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Dario Navarro

S.K. Grand Sathorn Apartments, Apt. 310, 203 Soi Sribumphen
Toongmahamek, Sathorn, Bangkok, Thailand 10120
Mobile: +66-(0)9-1998-0502

Via Email:

E-Mail: navdar@gmail.com

Dr. Elizabeth (Beth) J. Stroble, stroble@webster.edu; Dr. Julian Z. Schuster, julianschuster@
webster.edu; Dr. Grant Chapman, chapman@webster.edu

26 October 2014
Dr. Elizabeth (Beth) J. Stroble
President
Webster University
470 East Lockwood Avenue
St. Louis, MO 63119
USA
Re:

Dr. Julian Z. Schuster

Provost, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer

Dr. Grant Chapman

Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs and Director
of International Programs

Webster University
St. Louis, MO 63119 USA

Recommendations for Resolving Current Administrative Crisis on the Webster
University (Thailand) (WUT) Campuses

Dear Drs. Stroble, Schuster and Chapman:
As you must by now certainly know, Webster University (Thailand) (WUT) is in a state of
severe administrative crisis. Since beginning the research on my reply to the frivolous and
retaliatory warning letter I received a little over a week ago, I have been independently and
spontaneously approached by a wide variety of sympathetic indivdiuals at WUT who have
provided me with an enormous amount of additional unsolicited information that warrants
immediate investigation and immediate action on your part. I have also become aware that I
am far from alone in calling attention to the shockingly conspicuous incompetence, selfdealing, gross negligence and overt misconduct of WUT administrations, including especially:
(1) Ratish Thakur, Rector, (2) Nisha Ray Chaudhuri, Academic Head, and (3) Roy R. Avecilla,
to name just three of many unqualified, underperforming, irresponsible managers.
In my “Reply to the ‘Official Warning’ Letter” that I submitted to you by email only last night
and in other complaints that I know have been previously submitted, a train of misconduct has
been described to you that includes, but is not limited to, multiple episodes of gross managerial
negligence, overt self-dealing and apparent breach of fiduciary duty, possible conversion or
misappropriation of WUT funds, discriminatory, selective and retaliatory enforcement of
WUT’s own administrative rules, shockingly abusive labor practices that violate Thai law,
negligent contracting practices that violate the Thailand Civil and Commercial Code, and
tortuously retaliatory and oppressive administrative practices committed by senior WUT
officials that should shock the conscience of any responsible university administrator.
Informed of such a litany of abuse, not only by me but many, many prior complainants, you are
under an ethical and legal obligation to take expeditious corrective action to address what can
only be described as an ongoing administrative crisis at WUT.
How is it possible that Webster University came to entrust the administration of its entire
operations at WUT to such an obviously unqualified and incompetent group of senior
administrators as (1) Ratish Thakur, Rector, (2) Nisha Ray Chaudhuri, Academic Head,
and (3) Ray R. Avecilla, Interim Head, School of Business and Technology? I have only
been exposed to their ministrations for a little over four months and it is totally obvious even to
me, a relative newcomer to this unfortunate scene, that these three individuals are not only
manifestly unqualified to assume the positions they hold, but have demonstrated their
incompetence in those positions on a virtually continuous basis in an extended historical pattern

Drs. Elizabeth J. Stroble, Schuster and Chapman
Webster University Thailand
26 October 2014
Page 2

of gross negligence, malfeasance, self-dealing and overt misconduct that is apparent upon even
the most cursory investigation into their appalling record as administrators.
Please allow me to explore with you one especially salient and important topic that has been
repeatedly brought to my attention by multiple, highly credible informants at WUT: the
allegation that Nisha Ray Chaudhuri, WUT’s “Academic Head,” currently does not actually
hold a doctoral degree, although she advertises herself as holding a “D.B.A.” on the WUT
website, but, oddly, without any mention of the university that supposedly granted her this
alleged degree:
Screen Capture from WUT Website on 26 October 2014

Source: http://www.webster.ac.th/academics/faculty/business-and-technology/

The following websites currently list Chaudhuri as being only a doctoral degree candidate in
the following words, “DBA Candidate @ Grenoble ecole [sic] de Management, France”:
https://twitter.com/NishaHere
http://twittercounter.com/NishaHere
The Fall 2014 Employee Directory of WUT lists Chaudhuri without a doctoral title as follows:
Title
Mrs.

Last Name
Ray Chaudhuri

First Name
Nisha

Drs. Elizabeth J. Stroble, Schuster and Chapman
Webster University Thailand
26 October 2014
Page 3

Chaudhuri’s Google Plus webpage merely states that she “Attended Grenoble ecole de
Management,” but, importantly, not that she has yet earned any degree there. (See https://plus.
google.com/101204857927921694775/posts.)
I find it exceedingly strange that while Chaudhuri claims to have a “D.B.A.” on the WUT
website, there is no mention whatsoever of the institution that allegedly granted her that degree.
The obvious reason for such an unusual omission is that the inclusion of the name of the
degree-granting institution would make it much easier to determine if the claimed degree had
actually been awarded. Thus, it would be safer for someone misrepresenting their academic
credentials to omit any reference to the institution that had supposedly granted the degree.
Needless to say, such an official, public misrepresentation of professional credentials
constitutes serious academic misconduct and could possibly expose Webster University to
substantial liability arising from the negligent hiring or negligent retention of Chaudhuri. It
is, of course, well known that university employers who retain administrators or other
employees who have misrepresented their credentials are potentially liable for damages
resulting from their negligent retention. In this connection, I would respectfully encourage you
to consult with your university legal counsel about the issue of your institution’s potential
exposure to the tort of negligent retention which arises from a breach of an employer‘s duty to
be cognizant of an employee‘s unfitness for his or her position and to take prompt corrective
action through remedial training, reassignment, suspension or termination.1
I would respectfully suggest that you undertake a similar investigation of the academic
background of Ratish Thakur as well.
In addition, I have been informed from reliable sources that Webster University (Thailand) has,
as you apparently already know, expended or loaned large sums of money for the tuition of
Thakur, Chaudhuri and one James Jain in doctoral degree programs at Grenoble École de
Management, an institution widely regarded as an undistinguished French diploma mill. The
fact that every single one of the recipients of this academic largess belongs to an inner circle of
WUT administrators who are all long-standing personal friends of the Thakur suggests that
their selection for this award had absolutely nothing to do with individual merit and was
entirely biased in favor of WUT administrative insiders loyal to Thakur. The use of WUT
funds in such a manner, therefore, may constitute a breach of fiduciary duty as a form of illicit
self-dealing.
You are all well aware from my filing yesterday and many prior, well-documented complaints
that the administrative situation on the Cha-am and Bangkok campuses is clearly out of control
and requires your immediate intervention before WUT administrators cause even greater
damage to the students, faculty and reputation of Webster University than has already occurred.
Of course, I am among those most seriously injured by the negligence and willful misconduct
1.

Marka B. Fleming and Angela K. Miles, “The Legal Ramifications for Employers When Job Candidates
Misrepresent Credentials to Secure Employment Positions,” ALSB Journal of Employment and Labor Law vol.
13 (Spring 2012): 23-43, 31-37, available at http://castle.eiu.edu/alsb/Spring%202012/The%20Legal%20
Ramifications%20for%20Employers%20when%20Job%20Candidates%20Misrepresent.pdf (last accessed 26
October 2014).

Drs. Elizabeth J. Stroble, Schuster and Chapman
Webster University Thailand
26 October 2014
Page 4

of Thakur, Chaudhuri and Avecilla since I have just been constructively dismissed after only
three months on the job without a long-term visa or work permit, which means I must, as result
of the retaliatory actions of WUT administrators, leave Thailand and re-enter on a short-term
tourist visa at great personal expense with a highly uncertain future. I cannot overstate the
extent to which the actions of WUT administrators have caused and continue to cause me and
many other faculty members and students extreme personal hardship. So, I would like to
exhort you to please take immediate corrective action before some worse catastrophe occurs.
I understand that there is an ongoing campus review, that includes the efforts of Mr. Craig
Mundle, the Director of Internal Audit at Webster University, and that you are now still in the
process of evaluating the situation at WUT, but I would like to respectfully suggest that the
situation at WUT is so extreme that immediate action is required.
RECOMMENDED ACTION
I respectfully recommend that to stop the ongoing abuses and irreparable harm currently being
inflicted upon innocent WUT students and faculty, prevent any further violations of their legal
rights and forestall worse catastrophes from occurring that you immediately and expeditiously
take the following actions:
(1)

suspend or dismiss immediately (1) Ratish Thakur (2) Nisha Ray Chaudhuri, (3) Ramona
Paun, (4) James Jain, and (5) Roy R. Avecilla, among others, to prevent them from
engaging in any further abusive retaliatory, negligent and illegal misconduct, and prohibit
their presence on any WUT campus while your investigation proceeds;

(2)

promote trustworthy competent faculty from the existing staff who have proven
themselves reliable over several years to fill the vacated administrative posts,
supplemented by new hires and temporarily transferred employees from your St. Louis
campus, if possible, to oversee WUT operations until the end of the semester or current
academic year;

(3)

temporarily close the WUT campuses for a brief period to facilitate an exhaustive audit
and thorough investigation of the practices of the suspended WUT administrators;

(4)

forthrightly explain to adversely affected students the situation with as much transparency
as legally permissible and enlist their support in the ongoing investigation with a view
toward making fundamental, transformative improvements in the delivery of educational
services at WUT; and

(5)

schedule a re-opening of the WUT campuses under completely new management and a
new business model.

While I have been egregiously injured and deeply disappointed by the negligent and willful
misconduct of WUT administrators, I am not unsympathetic to your situation as managers of
the parent institution attempting to cope effectively with an emergency located on the other side
of the world. So, I wanted to emphasize that although I have substantial disagreements with
local WUT administrators, you will find me, I hope, a reasonable and cooperative counterparty
in any constructive discussions concerning the resolution of my outstanding claims against

Drs. Elizabeth J. Stroble, Schuster and Chapman
Webster University Thailand
26 October 2014
Page 5

WUT arising from my constructive dismissal as well as the future development of WUT as an
institution of higher learning.
I have from the beginning of my work at WUT recognized that the institution, as opposed to its
current management team, has enormous potential and could become a beacon of progressive
education in Southeast Asia if intelligently, creatively and competently managed.
Despite all the abuses I have suffered at the hands of local WUT administrators, I still would
like to make a constructive contribution to resolving WUT’s administrative problems, if only
for the sake of my students at WUT whose welfare and education are my primary concern.
So, please let me emphasize in closing that if you are willing to be reasonable and take the
actions necessary to correct the administrative crisis that has beset WUT, you will find me an
enthusiastic supporter of such efforts and open to creative proposals for reform. Let all of us
hope that such a salutary outcome is still possible. Thank your time and attention. I look
forward to your reply.
Best wishes,

Dario Navarro
(Formerly) Lecturer
School of Business and Technology
Webster University (Thailand)