 to 17 to teach sections of courses with heavy undergraduate enrollment. And just like students, OSU hopes to hire the best faculty they can.

Congratulations to the OSU faculty. I’m no economist, but these raises look very similar to the ones that Chancellor Pernsteiner and Governor Kitzhaber used as part of their justification for firing Richard Lariviere. I wonder if board member and OSU professor Lynda Ciuffetti gets one? Maybe President Ray is getting away with this because he’s not passing out sabbaticals and BMW’s to his top administrators?