Goldman’s decision in controversial faculty case reversed

By Gus Bode

Chancellor Sam Goldman’s decision to go against a Faculty Senate Judicial Review Board recommendation on a March faculty dispute has been overturned by the Office of the President, sources close to the matter say.

Jill Adams, who was involved in the faculty dispute that had her on the brink of termination, said it was her understanding that SIU President Glenn Poshard took the advice of a committee and took her off disciplinary probation.

According to a letter sent to Goldman dated March 18, Peter Alexander, dean of the School of Law, placed Adams on disciplinary probation and sought to revoke her tenure for two academic years for ‘not meet(ing) the expectations of the School of Law.’


Adams appealed the decision to the Faculty Senate’s Judicial Review Board, a 12-person committee that reviews faculty complaints against other faculty and administrators. The board unanimously sided with Adams.

Goldman ignored the board’s decision, which prompted Adams to seek the support of the American Association of University Professors.

Poshard formed the committee after the case escalated to the point where the university was in danger of AAUP censure.

The reversal effectively takes Adams off probation and keeps her tenure intact.

‘Basically it takes me off probation and does set forth a course of action to get my writing back on track,’ she said. ‘My understanding is that Poshard accepted the recommendations.’

Vice President for Academic Affairs Paul Sarvela said the Office of the President does not comment on personnel matters, therefore he could not confirm the decision.

John Jackson, who headed the committee, said the group turned in its report to the Office of the President at the end of May, but declined to say what specific recommendations were made.


The committee now turns its attention to a second task, which involves reshaping university policies so a similar dispute is avoided in the future.

‘The more important long-term issue is the various policy recommendations,’ he said. ‘We are mostly interested in the question of how we can encourage faculty development if a faculty member needs help with research or improvement.

‘Basically we are looking at supplying resources and opportunity so that faculty don’t have to declare they are a lousy teacher.’