James L. Fisher Ltd. Reports
Found on Internet

I call the Fisher Reports a license to steal. In the case of my own University our new president represented that the Fisher Report would be an unbiased assessment of our institution. This is most likely the norm when Fisher enters a university to do an assessment. University leadership that hire Fisher Ltd. in my view know in advance what their findings will be. Boards and faculty from my observation are then paralyzed to challenge, disagree, and identify an educational ideology. Report the University receives a James L. Fisher Award. The Universities that put these reports on the Internet are bringing those that are researching this national change valuable data. Even though I identified the consistencies in Fisher Reports to my colleagues, I was unsuccessful. Fisher and their benefactors focus on the board of governors. Faculty are powerless because they are not prepared in advance.

If you have other Fisher Reports that have been attained legally, we will add sections for educational purposes.

I used the Internet versions of reports below.

I have selected from reports to make my point. In my view the assessments of James L. Fisher Ltd. are derived from the educational philosophy of game theory. I do not know if this was luck or foresight. 

Governance of a University is placed by the Board under the control of the president.
Board's of Governors no longer share governance with the president and faculty.
The role of the Board is to assist the president when required.
The Board must reward the university president financially to keep them in the job. Fisher refers to the retention of the president as golden hand cuffs.
Faculty no longer share governance with the president and Board.
All external outlets of the university are controlled by the president.
All programs and courses fall under the control of the president.
All hiring and firing is under the control of the president.
All the resources of the university are under the control of the president.
All standards of performance of faculty are under the control of the president.
Merit pay is used by the president to drive a divide between new faculty and those with years of service.

Universities have survived because of the long term sharing of power. One individual or group was unable to make decisions without restraints that can topple the institution. Universities are now facing the same consequences experienced by our nation and corporations. This shift is founded on game theory were environments are created where individual greed and fear of others prevail. Many consolations and bankruptcies will follow to take an education away from the middle class. The education of the middle class is to be replaced with training using distance training. This is discussed in depth on my website marketingandstorytelling.com.


James L. Fisher Ltd. Bibliographies
Illinois State University James L. Fisher Ltd. Report 1998
University of Louisiana Monroe James L. Fisher Ltd. Report 2002
Eastern Washington University Fisher Report Referenced 2003
Auburn University James L. Fisher Ltd. Report 2006
Louisiana Tech University James L. Fisher Ltd. Report 2007

James L. Fisher Ltd. Biographies
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I added this list of James L. Fisher Ltd.'s staff that worked on the Illinois State University Report 1998. I believe that the below list of staff are updated and changed with each new assessment. To save space I used the above report's staff as an example.

Brief Biography

James L. Fisher has been a consultant to more than 300 colleges and universities and is the most published writer on leadership and organization in higher education today. He has written scores of professional articles and has also been published in such popular media as The New York Times, The Washington Times, and The Baltimore Sun. The author or editor of ten books, his book, The Board and the President, "clearly established him as the nation's leading authority on the college presidency," wrote Michael Worth of George Washington University reviewing in Currents. His The Power of the Presidency was reviewed in Change magazine as "... the most important book ever written on the college presidency" and was nominated for the non-fiction Pulitzer Prize. His book, Presidential Leadership: Making a Difference, has been reviewed as "...a major, impressive, immensely instructive book, ...a virtual Dr. Spock for aspiring or new college presidents, and ...a must read for all trustees." His recent book, Positive Power, is quickly gaining popularity throughout the United States and internationally: The modern Machiavelli...from Aegon to Zenix...persuasive and to the point,@ Baltimore Sun. There is definitely something happening with this book. We are out of stock already,@ National Book Network His newest book, The Entrepreneurial College President (2004), was published by the American Council on Education/Praeger Publishers. He is presently writing a book on effective corporate leadership which should be published in 2006.
A registered psychologist with a Ph.D. from Northwestern University, he is President Emeritus of the Council for Advancement & Support of Education (CASE) and President Emeritus of Towson University. He has taught at Northwestern, Illinois State, Johns Hopkins, Harvard, and the University of Georgia. He coined the term institutional review and has conducted hundreds of institutional and governance reviews for public and private institutions and systems. He also conducts board orientations and retreats and consults on presidential searches, evaluations and contracts.
Dr. Fisher has been a trustee at ten private colleges and universities and two preparatory schools. A former Marine, he presently serves as a board member of Millikin University, Florida Institute of Technology, Marine Corps University and the Marine Military Academy. He has received awards for teaching, writing, citizenship and leadership and has been awarded eleven honorary degrees. At Illinois State, The Outstanding Thesis Award was named by the faculty, The James L. Fisher Thesis Award. The faculty at Towson University recommended that the new psychology building be named after Dr. Fisher, and the CASE Distinguished Service to Education Award bears his name.

While president at Towson, The Baltimore Sun wrote that he was a "master educational politician....under his leadership, enrollment doubled, quality went up and costs went down." In Washington, Newsweek magazine reported that, while President at CASE, his national campaign, The Action Committee for Higher Education (ACHE) resulted in "more than $1 billion in student financial aid." CASE also created and orchestrated the "America's Energy is Mindpower" campaign, "Higher Education Week" and "The Professor of the Year" awards. For several years, he did a popular daily radio commentary on WBAL in Baltimore and has been an occasional OP/ED feature writer for The Baltimore Sun. Through the years, Dr. Fisher has been encouraged by leaders in both parties to run for Governor or Senate.

Gene A. Budig, Brief Biography

Dr. Budig served as President of the American League for six years (1994-2000) and oversaw the operations of 14 clubs and the construction of $2.2 billion worth of new ballparks. He was a Senior Adviser to Major League Baseball for three years (2000-2003). MLB is a $4.4 billion a year enterprise. He served as a Scholar in Residence at the College Board from 2002 to 2005, and was a member of the faculty at Princeton University during the 2000-2001 and 2001-2002 school years. He is now College Board Professor and Senior Presidential Adviser. He authored a book on the economics of baseball, The Inside Pitch, And More, for the West Virginia University Press in 2004. He wrote another book on leading the modern college and university, A Game of Uncommon Skill, for the American Council on Education Series on Higher Education in 2002. He chairs College Ed, a national program funded by the Gates Foundation, which is designed to increase college attendance by 15 to 18 percent. He is a member of the National Commission on Writing in Americas Schools and Colleges, and a member of the National Center for Innovative Thought.

Dr. Budig has headed three major state universities, each with enrollments of more than 22,000 students. The institutions were Illinois State University, West Virginia University, and the University of Kansas. He was a Professor of Higher Education Finance at ISU, WVU, KU, and the University of Nebraska. Over a period of 23 years he was responsible for the educational programs of 520,000 students.
Dr. Budig oversaw the administration of $8.1 billion in educational funds, both public and private.

He is a retired Major General, Air National Guard/United States Air Force. His last assignment was Assistant to the Chief, National Guard Bureau, and the Army and Air National Guard had components at the time in all 50 states and 573,000 members and an annual operational budget of nearly $9 billion.

He was appointed Chief of Staff for the Governor of Nebraska, serving three years early in his career (1964-67). Dr. Budig had responsibility for 7,500 faculty and staff at ISU, 10,500 faculty and staff at WVU, and 12,500 faculty and staff at KU. He led these universities in long-range planning initiatives designed to enhance the learning experience of students. He was one of five executives named to establish a long-term business plan for Major League Baseball, a plan that produced record attendance of more than 72 million fans.

He served on the Executive Committee of the Kansas University Endowment Association during his l3 years as Chancellor (1981 to 1994) and the Association built an endowment of more than $1 billion. He played a central role in raising funds and determining allocations to a wide array of educational programs.
He was recognized as one who could raise large amounts of private money for the public good at state universities. He headed successful fund drives at WVU and KU. He played a leadership role in Major League Baseball Charities, especially as it related to the creation of education and recreation programs in the major cities.
Dr. Budig has written essays for the Kansas City Star, New York Times, Omaha World-Herald, and USA TODAY. The Associated Press has carried reports of his studies on gubernatorial views in the 1960s and 1970s, and he has authored more than 70 articles for academic journals.

James V. Koch, Brief Biography

James V. Koch is Board of Visitors Professor of Economics and President Emeritus at Old Dominion University, Norfolk, VA. Dr. Koch served as President of Old Dominion 1990-2001. Prior to that, he was President of the University of Montana, 1986-1990. An Exxon Foundation study of American college presidents selected him as one of the 100 most effective college presidents in the United States. During his tenure at Old Dominion, the University recorded its first Rhodes Scholar, developed the largest televised, interactive distance learning system in the United States, and initiated more than $300 million in new construction.

Dr. Koch is an economist who has published nine books and 90 refereed journal articles in the field. His Industrial Organization and Prices was the leading text in this specialty for several years. The focus of his current research is the economics of e-commerce. He has taught at institutions ranging from Illinois State University to Brown University, the University of Hawaii, and the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology. His Presidential Leadership: Making a Difference, co-authored with James L. Fisher, is regarded as the definitive work concerning college presidents and their boards. He has been individually or collectively involved in the assessment of more than 30 presidents and institutions of higher education.

Dr. Koch earned a B.A. degree from Illinois State University and his Ph.D. degree in Economics from Northwestern University. He has received three honorary doctoral degrees from universities in Japan and Korea and has received a host of honors from organizations such as the Urban League, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and several regional economic development agencies.

Alvin J. Schexnider, Brief Biography

Alvin J. Schexnider, Ph.D., is Interim President of Norfolk State University. He previously served as Acting President of Norfolk State University from June 2004 to January 2005. A former Chancellor of Winston-Salem State University, he has held faculty and administrative positions at Southern University, Syracuse University, The Federal Executive Institute, the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Virginia Commonwealth University and Wake Forest University.
A native of Lake Charles, Louisiana, Dr. Schexnider earned a B.A. degree in political science at Grambling State University. He received the M.A. and Ph.D. in political science from Northwestern University where he held Norman Wait Harris, Ford Foundation and Woodrow Wilson fellowships.

Dr. Schexnider is a Fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration and is the recipient of numerous honors and awards including the J. Sergeant Reynolds Award for Outstanding Service in Public Administration, The Grambling State University Distinguished Alumni Award, and the Alpha Phi Alpha Distinguished Educator of the Year Award.
Dr. Schexnider is a coauthor of Blacks and the Military (Brookings Institution) and has written extensively on urban politics and civil military relations. He has served on the editorial boards of Public Administration Review and the Journal of Power and Ethics. He was featured in two documentaries regarding construction of the Alaska Canada Highway, one produced for American Legacy in 2003 and another produced for the Public Broadcasting System (PBS) American Experience Series in 2005.

Dr. Schexnider serves on several boards and committees including the Board of Governors of the Town Point Club, the Executive Committee of the Greater Norfolk Corporation, and the Board of the Early Childhood Initiative of the Norfolk Foundation. From 1992 to 1998, he was a trustee of Marketwatch Funds and from 1998 to 2002, he was a trustee of Wachovia Funds and Municipal Funds. He is a former member of the North Carolina Economic Development Board and the Executive Committee of Richmond Renaissance, Inc. He is also a former Vice President of the Virginia Board of Education and former Chairman of the Southern Regional Council of the College Board. He is married and the father of a son and a daughter.

Kenneth A. Shaw, Brief Biography

Dr. Kenneth A. Shaw is a nationally respected administrator and educator. Recently retired as the tenth Chancellor of Syracuse University, he served as a university president for nearly 30 years. Prior to coming to Syracuse in 1991, he was President of the University of Wisconsin System. Based in Madison, Wisconsin, Shaw presided over the 26-campus system which serves more than 160,000 students. In addition, Shaw was Chancellor of the Southern Illinois University System from 1979 to 1986, President of Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville from 1977 to 1979, and Vice President and Dean of the University at Towson State University from 1969 to 1977.

As Chancellor of Syracuse University, Shaw served more than 10,500 undergraduates and 4,000 graduate students on the Central New York campus. Founded in 1870, Syracuse University is noted as a leading student centered research institution which offers both a strong liberal arts and professional studies education. Syracuse is one of 59 members of the prestigious Association of American Universities. Syracuse University was described in the July/August 2001 edition of Change magazine as an institution that has been brilliantly successful over the last 10 years ... in creating consensus for its refined mission, building an infrastructure to support it, and changing its campus culture. Shaw was recently recognized by authors Fisher and Koch as one of the nations top entrepreneurial presidents in their most recent book on the subject.

Shaw is the recipient of honorary degrees from eight universities and he was awarded the NCAA's Silver Anniversary Award in 1986. In 2003, he earned the Council for the Advancement and Support of Educations District II Chief Executive Leadership Award.

Shaw is the author of over 40 articles dealing with higher education and leadership. His first book, The Successful President, was published in 1999; his second, Intentional Leadership, will be published in August, 2005. It deals with the generic understandings and skills that every leader or would be leader needs.

Dr. Shaw is the past chair of the NY States Commissioners Advisory Council on Higher Education, a past member of the board of directors of the Student Loan Marketing Association and a past member of the Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities. He served on the New York State Governors Commission on Education Reform. Shaw has also served on the boards of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities and the American Council on Education. In the Syracuse community, he is a member of the boards of directors of the Chamber of Commerce, the Unity Mutual Life Insurance Company, and is the chairman of the Metropolitan Development Association.

Born in Granite City, Illinois, Shaw earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Illinois State University in 1961, a master of education degree from the University of Illinois Urbana in 1963, and a Ph.D. from Purdue University in 1966.
Shaw presently serves as Chancellor Emeritus and University Professor at Syracuse.

Farris W. Womack, Brief Biography

Consultant - Universities, Governments, Venture Capital, Internet Companies, 1998 -
The University of Michigan - Ann Arbor, Michigan 1988 - 1998
Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
The University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill, North Carolina 1983 - 1988
Vice Chancellor for Business and Finance
State of North Carolina - Raleigh, North Carolina 1986 - 1988
Controller, Chief Financial Officer During my tenure as Controller, I also served as CFO of the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
State of Arkansas - Little Rock, Arkansas 1981 -1983
Chief Fiscal Officer of the State and Director, Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration
The University of Arkansas - Fayetteville, Arkansas 1975 - 1981
Executive Vice President (1979 - 1981)
Vice President for Administration (1977-1979)
Director of Budgets (1976-1977)
Director of Institutional Research (1975-1976)
The Arkansas State University - Jonesboro, Arkansas 1971 - 1975 Director of Institutional Research
Previous Experience - Assistant to the President, Henderson State University; Computer Analyst, Reynolds
Metals Company; Public School Administrator and Teacher

EDUCATION: Ed. D. - The University of Arkansas 1972, Educational Administration
M. Ed. - The University of Arkansas 11000, Educational Administration
A. B. - University of Central Arkansas 1955, History, Political Science, and English

Michael J. Worth, Brief Biography

Michael J. Worth has more than thirty years of experience in philanthropic resource development and is one of the most recognized fund-raising professionals in the nation. He served for eighteen years as Vice President for Development and Alumni Affairs at The George Washington University and previously served as Director of Development at the University of Maryland College Park. At GW, he planned and directed two major campaigns, including the $500-million Centuries Campaign. He also served as professional staff to the Universitys Board of Trustees, with responsibility for board development. He is Professor of Nonprofit Management at the GW School of Public Policy and Public Administration and teaches graduate courses related to the management of nonprofit organizations, fund raising, and nonprofit boards.

Dr. Worth is one of the most widely-known speakers and writers in the field of fund raising and institutional advancement. He has been a frequent speaker at conferences of the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), and the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB).

In addition to numerous articles, reviews, and conference papers, he has written or edited five books, including Public College and University Development (1985), The Role of the Development Officer in Higher Education (1994), and Educational Fund Raising: Principles and Practice, published in 1993 by the American Council on Education (ACE) and Oryx Press, New Strategies for Educational Fund Raising, published by ACE and Praeger Publishers in 2002, and Securing the Future: A Fund-Raising Guide for Boards of Independent Colleges and Universities, published by AGB in 2005.

Dr. Worth has served as a member of CASEs Commission on Philanthropy and as editor of the CASE International Journal of Educational Advancement, a scholarly journal related to the fields of alumni relations, communications, and philanthropy. He advised CASE as Special Consultant for Executive Education and has served as a faculty member at the Harvard Institutes for Higher Education. Dr. Worth holds a B.A. in economics from Wilkes College, an M.A. in economics from The American University, and a Ph.D. in Higher Education from the University of Maryland.

Martha Wingard Tack, Brief Biography

Martha W. Tack is a tenured professor in the Educational Leadership Program within the Department of Leadership and Counseling at Eastern Michigan University (EMU). At EMU, she has served in several leadership positions including senior executive for presidential initiatives and headquarters administrator for the Coalition of Urban and Metropolitan Universities (CUMU); associate vice president for academic affairs; and associate dean in the College of Education. Dr. Tack was responsible for the implementation of the institution's first doctoral program, a Doctor of Education degree in educational leadership. During a leave of absence from EMU, she served as associate dean and tenured professor of educational leadership in the School of Education at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Before her affiliation with EMU, Dr. Tack was a tenured faculty member at Bowling Green State University and the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa where she also served as Assistant-to-the-President and director of the Women's Studies Program.

She was State Coordinator of the Michigan ACE Network for Women Leaders in Higher Education and chair of the 16-member Executive Board. Under her leadership, the Michigan Network received the coveted 2005 American Council on Education National Network and Program Award for Outstanding, Innovative, and Visionary Programs Benefiting Women Leaders. She served on the Board of Trustees of the National Business and Professional Women's Foundation and was Chair of the Foundation's Research and Information Committee. She was a member of the Board of Trustees for The University of Findlay (Ohio) from which she received an honorary doctorate. In 2005, she began a 3-year term as a Trustee for the Mortar Board National Foundation.

Dr. Tack has received external funding to study issues in leadership from several agencies. For example, she and Dr. James L. Fisher were awarded a grant from the U.S. Department of Education Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE) to complete and deliver a FIPSE lecture on the "Effective College President." The grant was one of six awarded nationally. She and Dr. Fisher also received research funding from the Exxon Education Foundation. The National Federation of Business and Professional Women's Clubs, Inc. and the W. K. Kellogg Foundation have also supported Tacks initiatives.

In addition to numerous articles, she co-authored (with Patitu) an ASHE/ERIC Higher Education Report entitled Faculty Job Satisfaction: Women and Minorities in Peril. She also has co-authored (with Fisher) two books on college administration: The Effective College President and Leaders on Leadership: The College Presidency, New Directions for Higher Education.
A native of Eclectic, Alabama, she graduated summa cum laude from Troy State University; received her M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from The University of Alabama (Tuscaloosa).

Illinois State University, James L. Fisher Ltd. Report 1998
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On September 27-30, 1998, a team of five persons, each widely experienced in higher education and none having any present association with Illinois State University, reviewed the general condition of the University (Appendix A). The Review was authorized by the Board of Trustees, chaired by William D. Sulaski. The Review included processing materials and conducting interviews from May 12 through October 27, 1998.

The purpose of the Review was to assist the Board of Trustees in assessing the general condition of the University and in conducting the Presidential search process. It was felt that a completely objective assessment would:
(1) Candidly identify and address issues affecting Illinois State and help establish a
tentative agenda for the immediate future;
(2) Be of value to prospective Presidential candidates;
(3) Assist the Search Committee in establishing Presidential criteria; and
(4) Help the Board and the Search Committee assess and illuminate conditions that
would make the Presidency more attractive to first-rate candidates.

In addition, the Review might offer these benefits:
(1) The Board of Trustees would have a more accurate impression of Illinois State and approve more specific and realistic plans and expectations.
(2) Faculty, administrators, students, alumni, elected and appointed officials, the
media, the general public, and all other concerned parties would need to consider a
legitimate and less biased opinion of Illinois State that might differ from their own.
(3) The region, the state and beyond would have a heightened awareness of, and
interest in, Illinois State because of the involvement in the Review and a public
report on the results.

The team also focused on problems and prospects facing the new President and his or her 2 most desirable characteristics.

Before beginning interviews, the members of the team held discussions with members of the Board and staff. Team members also read and evaluated materials assembled by Illinois State staff and confidential position papers prepared by key persons. All counted, interview and focus groups included over 300 persons including faculty, students, staff, alumni, elected/appointed officials, area residents, local business persons, Board members, media representatives,
benefactors, and potential benefactors, persons selected because of special knowledge and randomly selected persons from the community (Appendix B). Interviews were based on position, stratified random sample, and random sample. All interviews followed a general format that included 17 separate areas (Appendix C).

This Review is the exclusive work of James L. Fisher LTD and should not be attributed to individual members of the Review team.


Illinois State University, founded in 1857, is the oldest publically-supported institution of higher education in Illinois.

Amidst this praise, however, it must be noted that over the years the general disposition of students for the University has waned from one of pride to apathy or apology. Frequently students, and some faculty, refer to the University as K Mart U or I Screwed Up and other denigrating terms.

There also lurks another potential problem (and a subsequent opportunity). The faculty is graying and in several Colleges (Arts and Sciences, Business, and Education) older faculty are beginning to predominate. In Fall 1997, almost 30 percent of the Universitys fulltime faculty had served at the institution for 20 or more years, and more than 40 percent had served more than 15 years. The mean age of those serving in the rank of Professor is almost 55, suggesting that many faculty are approaching retirement. The problem, according to some students and some colleagues, is that some of these faculty serve with diminished enthusiasm and are reluctant to try new approaches, for example, those that involve the use of new instructional technologies. Further, many of these faculty do not have records as publishing and performing scholars even though they are involved with graduate students.

The opportunity, of course, is to replace these faculty with excellent, vibrant younger faculty who are on the cutting edges of their disciplines. In order to do so, the University would be well advised to consider offering flexible incentives to selected faculty in order to stimulate their retirement, while at the same time fashioning the hiring process for new faculty so that truly exceptional new faculty replace those who retire. Illinois State faces a matchless opportunity to add to its ranks a cohort of young, enthusiastic faculty who will, interterenalia, hold the Universitys very future in their hands.

Hastening change in the faculty is essential. Our interviews with senior faculty revealed that several openly confessed that they have been turned off by a variety of factors (mostly relating to administration and support) in their environment at Illinois State and that as a consequence they have vowed not to expend more effort than directly required. Others suggested that they have given up on the institution ever realizing its lofty goals of years past and now focus their attention solely on teaching their classes and working with their students, and thereby dispensing with research, committee service, grant writing, and the like. All institutions contain some faculty who assert that morale has never been lower than it is today (the words of a veteran faculty member). Illinois State may have more than most at this juncture in its history for a variety of reasons. Revivifying such faculty and/or providing them with attractive retirement incentives and subsequently replacing them must be a high priority for the next President.

Academic Leadership

Faculty want to see, and deserve to have, a President and other top University officers who espouse strong academic values. We caution all who read this that there is little evidence that a President who has taught, published, and undertaken all of the usual professorial duties, is more effective in office than one who has not. It is essential, however, that the next President understand academic issues, that he/she profess strong academic values, that he/she stand for academic quality and rigor, and that he/she be supported by a Provost whose academic
pedigrees, experience, and values are impeccable. Further, the next President needs to enunciate the principle that the academic purpose of the University is most important, and that the remainder of the University exists to support and advance the Universitys raison detre, the teaching-learning process (which we take to be inclusive of scholarly productivity, which is a specialized form of teaching). These may seem to be unarguable propositions; however, our discussions with faculty suggest that their enunciation by the new President would pay dividends.


The Illinois State University faculty numbers about 1,000, of which about 800 are fulltime. Of these 800, approximately 83 percent are tenured or tenure-line. The University is fond of noting that 15 percent or less of its overall course sections are taught by part-time and adjunct faculty. Over and over again, we encountered individuals who told us that the overriding thing to know about Illinois States faculty is that they care about their students and they care about the University. There is little doubt that the typical faculty member is devoted to the University and devoted to his/her responsibilities. Representative were the comments of a veteran faculty member who stated that Despite a lack of appreciation for our efforts, we really work hard and do our jobs. We are professionals and students are the beneficiaries. Defining faculty work loads has never been an easy task. However, many faculty members at Illinois State teach 12 hours per semester (which is a bit more than the average at most Carnegie Doctoral I institutions) and the typical faculty member generated 738 semester hours of credit in a recent year. Compare this to the Illinois public university average of 628. Illinois
States 738 semester hour mean suggests that each FTE faculty member handled almost 250 students per year, or 125 per semester. This implies, for example, that a typical faculty member teaches four classes of at least 30 students each semester. This is a very respectable load for which Illinois State need not apologize when confronted by individuals who believe that faculty do not work.

As noted earlier, slowly, perhaps subtly, the Illinois State University faculty has been maturing. Many of its faculty are of the 1960s and 1970s vintages. The mean age of full professors is almost 55, and 40 percent of faculty have served at Illinois State more than 15 years. Colleges such as Arts and Sciences, Education, and Business have the most senior faculties. We believe that the University must pay attention to this graying phenomenon by: (1) developing a targeted program of retraining and refocusing senior faculty members so that they can become productive and meet student and institutional needs better; and,  (2) developing a set of incentives that will encourage early retirement of selected faculty. Illinois State should not sit still and watch its faculty gray or become irrelevant. Since Illinois State is hardly the first institution of higher education to face these challenges, it should look to the experience of other institutions and adopt their best practices.

At the same time, with joint faculty and administrative participation, the institution
should develop a truly meaningful evaluation of tenured faculty policy that utilizes peer evaluations to identify those faculty whose level of productivity has fallen below expected levels. The policy should stress peer evaluation, provide warnings, focus upon faculty improvement, and require improvement plans that are approved by colleagues and the appropriate college dean. However, the policy must also contain the teeth necessary to terminate an individual from the faculty after several years if that faculty member does not improve. Just as faculty members should expect the President and the Board of Trustees to respect them and their craft, and provide them with appropriate, non-trivial participation in the governance process, they must tidy up their own shop and demonstrate that in a corporate sense, they can and do police their own ranks. Tenure and evaluation policies that literally require near death performances in the classroom by faculty before termination is considered do not reflect well on faculty professionalism and, needless to say, damage faculty when they argue for more respect and voice in governance processes. The harm done by a few tenured faculty who scoff at respectable standards of performance, and whose performance is unacceptably low, cannot be underestimated insofar as public opinion is concerned. In a phrase, the University must police its own ranks. This action would arm the faculty with significant moral suasion in its governance discussions with the new President and the Board of Trustees.

At least somewhat related to all of the issues raised in this section is the perception
by some faculty that the salary structure is slowly being altered to diminish the role of merit salary increments. We cannot think of any institution that Illinois State wishes to emulate that does not place a strong emphasis upon merit salary increments and does not eschew significant across the board increments. Put simply, if the University stands for excellence in all that it undertakes, then its salary system should reflect this commitment, and rewards and incentives should go to those faculty members who exhibit the most excellence and those who are the most productive.

Of particular concern to the team is the proposed new ASPT document (the draft
24 dated 9 September 1998) which, besides being excessively bureaucratic and full of timeconsuming process, would institutionalize two adverse developments. First, it would make it possible for individual departments to move essentially to an across the board system of allocating salary increment dollars. Second, in the new system, department chairs and deans would have little means to counteract across the boardism (as one faculty member described it) and, indeed, neither chairs nor the college deans would have independent voices in salary, promotion, and tenure decisions. We believe this is a recipe for a slow descent toward lower standards and mediocrity and urge the faculty and the new President to modify and, if necessary, reject any such proposals, after providing all parties with
appropriate opportunities to state their views. Then, the campus should be inspired to move in more productive directions.

We would be remiss if we did not report that numerous faculty members reported to us that faculty morale at Illinois State is quite low. Ive never seen it this bad, said a senior faculty member. Faculty members, in general, are not easily satisfied and frequently bemoan their own circumstances. That point having been made, we agree that faculty morale is quite low at Illinois State, primarily because of the governance battles and the perception on the part of a clear majority of faculty that the Board of Trustees has not treated them with respect. They view us
as obstacles, said one faculty member, while another argued that The Board and some administrators have acted as if they despise faculty.

We could provide numerous other quotes, but the picture is clear. For a variety of reasons (governance issues being only one), many faculty feel unappreciated, ignored, and treated with disdain. Some (but only some) of this comes from faculty members who feel that the Board has in fact violated the implicit (some say explicit) social contract that they believe guided shared governance at Illinois State for the last three decades. But others are dismayed by a miscellany of
other grievances, for example, lax admission policies, the perceived downgrading of graduate work and research, a failure to maintain facilities and offices in ship shape, and alleged incompetence or appreciation of certain administrative functions such as fund-raising.

On the basis of our conversations and observations, we believe that the foremost
thing the University must do to improve campus morale (including that of faculty) is to resolve the outstanding governance issues, firmly and reasonably. The Board of Trustees should initiate conversations that will lead to resolution (see our suggestions in a section below) and should bring these to fruition before the new President arrives on campus. But, we hasten to point out, progress on the most important governance issues will require that the various parties listen to each other and be willing to compromise without forcing the Board to give up its statutory authority.

Then, the new President must articulate a vision for Illinois State University that
respects the Universitys roots and traditions, but moves it forward energetically into the 21st century. That vision should speak with certainty to the issues that we have posed, including the role of research and graduate work, and the viability of the Public Ivy model. While, without question, there are real reasons for the melancholy, sometimes 25 angry, mood of the campus, it also is true that some existing morale problems simply relate to uncertainty. Campus constituents do not know what is true, and what is not. The new President, working with campus constituencies and the Board, should resolve many of these uncertainties. It is a time for constructive, visionary, vibrant leadership.
If it is true, as one veteran faculty member charged, that we have been cursed with incompetent or ineffective leaders, then the new President should promptly take those steps necessary to unite the campus and move it in substantive directions. Given potentially momentous changes in higher education that have been occurring (distance learning being but one), this is not a time for Illinois State University to be caught up in such strife.


The current governance disputes that Illinois State University is enduring were variously
described to us as:
"a royal mess"
"an accident of history"
"the result of an inexperienced Board not understanding the campus"
"an object lesson of the mischief that can occur when faculty are allowed to run a
"simply the result of poor communication"
"the consequence of having some of the least capable professors in our Senate"
"the logical outgrowth of the State trying to impose an unworkable business model on higher education"
"a product of a faculty that doesn't know it can only recommend"
"the culmination of lots of history on both sides"
"what else would you expect from a Board that really does not respect what we do"
of little consequence to the faculty, Im more concerned about the general education
"illegal actions by the new Board"
students could care less about governance issues
"something worth fighting about"
"something not worth fighting about because it only distracts us from what we should be doing"
"the result of 'behind the back,' surprise actions by the Board"
"a complete misunderstanding of the meaning of shared governance by most faculty"
"something that does not reflect much credit on this University"
"nothing that cannot be mediated and solved if reasonable people sit down together"
"will never get solved if faculty radicals lead the show"
"something that would never have occurred if past presidents and past boards had not sold the farm"
"gross stupidity on the part of otherwise intelligent faculty who do not understand that higher education has changed and they must change with it"
"a bleeding sore that better be tended to before we get a new President"
"the consequence of the Governor appointing too many untrained, inexperienced people to our Board"
"a fight that is being fanned by faculty members who want a union"
"has nothing to do with unions; we don't think about them"
"this has turned otherwise reasonable people into 'hard liners'"
There are quite literally countless opinions about the governance quarrels that the faculty, sometimes via its Academic Senate, has been having with some administrators and the Board of Trustees. The arguments put forward by the various parties often have become polemic in nature and it no longer can be taken for granted that each side is listening to each other seriously. Yet, as we shall see, there are reasonable grounds for ending this crisis, albeit that not all parties concerned will be completely satisfied.

In attempting to disentangle this situation, we feel confident in making the following observations:
* Most students neither know nor care about these governance issues and are much more concerned with educational quality, tuition rates, food and entertainment, job markets, and the like.
* A large majority of the faculty fervently wishes these matters will be solved quickly and then go away, even while many of the faculty feel wronged by the Board.
* A majority of the faculty interviewed believe that the Academic Senate is an
impediment to settlement because of the personalities involved and positions it has
* Members of the Board of Trustees are individuals of good will who want only
what is best for Illinois State. They are bewildered by the abuse that they have
received from some faculty. As a group, they understand that the manner in
which they have handled these disputes has not been skillful.
* Effective presidential leadership over the past decades probably would have
averted the current crisis. However, governance documents, dating back to the
fifties, contain within them the seeds of perennial dispute because of their
language. Since 1969, even the most able President would not have been able to
avoid problems.
* Very few individuals on the campus seem to understand the origins and meaning of the term "shared governance." The most vociferous persons believe that the
President is a facilitator whose weight in campus issues is equal to that of any
other faculty member.
* The President, in the last few months of his presidency, should represent the
faculty to the Board, and the Board to the faculty.

Recent Governance History

Illinois State University has had a rich history of quality performance, first, as a single purpose, teacher education institution, and in its modern history as a multi-purpose institution offering degrees at the baccalaureate, masters, and doctoral levels. Over the years people have described Illinois State as a friendly place where newcomers feel welcome and where students learn and grow with considerable caring and guidance.While described as a friendly place, many of those interviewed described it as a contentious environment often contentious over relatively minor issues. One interviewee said it best: It is good to argue, even fight, for important issues. But here it seems that people want to argue over everything. A lot of time is wasted over arguing, and I blame Illinois States system of governance for some of this.

We wonder just how much better Illinois State could be now and in the future if there were less contention. It is perhaps not fair to describe Illinois State as a graveyard for presidents but it comes close. Since the revised Constitution of 1969 there have been five sitting presidents and one interim appointment a remarkable number even in these days where presidential tenure has been greatly shortened. Two senior administrators left after votes of no confidence. Again, one wonders what could have been done as well as what can be done to strengthen the ability of presidents to provide leadership.

Illinois State has had a strong system of faculty involvement in decision-making since the early 50s when the University Council of Illinois State University played a major role. While Presidents Fairchild and Bone were seen as strong presidents, even then institutional structures permitted a major role for the University Council in decision-making for faculty and senior administrators. There was little, if any, role for students at that time, a matter which would be attended to in the 1969 Constitutional change. The University Council Bylaws, passed by that body on September 18, 1951, provided for a governing body of 15 members 3 senior
administrators and 12 faculty elected from the faculty at large. It concerned itself with such matters as:
1. the appointment of administrative officers and their evaluation at regular intervals;
2. the recruiting, appointing, promoting, dismissing, and granting of tenure to members of the faculty;
3. the preparation of the University budget;
4. the establishment of the calendar and unscheduled holidays;
5. the establishment of policies governing curricula and requirements for graduation;
6. the establishment of policies governing admission, remaining in good standing, and the scholastic performance of students generally;
7. the establishment of policies governing campus planning and building construction utilization;
8. the establishment of policies governing facilities for teaching, research, and related activities;
9. the establishment of policies governing student welfare, activities, discipline, and
participation in University government; and
10. the establishment of basic policies of the University not otherwise enumerated in these bylaws.

These powers and duties would be the vehicle by which faculty would participate in
University governance. This is not a remarkable list of duties; what is remarkable is its inclusive nature at a time when strong presidents were also for the most part seen as dictatorial, where there was little shared governance across the country.
What is even more remarkable, however, is the means by which controversial matters, those where the President and the University Council might be at odds, would be resolved. The University Council Bylaws provided for a referendum process to handle such eventualities. Under the Bylaws, Council decisions would become policy unless the faculty as a whole, through one of the referenda procedures, overrode the decision. If the President disagreed with a Council
decision, he/she could request a referendum on any Council decision or action. If the faculty supported the President, the Council decision or action would be invalid; but if it supported the Council, and the President did not concur, he or the Council would have the option of presenting the matter to the Chairman of the Board for resolution.

The referendum process was used only once, but clearly the very existence of this process set the stage for a weakened leadership role for the President and a stronger leadership role for faculty and senior administration. This is in dramatic contrast to the more typical and accepted approach in 1950, and even today, where the faculty or the appropriate governance group recommends policy to the President who either accepts or rejects those recommendations knowing full well that the system only works if rejections are always explained and few and far
between. Even the AAUP 1966 Joint Statement on Government of Colleges and Universities stops far short of the Illinois State 1950s approach to governance. It called for the faculty or appropriate governance group to forward recommendations to the president, who may or may not endorse their positions to the board. It suggested that the president convey faculty views, including dissenting views to the board before board decisions are made. These early years
established a pattern for governance which appeared in another form during the Modern Governance period.

The Presidents role at Illinois State then, by the Bylaws, was essentially that of an equal --a member of the decision-making group whose decisions become binding unless the President chose to go through the referendum process and then directly to the Board. The old system allowed for little presidential initiative.

Modern Governance 1969 -1998
The 1969 Constitution was a consensus document hammered out by a Constitution
committee of faculty, students and staff. It was considered a brave new document for what would be extremely challenging times and, as was the norm in that time period, included a large number of students on the newly formed Academic Senate. The Senate consisted of a faculty majority, a substantial number of students, and some senior administrators.

This new Constitution defined the role of the President and, in considerable detail, the function of the newly established Academic Senate. It listed 16 functions for the Senate which was described as the primary body to determine the educational policy of the University and to advise the President on its implementation. It also stated in the performance of these functions the Senate shall provide the method by which members of the academic community shall be involved in exercising authority in over 16 areas. What is unique about these functions is that 10 of the 16 were areas where policy was to be determined by that body -- not recommendations made to the President. That authority included such areas as admissions; degree requirements; the academic calendar; educational conduct standards; intercollegiate programs and activities policies; student life and conduct; the appointment, promotion, remuneration, retention and evaluation of faculty; and the protection of rights and privileges of members of the University community, among others. The remaining areas were ones where the Senate either participated in or advised the President.

The use of to determine instead of to recommend wasnt just a question of semantic game playing; it described how things were to be done. One interviewee cynically described it this way: ... the true role of the Academic Senate is to make sure the administration cannot achieve anything.

The 1969 Bylaws also provided for Academic Senate participation in the selection of a new University President as well as faculty and student participation in the selection of administrators. Insofar as the latter is concerned, the Academic Senate was to have responsibility for the procedures involved in selecting and appointing administrators so that while the President was responsible for the nomination of all administrative officers to the Board of Regents, the Academic Senates role was to determine the procedures by which that decision is made and later, as we will see, determine the membership of search committees.

Over the course of the next 25 years there were approximately 20 amendments to the 1969 Constitution including several which further weakened the Presidents ability to lead and, in the following case, that of the governing board, the Board of Regents, which governed Illinois State from 1967 through 1995. An amendment, passed in 1989, set out new procedures for the selection of future University Presidents prescribing the composition of that committee and making the Academic Senate responsible for providing to the Board of Regents the names of the University representatives.

Another amendment, in 1990, provided for a Joint University Advisory Committee to the Board of Regents. The Academic Senate would be responsible for electing four representatives to serve on the Joint University Advisory Committee to the Board of Regents three of whom would be faculty and one other member from the civil service and academic professional staff with the recommendations to be ratified by the Academic Senate. This, taken with steps previously mentioned, further served to weaken the presidency.

And finally, growing out of the new Constitution were Senate approved policies and
procedures dealing with searches for major administrative positions. The 1997 Policies and Procedures Manual describes the role of the Academic Senate. It states that the chair of major administrative search committees would come from a panel of ten faculty members (the Panel of 10) elected annually by the Academic Senate. While direct reports to the President would be selected by the President, the Chair would come from the Panel of 10. While this has some utility for searches for a provost or other chief academic affairs officer, it is of limited use when one is looking for other senior administrators in areas where there typically is little faculty experience or competence.

Much more could have been accomplished during this period in an environment
more conducive to presidential leadership. Some presidents walk through these minefields more skillfully and successfully than others. But at Illinois State it is easy to see why some faltered and why those past presidents interviewed were frustrated with the strictures placed on them.
Even the 1995 North Central report concluded that Illinois State had become
overburdened with committees and that the new Board should take into account faculty, students and staff positions, but should also strive for greater ... accountability and efficiency ....

Shared Governance: What It Is and What It is Not
Although a university is a corporation, it is unlike a business and unique because of
two conditions that have long and honored roots in higher education--academic freedom and shared governance. There are two primary documents that most accept as standards in these arenas: The 1940 Statement on Academic Freedom and Tenure of the American Association of University Professors and the Joint 1966 Statement on Government of Colleges and Universities, which is the product of many different organizations. Except in extreme cases, these documents define two of the essential principles upon which modern American universities operate.
Some believe that it is not possible to have effective campus governance, or to have an effective president, if the sentiments of these two documents prevail. We disagree. The major problem on campuses that have had governance difficulties, and presidential failures, has not been with the actual concepts of academic freedom and shared governance. Rather, it is because many campus constituents (faculty, students, administrators, board members, alumni) do not understand
these principles and therefore become mired in conflict that is the product of other, locally developed governance designs that misinterpret or ignore the meanings of academic freedom and shared governance. Virtually all of these discordant governance designs were born out of the equalitarian movement of the 1960's and early 70's.

--The 1940 Statement on Academic Freedom and Tenure
The 1940 Statement was enacted after a series of joint conferences in the 1930s between representatives of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) and the Association of American Colleges (AAC). Subsequently, the 1940 Statement was endorsed by more than 100 professional organizations. Briefly, academic freedom means that faculty have freedom to pursue the truth as they see it in their teaching and research. It is a fundamental protection for teacher/scholars.

Faculty tenure sometimes is granted as a means of ensuring academic freedom and a sufficient degree of economic security to faculty such that they will be able to sustain their search for truth without inappropriate threats to their position and livelihood because of their views.
Academic freedom, per se, does not depend upon the existence of the institution of faculty tenure.

A gradually increasing number of institutions of higher education has adopted strong academic freedom policies (which have been given the support of law if formally adopted by a governing board and inserted into something similar to a faculty handbook) even while they do not grant tenure. Almost 20 percent of institutions of higher education have substituted some other arrangement such as term contracts for tenure. This is particularly true for faculty who hold appointments in professional schools. Some institutions grant guaranteed sabbatical leaves to continuing faculty who do not compete for tenure and others grant higher salaries to the same group. Our point here is not to endorse or criticize such arrangements, but rather to point out that academic freedom and tenure are not one and the same. One does not necessarily depend upon the other even though historically they have been tightly associated with each other in
American higher education.

In any case, when a faculty member is granted tenure, he/she may not be dismissed except for "adequate cause," or because of "extraordinary financial exigencies." It is customary to provide the faculty member with a one year notice in either of these circumstances. At most institutions, the dismissal of tenured faculty members is as rare as the proverbial hen's tooth, although meaningful "evaluation of tenured faculty" policies are being adopted by an ever larger
set of institutions.

It is not commonly understood that the 1940 Statement also details faculty responsibilities and places limitations upon a faculty member's academic freedom. For example, their academic freedom is subject to the adequate performance of their academic duties, and research for pecuniary return should be based upon an understanding with the authorities of the institution.
Further, the 1940 Statement adjures faculty to be careful not to introduce into their teaching controversial matter which has no relation to their subject. And, they must take care to remember that the public may judge their profession and their institution by their utterances.

Hence, they should at all times be accurate, should exercise appropriate restraint, should show respect for the opinions of others, and should make every effort to indicate that they are not speaking for the institution. Many faculty members forget these obligations and restraints and focus only on their right to profess the truth of their discipline as they see fit.

Thus, the notion that the institution of academic freedom gives faculty members license to say whatever they wish, wherever and whenever they wish, is false. The 1940 Statement is a declaration of faculty rights and responsibilities.
--The 1966 Joint Statement on Government of Colleges and Universities
The 1966 Joint Statement is in fact not "joint." It has been endorsed formally by the AAUP, but not by the American Council on Education (ACE) and the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB) that were involved in its development. Rather, both stated that they "recognized 'The Statement' as a significant step forward in the clarification of the respective jobs of governing boards, faculties, and administrations" and they "commend it institutions and governing boards." The 1966 Statement, in any case, is not intended to serve as
an exact blueprint for campus governance, and it is not the final authority when governance disputes occur. It is a good guide and reference.

The 1966 Statement clearly includes faculty in the governance process and
emphasizes their prime role and expertise in questions of academic standards and
curricula. Nonetheless, in several places, it states unequivocally that the faculty
"recommends" to the president, who then acts, or, in turn, "recommends" as necessary to the governing board. It speaks to the "initiating capacity and decision-making participation" of all institutional parties, and of differences in "weight" of each voice, depending upon the subject matter in question. For example, the weight of faculty advice in issues of academic standards and curricula should be much more influential than it is on issues that focus on financial matters.
The 1966 Statement also warns of the possible debilitating nature of unilateral action on the part of presidents and commends the importance of adopted policies as a means to standardize understanding, procedures, responsibility, and authority in shared governance.

The 1966 Statement states that the faculty's primary area of responsibility in shared governance is to determine the curriculum "after an educational goal has been established."

But, even here, it carefully notes that the final institutional authority is reserved to the institutional president and the governing board. Rarely, however, should a president substitute his/her judgment for that of the faculty and then only after extensive discussion and attempts to reconcile divergent views. Equally rarely should a governing board adopt an academic policy that has not been recommended by the faculty. Unless an emergency exists, or the president and faculty have been unresponsive, the governing board should ask the president and the faculty to reconsider the matter in question.

The 1966 Statement also recommends that faculty and, to a lesser degree, students be involved in long-range planning, decisions regarding existing or prospective physical resources, budgeting, the appointment of a president, and the appointment of chief academic officers. Note that the 1966 Statement says nothing about the evaluation of presidents or other institutional officers by the faculty.
The 1966 Statement also assumes that the faculty, along with the governing board, "delegates authority" to the president. However, since faculty are neither the originating source of legal authority on a campus, nor have they usually been granted legal authority, they cannot function in this regard. In the State of Illinois, as in most other states, it is the governing board that holds all authority and grants all authority. The only way a faculty can delegate authority to a president is if it has been given that authority by the governing board, or even by the president after he/she has been delegated authority by the governing board.

Faculty involvement in setting academic standards and determining curricula means
that faculty should play the major role in determining requirements for degrees and in determining when those requirements have been met. Similarly, faculty should have the dominant voice in determining the curricula, methods of instruction, modes and evaluation of research, faculty status itself, and those aspects of student life that relate to the academic process. Even so, note the strong language of the 1966 Statement:

On these matters, the power of review or final decision lodged in the governing board or delegated by it to the president should be exercised adversely only in exceptional circumstances; and for reasons communicated to the faculty.
It is desirable that the faculty should, following such communication, have opportunity for further consideration and further transmittal of its views to the president or the board.

Hence, it is clear that faculty recommend policies to the president and to the governing board. In the 1966 Statement, as in the statutes of the State of Illinois, the board reigns supreme. It does not follow, of course, that the fact that this power has both a legal basis, and roots in widely recognized governance principles, necessarily means that it has been, or will be, used wisely. Authority and wisdom are not the same.

The 1966 Statement does not call for direct, formal contact between the faculty and the governing board. Rather, it calls for faculty (and student) recommendations to the campus president, who represents the campus and who may or may not endorse these positions to the board. It calls for the president to convey "faculty views, including dissenting views" to the board and asks the president to inform faculty and students of the board's positions and actions.
Further, while the 1966 Statement calls for communication between and among faculty, president, and the governing board, it does not ask for faculty or student membership of the board itself.

As a matter of fact, many governing boards (as well as some presidents and faculty) have misunderstood the 1966 Statement's call for faculty participation in decision-making as a plea for the close association between faculty members and governing boards. This misunderstanding has resulted in numerous instances of "advisory boards" and "communication devices" designed to "improve communication." Each, however, usually compromises the role and ability of the campus president, who can only stand by as faculty members and students pass him/her by and go directly to the board. Such advisory boards and communications committees are an almost fool proof recipe for an ineffectual president, weak leadership, governance arguments, and virtually no substantive change.
The point is not that faculty and students should never talk with members of a governing board; rather, they should do so through the campus president and with his/her endorsement.

Faculty and board members should meet at social affairs and other informal functions and their leaders should be invited by the president to periodically address the board. But to establish formal avenues that circumvent the president is to encourage the development of multiple campus voices, each of which purports to "speak for the University." Neither is there any basis in the 1966 Statement for faculty or student membership on a governing board, or for independent
faculty and student contact with the board that has not been routed through the president. As noted above, such appointments, particularly in public institutions, were the result of the democratization movements of the 60's and early 70's during which many boards, particularly in public institutions, gave to faculty and often students as rights what presidents had formerly been able to grant as privileges.

In sum, shared governance does not mean that faculty, students, the president, and the governing board are somehow "equal" in their expertise, vantage points, or authority. In fact, the principles of governance outlined in the 1966 Statement make it clear that faculty and students make recommendations to the campus president on all matters, even while it acknowledged the salient role and primary expertise of faculty in matters relating to academic standards and curricula. In turn, the campus president is charged with representing all points of view on the campus, not just his/her own, when he/she carries policy recommendations to the governing board. There is no basis in the 1966 Statement for direct, continuous faculty and student contact with the governing board except as it is routed through, and regulated by, the president. Few principles with our academic
traditions have been more misunderstood, and more misapplied, than these.
Illinois State University's Circumstances: The Authority of the Board and the Academic Senate Bearing in mind the above, the structure at Illinois State is unique.

As we noted in an earlier section, following no confidence votes in a former President and a former Provost, the two-year-old Board of Trustees, which is legally responsible for the operation and governance of the University, began discussions over the adoption of new governance documents. These discussions came to a head in February 1998 when the Board adopted a new Constitution that contained some provisions that had not been approved by the Academic Senate and other provisions that the Academic Senate had never been afforded the
opportunity to discuss. Perhaps the most important of these were clauses that assert that: (1) Board-adopted governance documents take precedence over the campus Constitution; and, (2) the Board reserves to itself the right to approve and amend the Constitution.

The Board of Trustees' actions infuriated some faculty and were (and still are)
regarded as a violation of good faith by a majority of the faculty of the University. While it appears that a clear majority of the faculty recognize the authority of the Board of Trustees to operate and govern Illinois State University, that same majority continues to feel that the Boards actions have been insensitive, clumsy, and unnecessarily combative. Many faculty members do not believe that the Board has handled the Constitutional crisis well, and that too often the Board has exhibited disdain for faculty and their work.

In turn, most, if not all, members of the Board of Trustees are cognizant of the
University's recent history and the tradition that has developed of actual or threatened votes of  "no confidence" in senior administrators. Whether or not these votes and threats were merited, a consensus exists on the Board that this has resulted in a series of ineffectual, even intimidated presidents, and a certain degree of anarchy. The Board does not agree with the contention of some faculty that it does not have the power to change or amend the University's Constitution, or to adopt an entirely new one. It is not impressed when some faculty declare
its actions "illegal" or "lacking authority." In general, the same can be said of the reaction of most public, legislative, and media figures to these particular claims.
Accordingly, the Board's stance is that it intends to clear up, once and for all, the
governance ambiguities that have plagued Illinois State since 1969. It has asserted its statutory authority and has underlined the principle that the Academic Senate makes recommendations to the President. It does not agree that the adoption of the 1969 Constitution somehow eliminated, for all time, its authority to amend campus governance documents without the approval of the Academic Senate. And, it asserts that its documents and authority take precedence over any internal campus governance documents, including the 1969 Constitution. We can find no legal support for the position of some faculty that the Board of Trustees does not possess the authority that it has been exercising. State statutes give the
Board the absolute authority to operate and govern Illinois State University, with or without an Academic Senate, and with or without a Constitution. The Board may amend that Constitution as it sees fit and it may adopt a new Constitution as it sees fit. Indeed, in many institutions, the board is not even involved in campus governance; that decision is left to an accountable president.

While we do not argue that disgruntled faculty members and Academic Senate members must approve of the Board's exercise of its authority, we believe that they must acknowledge that authority and move on. The Board could also decide to place the issue in front of the new President and let him or her resolve the issue so long as it is within the framework provided by the Board of Trustees Governing Documents.

The relevant question is, where do we go from here? We have several recommendations.
* The Academic Senate must acknowledge the authority of the Board of Trustees.
* The Academic Senate must acknowledge that in all matters it makes
recommendations to the President of the University, who in turn makes
recommendations to the Board of Trustees.
* The Board should assure the campus that it does not intend again to amend
critical governance documents such as the Constitution without giving the
campus the opportunity for timely comment. The Board should insure that
the President provides the opportunity for campus governance to respond to
any substantive policies that the Board is considering.
* The President should entertain proposed amendments to the current
Constitution. This invitation will provide the Academic Senate with an
opportunity to influence the current Constitution even though it should
understand that neither the President nor the Board are obligated to approve
any proposed amendments.
* The President, in the remaining months of his service, should use his best
efforts to represent the campus to the Board, and the Board to the campus.
Even if the respective parties do not agree with each other, they should
understand each other and should be in communication. However, formal
communication should be via the President.

* The Board should indicate to faculty that it does not intend to exercise its
statutory power to take actions such as deciding which textbooks will be used
in academic courses. A range of similar items exists where, by statute, the
Board has powers that it would not be wise for it to exercise. It should say so
in terms that cannot be misunderstood. While the notion that the Board is
going to specify the textbooks that faculty member use would appear to be a
canard, it is legally possible and hence the Board should put this possibility
to rest (along with anything else that is similar).

We again emphasize that the Board begin to resolve the above issues before the new President assumes his/her position. In addition, we strongly recommend that the Board initiate a process that will address these issues but none should be approved without discussion with the new President. We recognize that some of the issues will be difficult; however, we firmly believe that as has been the case elsewhere, their resolution will, over time, establish the necessary conditions for effective shared governance, an effective President, eventual harmony, and a more proactive University. The current model has not worked well and must be

The New Governance System 1998 -
The Board of Trustees, established on January 1, 1996, quickly set out to establish its role in governance and that of the President and internal bodies. In 16 months it created the Board of Trustees of Illinois State University Governing Document which replaced the old Regents governing document. Also, in February 1998, a new Constitution for Illinois State University was promulgated by the Board. This document was then revised and made effective July 28, 1998. These documents would supersede Board of Regents policies and the 1969 Constitution.
Many were surprised at the suddenness of this change and the President expressed preference for a few more months to allow for the Board and Academic Senate to reach consensus.

The March 1998 edition of the Illinois State University Report announced the Presidents formation of a Select Committee on Governance to define the needs and roles of all University groups under the new Constitution. This came after the Academic Senate appointment of an adhoc group charged with basically the same duties. A Select Committee, to be comprised of representation from Academic Senate members, deans, chairpersons, faculty members, staff and
student groups, was asked to create a white paper on governance to be completed late in 1998 or early 1999. The President also announced that written protocols would be developed for consideration of any senate, administration issue. These protocols would prescribe a process for the Senate and the President to resolve any differences.

Reactions to the Boards decisions have been mixed. Many see the new Constitution as more reflective of how institutions of higher education across the country operate. Others see the changes as the death of shared governance. As stated by one interviewee, I dont like the manner in which these changes occurred, but it had to be done. A good system requires a strong University and Board.
Reacting to the Board decision, the faculty at a general meeting on March 17, adopted a Constitution of its own: a reiteration of the 1969 version.
Thus, the situation at this time is: 1) a new Board with a new Governance Document and Constitution; 2) the re-adoption of the 1969 Constitution by the Academic Senate; and 3) Presidential and Senate initiatives to develop new procedures for the President, campus constituencies, and the Board to work under.

While one can question the Boards abruptness in handling this matter, there is little in the new document to suggest there will be an abuse of power. Rather, shared governance can be alive and well, but only through a set of rules under which most institutions of higher education already operate. We now turn to the new governance documents.

The Board of Trustees of Illinois State University Governing Document.
The Governance Document took effect May 1997; it makes clear the responsibilities and authority of various members of the University community and describes the boar as the final institutional authority whose authority prevails over all internal documents and policies. This is also consistent with state law.
The powers and duty section enumerates the Boards statutory authority to carry out its responsibilities including the adoption of policies, rules, regulations and by-laws and through the employment of a president. It further acknowledges that it will refrain from participating in the day to day management decisions and actions of the University, delegating that responsibility to the President.
Further, under its powers and duties it states that except in limited instances and except when specifically provided for in University documents approved by the Board, the Board of Trustees will not serve as an appellate body for decisions made by the President or University administration.

The Governance Document also prescribes the delegation of authority to the President and sets out its position on shared governance. Section b. outlines that position. The Board recognizes that the faculty has primary responsibility in matters of student recruitment and retention, academic standards, the fundamental areas of curriculum and the necessary policies and procedures for its conduct, subject matter and methods of instruction, instructional materials, methods of research, and general requirements for degrees. It then acknowledges the role of faculty in a number of key areas, granting to the Academic Senate the responsibility of the primary body for consultation regarding the establishment of academic guidelines and academic procedures of the University.

The Governance Document also provides a means of allowing those who seriously
disagree with the President to have the right to explain their views before the Board through a spokesperson.

The Constitution
Adopted in February, 1998 and revised July, 1998, the Illinois State University
Constitution makes it clear that the Board is responsible for the governing of the University, but it may properly delegate authority with commensurate responsibility to the President of the University and to the Academic Senate.
The new Constitution makes the President responsible for a viable organizational structure . . ., and gives the President authority over all appointments of administrative officers involving the campus constituencies in that process. The new Constitution makes clear, however, that the President has both the authority and responsibility for these appointments.
The new Constitution also describes the role of the Academic Senate, listing virtually the same duties as the 1969 Constitution except that the word recommend is substituted for determine.

What Does All This Mean?
In short, the board Governance Document and new Constitution for the University
reasserts the role of both the Board and the President in the governance of this institution. They also offer a different version of shared governance for Illinois State - one clearly more comparable to the norm in higher education. While they are alien to this institutional culture, there is nothing in either which would be at odds with practices in most institutions of higher education. Rather, they attempt to correct a unique system of shared governance which over the past 50 years has
created an environment where the President was viewed as one of many leaders on campus. The 1951 and 1969 Constitutions provided for sharing of authority without commensurate accountability. Even these new documents fall short in this area. In view of the tensions over the years regarding relationships between the faculty and the administration, there is no reason to believe that these changes will make matters worse. In fact, if writers on higher education and if the experiences of members of this team have any validity, the revisions should improve the ability of all parties to work together for the advancement of Illinois State University.
The Board has tried to get beyond the controversy over these changes by involving the University community in key ways. It has included campus representatives on the Presidential search committee, established a Trustee-in-Residence Program, and given the campus community a chance to talk about issues during pre-Board meeting get-togethers (the Campus Communications Committee). The most important point is that the Board is firm in its resolve to make shared governance work under the terms it has approved, and we agree with that position. Those who know members of this Board seem to like them. As stated by one member of the campus community: I know three members of the Board very well. They are
great people, and we are lucky to have them. Over time, I think present differences can be worked out. Time and deliberate, constructive effort on everyones part can help Illinois State put these issues behind them.

Governance for the Future
As stated earlier, most leaders in higher education believe that shared governance is important that the proper balance in decision-making is important but that ultimately the board determines policy and the president, as the boards agent, is responsible for the final decisions made at the university level. As stated earlier, even the 1966 Joint Statement On Government of Colleges and Universities of the AAUP states clearly that the faculty is to recommend to the president who then in turn acts or in turn recommends to the governing board.
Recently, the Association of Governing Boards issued a Draft Statement on Institutional Governance which suggested how institutions might best respond to future challenges. That Draft cites some of the changes that are occurring in the landscape of higher education, three of which are applicable to the situation at Illinois State University:

1. Many governing boards, faculty members and chief executives believe that internal governance arrangements have become so cumbersome that timely decisions are difficult to make, and small minorities are often able to impede the decision-making process;

2. Alternatively, the governance process sometimes produces a lowest common
denominator decision, which does not adequately address underlying issues
The average length of service by institutional chief executives has declined, in part,
as a result of conflicting demands from constituents, the politicization of public-sector governing boards, and the frequency of budget crises.
The AGB Drafts first principle states what is obvious to most in higher education: that the ultimate responsibility for an institution rests in its governing board, a responsibility that cannot be delegated. At the same time, it says that the board should work toward a consensus or an understanding on the part of stakeholders and set forth a realistic view of the resources necessary to carry out the mission.
Further, the Report offers standards of good practice recommending that governing boards should state explicitly who has the authority for what kinds of decisions. Relevant to Illinois States situation are the following standards:

1. That the governing board has the sole responsibility to appoint and assess the
performance of the chief executive, although it might seek the input of others.

2. That the chief executive is the boards major window on the institution, and the board should expect both candor and sufficient information from the chief executive.

3. That the board should establish deadlines for the conclusion of various consultative and decision-making processes with a clear understanding that failure to act in accordance with these deadlines will mean that the next highest level in the governance process may choose to act. This is particularly important here at Illinois State. It is now in the hands of the campus to devise new working relationships that fit with the Governance Document and the new Constitution.
However, some are still clinging to the notion that the 1969 Constitution defines those relationships. The Board needs to reiterate that the 1969 Constitution has been superseded by Board action, and that it is essential the Select Committee on Governance completes its work.

Another 1996 AGB Commission concluded, After more than a year of inquiry, this
commission has come to one overriding conclusion: Universities and colleges need wiser governance and more effective leadership. That means campus presidents must be given the authority they need to lead their institutions and manage their resources. A strong presidency is not a panacea for the ever-increasing demands and challenges besetting the nations colleges and universities. But without a stronger presidency, these demands and challenges stand little hope of being met. This conclusion will arouse passionate resistance in some quarters as an
assault on the tradition of shared governance. This commission believes the tradition needs to be reshaped, not scrapped. Governance is not a zero-sum game. Strengthening presidential leadership does not mean undermining the role of governing boards or compromising the integrity of the faculty. On the contrary: If presidents are stronger, the institutions will be stronger and everyone stands to benefit

Clearly, the new Board of Trustees has, consistent with its legal authority, defined the parameters under which Illinois State University is to operate. Some of the requirements are different from past experience but none are antithetical to what is sound institutional practice across the country. It is our strong opinion that the constituencies of Illinois State University should now develop new ways of relating to the President and the new Board, consistent with these revisions. Nothing is to be served by prolonging the discussion of Board, President, and campus prerogatives under previous models of governance Rather, it is important
for Illinois State to move forward to get this issue behind it so that it may deal with the substantive issues it will be facing in the future. The Presidents effort to prepare protocols defining the relationship between the president and the Academic Senate is important. Of greater importance, is the Select Committees development of the definition of the needs and roles of governance groups under the Board of Trustees definition of shared governance. This is something that the campus community must grapple with and resolve quickly, and the Board must
press the President in this regard.
While these are adequate governance documents, as pointed out above we also believe they contain a number of flaws. However, we dont advocate more changes until internal governance matters are settled. Improvements can be made in an orderly way over the years, but now is not the time.
In the last analysis, what is needed is a strong Board that supports its President, a
system of internal governance which encourages consultation over matters of substance, and an able President to provide leadership).

What Should the Board Do?
1. Hold firm in its support of the new documents it has created.
2. Commit to making the new system work by following the tenets outlined in these documents, namely:
a. Carrying out its powers and duties as stated,
b. Delegating to the President the authority provided in the documents,
c. Refraining from participating in the day to day management and decision making of the campus, and
d. Recognizing the role of faculty and other constituencies in shared governance, particularly, through its actions, recognizing the primary academic responsibilities that the faculty must have.
3. Make good faith efforts to ameliorate concerns about the loss of shared governance through constructive responses to the involvement of campus constituencies in such activities as the presidential search, the Campus Communications Committee, and by working out protocols, consistent with the Boards intent, that define and implement these new relationships.

Post Script on Governance
We have spent considerable time in this report on governance issues because they are important, but we also believe they should be kept in proper perspective. While there have been contentious issues over the years and there have been no-confidence votes, for the most part the campus community has gone about its business effectively. As one faculty member stated, these governance issues are not day to day topics for us. We have too much else to do. A community
representative said something similar: They may have internal problems -- and Id rather not read about them but I am pleased with Illinois States role in the community and with the educational services it is delivering. I know little about their internal problems, and, frankly, I dont care. Another faculty member expressed it this way: It would be wrong for the authors of this report to conclude that we are a dysfunctional place. We may have our differences, but we are doing our job.
There is also a tendency in such conflicts to cast the participants in good and bad molds.
But there are no bad people here; there are only dedicated, able people trying to do a job. That there is disagreement on how this job is to be done shouldnt diminish the commitment that so many have made to serving this University in their capacities as board members, faculty, staff, and students.
Illinois State is a good university, but it should be so much more. The Review team, all Illinois State University stakeholders, believe that Illinois State should already be a Public Ivy.
It is not. And whatever, it should be more distinguished. There has been neither vision nor leadership, both of which have been virtually impossible under past conditions. The rules should change.
This is the time for good people to move on. The Board has spoken on the matter of governance and it has both the Constitutional right and responsibility to do so; it should do so again. Over the years, trust can build in the new system and progress can be made.


Faculty, in particular, want a President who is as inclusive as he/she is inspiring, who will collaboratively develop and implement sound and sensitive governance and management foundations, forge a more certain sense of direction for the University, and establish effective


1. At this time, the primary current task before the Board of Trustees and the University community is to reach understanding on governance matters and to do so in a manner that involves respectful discussion, and does not presume to diminish or surrender the Boards statutory authority. Ultimately, only the Board (and in some cases the President) are responsible for the institution. The Board should not give away its authority to individuals (including faculty) who have no legal accountability for their actions. To do so would violate the fiduciary responsibilities that all members of the Board of Trustees are required by law to fulfill.

2. It is absolutely essential that the Board and the campus reach broad understanding on governance before the next President reaches the campus. Failure to do so will scar the first months of the next Presidents service and will dramatically increase the probability that he/she will be a failure. Illinois State cannot afford another presidential failure. What the institution needs now is a President who serves the University for a decade. It will be difficult to attract such an individual if what one observer has labeled the bleeding sores of University governance debilitate the Universitys ability to attract and retain quality leadership. If necessary, the Board and the Senate must take the heat
understanding the ultimate authority is the Board.

3. The Board should immediately consider the recommendations in the Governance
Chapter (Chapter XI).

16. The faculty is graying and in several colleges older faculty are beginning to
predominate. The University should pay attention to the graying phenomenon by: (1) enveloping a targeted program of retraining and refocusing senior faculty members so that they can become productive and meet student and institutional needs better; and,
(2) developing a set of incentives that will encourage early retirement of selected faculty. Illinois State should not sit still and watch its faculty gray or become irrelevant. Since Illinois State is hardly the first institution of higher education to face these challenges, it should look to the experience of other institutions and adopt their best practices.

17. With joint faculty and administrative participation, the institution should develop a truly meaningful evaluation of tenured faculty policy that utilizes peer evaluations to identify those faculty whose level of productivity has fallen below expected levels. The policy should stress peer evaluation, provide warnings, focus upon faculty improvement, and require improvement plans that are approved by colleagues and the appropriate college dean. However, the policy must also contain the teeth necessary to terminate an individual from the faculty after several years if that faculty member does not improve.

18. The salary structure appears to be diminishing the role of merit salary increments. We cannot think of any institution that Illinois State should emulate that does not place a strong emphasis upon merit salary increments and does not eschew significant across the board increments. Put simply, if the University stands for excellence in all that it undertakes, then its salary system should reflect this commitment, and rewards and incentives should go to those faculty members who exhibit the most excellence and those who are the most productive.
Of particular concern is the proposed new ASPT document (the draft dated 9
September 1998) which, besides being excessively bureaucratic and full of time-consuming process, would institutionalize two adverse developments. First, it would make it possible for individual departments to move essentially to an across the board system of allocating salary increment dollars. Second, in the new system, department chairs and deans would have little means to counteract across the boardism (as one faculty member described it) and, indeed, neither chairs nor the college deans would have independent voices in salary, promotion, and tenure decisions. This is a recipe for a slow descent toward lower standards and mediocrity and we urge the faculty and the new President to modify and, if
necessary, reject any such proposals, after providing all parties with appropriate
opportunities to state their views. Then, the campus should be inspired to move in more productive directions.

19. Faculty salaries must be increased if the University is to become a Public Ivy.
Illinois States faculty salary structure is sufficient if the institution wishes to compete with directional university that probably began its life as a single
purpose teachers college. If, however, Illinois State aspires to more than this, then its faculty salaries are inadequate to attract and retrain the truly superior faculty that it will need.

25. Compensation of the New President:
Given its history of devouring presidents, Illinois State University must offer attractive conditions to presidential candidates if it wishes to attract and retain exceptional finalists. Nationally, many prospective candidates are not aware of the University's governance debacles. They will find out, however, if they become semifinalists. At that point, the Board must overcome the trepidations of finalists by demonstrating that it has changed the governance system for the better, and that it will in fact support the President and not cast him/her aside unless there is abundant reason to do so.

26. Nonetheless, improving the campus climate and settling governance issues will not by itself be sufficient. Illinois State must improve the compensation package that it places in front of prospective new presidents or the best candidates will disappear at the end of the search. The truth is that the current compensation that Illinois State offers is not competitive, especially if the University wishes to attract a sitting, already successful president of a well-regarded institution, or the provost or dean of a Big Ten level institution. If the Board of Trustees is not thinking in terms of attracting such individuals as candidates, it should be. The President's salary is approximately $165,000. The new President's salary might well include Foundation supplements authorized and controlled by the Board and/or deferred compensation authorized and controlled by the Board. The total value of the package (not including fringe benefits) should be about $250,000. The Board should not be taken in by the presidential compensation surveys published in the
Chronicle of Higher Education or distributed by the National Association of College
Business Officers (NACUBO). These surveys are seldom complete and nearly always do not include deferred compensation. They often do not include foundation supplements and other elements of compensation. In other words, these surveys disguise more than they reveal and sitting presidents smile when they talk about such surveys.

No doubt some individuals and some Board members might worry that a truly
competitive presidential salary will not be tolerated by the Governor, legislators, and faculty. Our interviews suggest otherwise. There is a broad understanding that Illinois State must do more than it has previously in compensating its President. One highly placed individual advised us simply to tell the Board to "go for it."

34. All University publications including newsletters should be cleared through University Communications for quality control and consistency of information.

35. All alumni newsletters should also be coordinated with/by the Alumni Office.

36. The Graphic Identity Program should be overhauled, with a clear new logo identified. This logo should appear prominently on all University publications and other printed matter. It must be used repeatedly, exclusively, uniformly, prominently, and without competition from other logos.

37. Guidelines governing use of the University Website should be established and enforced to protect and enhance the institution's image and reputation. It is a major communication vehicle and should be recognized as such.

University of Louisiana Monroe, James L. Fisher Ltd Report 2002