Sunday, May 09, 2010

Trustee Skips Commencement to Attend Tea-Party Rally

I wish this were more shocking. Via the aptly-named Crooks and Liars:
Hennessy's most recent post links to the American Majority 'grassroots summit' in Kansas City this weekend. One of the featured speakers is Eric O'Keefe, Chairman of the Sam Adams Alliance, also on the board of Wisconsin Club for Growth and a former director of Americans for Limited Government. ALG has been associated with Howard Rich and Grover Norquist.
O'Keefe is, of course, one of the many new additions to Shimer's Board of Trustees, brought on by the extremely former president Tom Lindsay.

A look at the schedule further shows that O'Keefe was speaking on Friday evening. So, if Shimer academics had any meaning to him -- or any of the other members of Lindsay's wrecking crew, not a single one of whom showed their faces at commencement -- he could easily have made the trip. That he did not, and they did not, shows that their disregard for the community extends to a general lack of regard for Shimer as anything but a useful, accredited shell.

In contrast, friendly trustees arrived from as far away as California to attend commencement, the single most important and uniting event in the Shimer year. And this year's commencement was a glorious occasion. Students, parents, and alumni from far and near came out to congratulate the newest members of the alum community.

We can only hope that Mr O'Keefe and his friends will continue to follow the precedent they have set, and stay away from Shimer permanently in the future. Unfortunately, despite the failure of their takeover attempt, and their evident shared contempt for everything that Shimer represents, not a single one has left the Board. This forces us, reluctantly, to conclude that there is still work to be done to preserve Shimer from the hostile takeover led by Patrick Parker.

Once O'Keefe and his ilk are gone at last, it is imperative that the Board enact substantial changes that will prevent anything of this nature from ever happening again.


Issac Gnuton said...

A recent broadcast on Frontline, dealing with for-profit higher education, noted that the cost of initial accreditation is in the vicinity of $10 Million.

...just in case anyone is skeptical about why Shimer might be an attractive takeover target.


dansbooks said...

One correction: Three of Mr. Lindsay's trustees have resigned from the Board: Claudia Allums, Matt Frank, and Carson Holloway. With the additional departure of Mr. Parker, trustees advocated and promoted by Mr. Lindsay are now a clear minority on the Board. Stay tuned as the drama continues to unfold.