8/20 Hansen and Jarman comments, other public comments

Glenn Hansen – Good evening. I’m Glenn Hansen, President of the Faculty Association and Faculty Senate.

Fall semester has begun. I think it’s important to note that at yesterday’s Convocation activities there was a markedly better spirit on campus. I’ve been to a few of these days and yesterday was different. Healing is starting.

It’s interesting that the plan to fire Dr. Breuder comes one year after we asked the faculty to think about what they believe College of DuPage stands for. The faculty proceeded to vote in September overwhelmingly for the removal of Dr. Breuder. The faculty will greet your action as good news when you, the BoT, votes tonight, most likely 4-2, for his dismissal. But, the joy will be tempered by the damage left in his wake. At this time we are focused on repairing the damage and he has become a small reflection in the rear view mirror. While the faculty are looking to a brighter future, we are constantly reminded of the past by the undying support he receives from a small faction of Trustees every two weeks. Regardless, this anticipated action by the Board will clearly indicate that the abuses of the past are unacceptable and will not be tolerated. This vote should initiate some serious soul searching amongst people who have empowered and participated in the chronicled activities.

We have serious work to do and this needs to be over. So tonight, I plead with you, the Trustees, to stop and think about the College of DuPage, not Bob Breuder. The termination of this presidency is inevitable. If you didn’t see this coming, I’m very surprised. If you look at the documents made pubic, including our 13-page Vote of No Confidence document, there is a preponderance of evidence that Robert Breuder has damaged the College in many ways. He cannot make a legitimate claim to any of the positive accomplishments you granted him in January, they are the work of others. He did overcharge, overtax, overbudget, and underspend. Anyone in this room could do that, but few would.

Tonight, you will vote for or against the College. The agenda item is about the president, but it is not really. Seize the moment, you can make this the day we move forward and stop focusing on the past. The primary responsibility of the college president is to protect and promote the reputation of the College. If you have thought of firing him, you need no more cause than this failure, I suggest you vote 6-0 and seal the deal by negating any question of a 5-vote minimum.

Thank you.

Richard Jarman – Cycles of life at the college tend to be in periods of one year. This Monday I will be welcoming a new generation of students into my classes. Come May I will be saying farewell as they make their way in the world, and will await the next generation come August once more.

Out of a sense of nostalgia I reviewed the minutes from the board meeting one year ago. How were things then? I noted that I reported on my visiting Northwestern University’s Materials Research Science and Engineering Center to listen to the final presentations of two COD students who had spent the summer doing internships in that most prestigious facility, funded in part by the Resource for Excellence Grant that I had obtained from our Foundation. Well I did exactly the same thing today, spending a happy couple of hours listening to two of our fine students giving a wonderful account of their work and representing the college so well. Echoing what Doctor Collins said in his address yesterday, it is just one of the things that we do here; one of the things that sets this college apart in all the right ways. So, again, thanks to the Foundation for their support of this activity.

In that way, life today is much the same as one year ago. In the larger picture it is much different. For in our little Narnia, spring has sprung. The White Witch is dispatched. New signs of life are everywhere. Those figures turned to stone are alive once more. We could sense it yesterday in the assembly: a renewed enthusiasm for the coming year and a sense that the faculty and teaching really matter once more.

We look forward to the return of the community farm and the impact that will have on many avenues of college life, academic and otherwise. We look forward to the Waterleaf space being populated by students and faculty. You have heard from the community concerning Buffalo Theatre. You got a petition, signed by over 1000, including me. BTE represents another ensemble driven by faculty that benefits students and the community directly and indirectly. Look at the support. While BTE is perhaps the most vocally supported, let us not overlook other faculty-driven ensembles in voice and music that were shriveled during the long winter. With spring come, it is time to support all these endeavors once more.

Kirk Allen – Termination for cause – we have been begging for this. Press focused on super-majority clause, but this won’t hold water. Reads law – statute refers to quorum and majority vote. Breuder was out of control, your internal investigations have probably revealed even more than what has been disclosed so far. This vote is not about money, but about education. What message is being sent to students by a college president who abuses taxpayer funds for his own pleasure? If you cannot vote for this, then abstain, to avoid further embarrassment to yourself and this fine institution.

Keith Yearman – 15-year veteran of the faculty. Met many new faculty today and welcomes them. Feels sorry for our FOIA officer, has fielded many more requests this year than last year. Many are repetitive. Can responsive documents be uploaded to the web?