An open letter from the Save Chatham Management
Yesterday one of our members, after repeated requests to Dr. Esther Barazzone’s office, was given a copy of the Alumni Association Board meeting minutes from their November 2013 meeting, a meeting referenced by Esther in her comments at the March 11th town hall. We posted relevant excerpts from those minutes on a blog post that occurred very late last night/early this morning, depending on your timezone.
This morning, Gail Emery, Alumni Association Board President, posted a comment on that blog, revealing to us that the minutes we had been given were draft minutes and not the final minutes, as the final minutes, per routine, are only approved at the next meeting. That meeting is scheduled for April 2014.
So that we are clear, when we received these minutes from Bill Campbell, there was no mention of them being draft. Included here is the email in its entirety. The only edit made has been to black out the recipient’s email, though her name remains intact.
With the email was a single attachment, labled “Final Nov. 2013 Chatham AAB Meeting Minutes.pdf” This was the file that we used to pull the relevant excerpts from.
We apologize to the Alumni Association Board for any feeling of distrust that might have been fostered by our posting on minutes that we believed to be final. It was not our intention to post draft minutes, but we appreciate Ms. Emery’s clarification (you can find it in the comment section of the Dear Esther post linked above) as they continue to shed light on the fact that the administration has not been, and continues to not be, transparent in this process.
While we apologize to the Alumni Association Board, we express our extreme displeasure with the way that the administration handled this request. At best, if Mr. Campbell forwarded these minutes, not understanding that they were draft minutes (given the pattern of the Board to only approve final minutes at the next meeting), then it’s incompetence. At worst, if he forwarded the minutes knowing full well that they were a draft and knowing full well that they likely would be used publicly (given the request during the town hall and the fact that the request came from a known member of the Save Chatham movement) then you have a case of intentional interference with the transparency process, as well as a purposeful attempt to drive a wedge between all of the alumnae of the Save Chatham movement and the Alumni Association Board members who represent us.
Save Chatham will continue to pursue open lines of communication with the Dr. Barazzone, the Board of Trustees, and the rest of the Chatham administration in order to retain the College for Women and the 145 years of history that cannot, and should not, be so hastily upended.