Daily Egyptian

SIU Board of Trustees to hold emergency meeting, discussion on ousting system president

SIU President Randy Dunn speaks about Illinois' budgetary issues and how they will affect the university while Carbondale Mayor Mike Henry looks on at a press conference held in the Stone Center. (Image by The Daily Egyptian)

SIU President Randy Dunn speaks about Illinois' budgetary issues and how they will affect the university while Carbondale Mayor Mike Henry looks on at a press conference held in the Stone Center. (Image by The Daily Egyptian)

By Brian Munoz, Staff Reporter

The SIU Board of Trustees will convene for a special meeting to consider whether or not to place SIU President Randy Dunn on administrative leave and appoint an acting president for the university system. 

The special meeting of the full board comes after Trustees Joel Sambursky and J. Phil Gilbert called for a special meeting of the executive committee on June 8, without prior knowledge to board chair Amy Sholar.

See more: Board executive committee to hold special meeting on SIU president

Sholar said in an interview with the Chicago Tribune that she was not involved in the decision to call the meeting and would not be attending due to work commitments.

The following day, Sholar announced that the executive committee does not have the authority to remove president Randy Dunn from the presidency and appoint an acting president.

“I am not convinced the executive committee has the authority to remove President Dunn or appoint anyone as a replacement,” Sholar said through an emailed statement on June 7. “Also, I do not believe that the matter is so urgent that an executive committee meeting is permissible for the purposes stated by these trustees.”

See more: Board chair announces executive committee can’t remove Dunn

At least one-half of the total membership of the Board shall be required for the initial selection of the president or the termination of the president’s services, according to board bylaws.

Sambursky rebuked Sholar’s statement and said that he and Gilbert, two out of the three members of the executive committee, were within their full legal authority to call the meeting and potentially take action on the agenda items per the SIU System General Counsel.

See more: Sambursky requests special executive committee meeting to be canceled

The special executive committee meeting was cancelled on June 8.

Board Vice Chair Phil Gilbert told the Southern Illinoisan that the university’s general counsel has sent 1,000 pages of un-redacted correspondence to the trustees over the course of the last ten days, beginning the night before the May 30 special board meeting.

Gilbert said after reviewing the documents, an urgent meeting was needed to place Dunn on administrative leave and appoint an acting president.

“If the information we had wasn’t serious, Trustee Sambursky and I wouldn’t have felt obligated to call an executive committee meeting,” Gilbert told the Southern Illinoisan.

The board will take a vote to make the contents of the material received by board members public during the Thursday meeting. 

The meeting agenda also calls for authorization to pursue a campus funding allocation study and authorization to engage a consultant, according to the meeting agenda.

Days prior, Katie Stuart, D-Edwardsville, launched a petition calling for a study into the allocation of state funding between the Carbondale and Edwardsville campuses after introducing a bill that calls for the Illinois Board of Higher Education to conduct a study on the funding split between SIUC and SIUE.

The SIU Board of Trustees special meeting will be held at 10:00 a.m. in Evergreen Hall Multi-Purpose Room 285 at the Edwardsville campus.

Staff reporter Brian Munoz can be reached at [email protected]ilyegyptian.com or on Twitter at @BrianMMunoz.

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1 Comment

One Response to “SIU Board of Trustees to hold emergency meeting, discussion on ousting system president”

  1. Gerry King on June 21st, 2018 3:25 pm

    Mr. Dunn needs to be fired now.However, the problems within the SIUC campus of the whole, run deeper that Mr. Dunn and his inability to lead.. A total house cleaning must take place within the faculty and service personnel ranks. At this point, I fear needed corrections are too late. SIUC is doomed to closure.

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