“Short Circuits”: Time to Clear Off Your Desk

The State Auditor launched an investigation into “your” Board of Trustees and the Foundation that “your group”‘s endowment. Accusations of racism are filed against the same Board, regarding its racial makeup. (Now including a recently-filed lawsuit.) A sex scandal is still hovering over “your group”‘s highest-profile entity. The FBI is now investigating “your group”. “You” pose in silly, badly-timed, kind-of offensive costumes with some of “your” staffers, WHILE THE ABOVE INVESTIGATIONS ARE GOING ON.

All of these incidents have happened within the last 6 months.

That “group” is the University of Louisville.
The “highest-profile entity”: the University of Louisville Men’s Basketball team.
The “you” mentioned: UofL President Dr. James Ramsey.
My question: why hasn’t he been asked to fill the 2 boxes in this blog’s title with items from his desk and office, and told that “his services are no longer required?”

Here’s a brief run down of all of the charges… that we, the public, know about:

  • The sex scandal involving UofL’s basketball team is still ongoing, with UofL police and the NCAA conducting separate investigations, as well as the Louisville Police department. Here is just one article on the situation, via the Indy Star; there are PLENTY of other articles out there : UofL Sex Scandal
  • This article, from WFPL.org, lays out some of the the details of the state audit. In a nutshell, State Auditor Adam Edelen looked into the University of Louisville Foundation and their handling of the $1.1 billion endowment for UofL
  • About a month ago, the Board of Trustees was under fire for not having a minority in its lineup. One Board member stepped down, freeing up a space for the appointment of William Summers, but that wasn’t apparently enough. This might not be as high of a profile problem as the first two issues but it’s another problem falling under the watch of President Ramsey
  • A week or so before the Board issue, while the sex scandal and the audit were still smoldering, President Ramsey and staffers dressed up for a Halloween party. Bad timing.
  • Finally, this story from WDRB.com details the FBI investigation of two of UofL’s top officials and the “suspicious timing” of their leaves. Dr. David Dunn, Executive Vice President for Health Affairs, and Dr. Priscilla Hancock, Chief Information Officer, were placed on leave, 17 months after an FBI investigation into their actions and only days after the investigation went public.

So, to recap: the NCAA, UofL police, Louisville Police, and the FBI have all investigated the University of Louisville, in some form (with two top officials being placed on leave); a lawsuit over racism is in the court system; the head of the University is photographed in a costumed that is considered “insensitive” (at best); and the State Auditor has investigated the school over mismanagement of money… all since June.

It is time for the heat on President Ramsey to crank up to an 11, despite some of the more idiotic comments from the Chairman of the Boars, Larry Benz. From the WDRB article on the FBI investigation:

“I think any time these things come out in the media, there is inherent negativity bias around events,” Benz said. “I can name you 30, 40 successes and positive things going on in the university but that doesn’t sell newspapers and get the reports it needs to. …Why aren’t you covering the positive things that happen as well?”

Benz also said the current investigation could “hardly …be called a scandal” as no one “has been accused of anything or indicted of anything.”

I didn’t realize that “FBI Investigates the University of Louisville” earned you a “Get Out Of Reporting On It Free Card” to use on the local media. There are 5 high-profile, damaging stories hanging over the University, cancelling out a lot of the really great stories coming out of UofL recently, such as this partnership, and there is seemingly no criticism directed towards the man captaining the ship during these incidents. If the Board of Trustees is reluctant to ask for President Ramsey’s resignation, then Chairman Benz needs to meet with the Board, come up with a condemnation/reprimand, and present it to both President Ramsey and the public. Right now, it appears to many that President Ramsey is getting a free pass from the Board of Trustees on events that would end the tenure of most others, if in the same position, and that needs to change in a hurry.

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