April 2, 2008

Dr. John B. Clark, Interim Chancellor, SUNY State University Plaza 353 Broadway Albany, NY 12246 Dear Dr. Clark:

In June, R. Thomas Flynn will be stepping down as president of Monroe Community College. Two independent search committees have identified two individuals with the qualifications to lead. However, some members of our Board of Trustees, spearheaded by John Parrinello, have set out to short-circuit this process and appoint one of their own, a political crony with absolutely no experience in higher education or educational administration. Mr. Parrinello set forth a list of 17 reasons for dismissing the results of the search committees. None of these reasons justify taking such a step. He argues that the names of the candidates were released to the press before they were publically revealed at the appropriate meeting. This is true; however, it is not clear where the leak came from (members of the Board knew these names, as well as the two committees involved), and the leak does not change the qualifications of the candidates. He also charges that the community committee was not constituted properly. There are three rebuttals to this charge. First, if he had objections to the membership of that committee, the time to bring that up was when the committee was formed, not after it has made its recommendations. Second, the College committee, created by the Faculty Senate, independently arrived at the same two qualified individuals, a testament to the reliability of the process. Third, his objection seems to rest on the fact that he was not part of the committee. Two other members of the Board are members; I fail to see why the mere fact that the committee did not contain John Parrinello makes it invalid. It is possible that the Board of Trustees will reject Mr. Parrinello’s assertions at its meeting tomorrow and allow the process to continue with integrity. This would be the best result. However, if the Board chooses to put cronyism above the academic integrity of MCC, I ask you, in your role of providing oversight to the process, to step in. I understand that such a move would be nearly unprecedented. However, if you could not take action this case, where the Board is so clearly focused on its own personal agenda rather than the good of the school and the community, then it would be apparent that SUNY’s oversight of the process is just a meaningless rubber stamp. I trust that this is not the case. Please step in to insure that MCC, and all of SUNY, maintains a high standard of excellence. Please, SAVE OUR SCHOOL. Thank you. Sincerely,

Dr. Celia Reaves Department of Psychology Monroe Community College copy: Mr. Carl Hayden, Chair, SUNY Board of Trustees

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