Browse Items (121 total)

Article in The Guardian, 14 November 2012, by U.Va. history professor Robert Geraci showing previously unreported clues to a possible cause or catalyst for the removal of President Teresa Sullivan in June 2012: the U.Va. administration's blocking of a Dept. of Environmental Sciences' attempt less than two months earlier to re-hire prominent climate researcher (and "Climategate" target) Michael Mann for the new Kington Professorship in Environmental Change

Contributed by Robert Geraci

On the July 8 Wake-Up Call on WNRN-FM, host Rick Moore is joined by show producer Sean McCord to discuss local issues in the news, including the ouster and reinstatement of UVA President Sullivan, and the long heat wave.

Contributed by Sean McCord

Signatures on Sullivan Support Banner from June 24, Rally for Honor

Contributed by Dave Merrill and Nicole Krakora

Part 5: FOIA Emails to University of Virginia Board of Visitors Published by as Portable File Documents, September 12, 2012. From article:

Contributed by Michael

Part 4: FOIA Emails to University of Virginia Board of Visitors Published by as Portable File Documents, September 12, 2012. From article:

Contributed by Michael

Part 3: FOIA Emails to University of Virginia Board of Visitors Published by as Portable File Documents, September 12, 2012. From article:

Contributed by Michael

Part 2: FOIA Emails to University of Virginia Board of Visitors Published by as Portable File Documents, September 12, 2012. From article:

Contributed by Michael

Part 1: FOIA Emails to University of Virginia Board of Visitors Published by as Portable File Documents, September 12, 2012. From article:

Contributed by Michael

The photos are unedited and were taken in chronological order starting about 30 mins before the speeches from the steps. The first pictures are of people joining from Rugby Road, and the rest are just random shots of things that looked interesting. Although there were some people in fancy garb, there were two women in togas, I believe that the guy in the picture with the orange baseball cap came as he was normally dressed on a Sunday, in a cassock. It certainly was a very interesting gathering. I particularly liked the Transparency Band

Demonstration in support of President Sullivan
Monday, June 18, 2012

Contributed by Sarah Betzer

Attached are four photos, taken with my smartphone, on Tuesday, June 26, 2012.

The first two ("Walking over") of the Rector and President Sullivan (and their entourage) walking from Carr's Hill up the path from the stoplight at Rugby Road were taken at 3:02pm.

The second set ("walking in") were taken at 3:03pm as the group headed toward the Board of Visitors' office door at the northwest corner of the Rotunda.

I created these two Virginia V logos on June 19 and released them on Facebook.

The blue and orange version was then used by others on signs and stickers. It was also used by many supporters as a profile picture on Facebook.

The black and purple image was inspired by the umbrella that followed Dr. Sullivan as she walked through the crowd of supporters on the Lawn.

My husband graduated from UVa with a PhD in English literature in 2007. We still reside in Charlottesville.

Subject: Message from Bill Wulf

UVa faculty & others,

Just in case you missed it, I am one of the folks that publicly resigned over the forced resignation of President Sullivan. I resigned because I deeply care about the University, I thought President Sullivan was doing a great job, and thus felt deeply that this action, and the way it was taken, was profoundly damaging to the University.

I was frankly surprised by the magnitude of the positive faculty and media reaction to my resignation – I don’t think of myself as the “marching in the street, and placard waving” type. So, after the initial flurry of email, except for bland replies to some, I have kept pretty quiet about the whole fiasco. But now I feel I need to voice a perspective on the solution to the underlying problem.

I have been asked by President Sullivan, my Dean, and even my departmental faculty, to “un-resign” – I have said NO, and the rest of this note is to explain to all of you why, and perhaps what it means to you. It is not because I don’t love UVa, and would love to rejoin its faculty – quite the opposite, it’s precisely because I do love and respect it so much!

Like most of you, I was delighted by the re-instatement of Terry Sullivan – but that, I my view, didn’t fix the underlying problem! As my original message noted, my wife and I have extensive experience in both executive positions and board positions in industry, academia, and government – we’ve seen the executive-to-board relationship from both sides, and in multiple contexts – and my judgment is that the current BOV is incompetent to govern UVa! Let me repeat – it’s incompetent for the task of governing UVa! I am more than willing to stipulate that the BOV members are smart, good and accomplished people – but to be competent on a board requires a significant understanding of the institution they are governing. That’s what is lacking!

The present BOV appointed by the Governor is 14 lawyers or corporate executives with no experience with academic governance, one part-time medic at John-Hopkins, and one CEO of a small university. Alas, they don’t even seem to know much about UVa! While fond of selectively quoting Jefferson out of context, they overlook the deeply philosophical fact that Mr. Jefferson’s design for UVa had *no*President or central administration – the faculty governed the University, and did so in an open collaborative way, not in secret meetings behind closed doors, with no faculty input. Total faculty control wouldn’t work for today’s larger university, BUT … the BOV’s instincts were that top-down, command and control management was “right” and so tried to impose it. Well, it’s not right for universities, especially for UVa – and in fact, the data says that it is not right for most corporations either! It certainly wasn’t right for the corporations that I ran! But my main point is that faculty involvement in university governance is central to all universities, and especially to UVa.

Moreover, the current BOV clearly didn’t even investigate the issue they expressed concern about – for example on-line presence of the University (seemingly a big deal in TS’s firing), but they apparently just reacted to the hype of recent announcements by some other universities without investigating UVa’s record on the subject. Well, our involvement in digital scholarship and learning goes back at least twenty years – I know because I was a principal in getting it started! Please note in the prior sentence I said scholarship AND education. Great universities are about both – not just mass teaching! And a future great UVa must be about both! The current BOV, or at least those involved in firing Terry Sullivan, pretty clearly doesn’t understand that.

Are these uninformed folks likely to make smart future decisions for UVa? Alas, I think not! Smart and accomplished as they may be individually in other contexts, they just don’t have the knowledge base to make good decisions for UVa.

Just imagine a board imposed upon General Motors that consisted of 14 smart/accomplished academics, but with no industrial experience, one Chevy customer, and the CEO of a mom-and-pop grocery store. Would that work? No, of course not! And the converse isn’t working here either! What we need is a significant fraction of the BOV to be folks that deeply understand academia, and UVa in particular – I have been astounded by how shallow and un-informed the comments by rector Dragas, for example.

I have a substantial list of distinguished current or former academic administrators that I know first hand, that are really bright and I would be happy to recommend them to serve on the BOV, and I’d even to be the first contact with them – but I haven’t been asked. Alas, they almost certainly didn’t make major contribution to the Governor’s campaign, so the chance of their selection under the current system are probably nil. BUT, it’s the system needs to be changed!

I am a more-than-a-tad concerned that the reinstatement of President Sullivan has taken a bit of wind out of the sails of faculty/student pressure for reform. In my view the time is not to compromise, but to stand for the principles of the University, and particularly the principle of faculty deeply involved its governance!! Corporate style boards (of which both my wife and I have deep experience) are NOT the model for the BOV –nor is “damn the torpedoes” top-down executive management – and the fact that the current BOV doesn’t understand that is damning and destructive, and says a lot about the selection criteria that chose them! We MUST fix the selection criteria!

Permit me to cycle back to my opening – I am not a “march and wave placards” type – partly because I find it intellectually repugnant, but also in no small measure because I don’t think it’s especially effective in our context. You may disagree. What I do think we need is a moderate, well-reasoned argument for why the structure of the BOV needs to be changed for the benefit of the University – and the state. But please note that I think the argument needs to be delivered to the folks that can effect that change and that the present process is a political one, and while I am not in favor of marching and placard waving, I also think our actions need to include political ones – just what those actions are should be needs to be a collective decision of the faculty, so I’ll stay silent on that for now.

But we DO need to act to fix the problem underlying President Sullivan’s firing! Will she stay long term, or would we be able to recruit a comparable replacement given the current BOV and the criteria for future BOV selections? In my view -- NO! Unless there is fundamental change, UVa is on a downward spiral. It hurts me to the core! UVa has been SO special! To see it self-destruct is as painful as I can imagine.

Bill Wulf

Wm. A. Wulf
University Professor, Dept. of Computer Science University of Virginia, and
President Emeritus, National Academy of Engineering


Contributed by John Alexander

A 3-part series probing the Sullivan ouster in the context of campaign finance, energy industry politics and Ken Cuccinelli's war on climate science. A summary also appears here

Contributed by Maureen Tkacik

Professor and Chairman of the Media Studies Department Siva Vaidhyanathan, expresses his frustration with the Board of Visitors, his full support for Teresa Sullivan, and what this means for the future of the University.

Contributed by WUVAonline

Video from speeches given by Stephen Nash, Chair of the Honor Committee, and Johnny Vroom, Student Council President at the June 24 Rally for Honor.

Contributed by WUVAonline

WUVAonline sat down with the President and CEO of the University of Virginia Alumni Association, Mr. Tom Faulders (CLAS 1971). He discusses the role that the Alumni Association has played since the announcement of Teresa Sullivan’s sudden resignation, as well as the general response the Association has received from our dedicated alumni.

Contributed by WUVAonline

Video and photos from the Rally for Transparency.

Contributed by WUVAonline

WUVAonline Reporter Katherine Faulders gives an overview of today’s events. Interviews include Johnny Vroom of StudCo and Siva Vaidhyanathan, Robertson Professor of Media Studies.

Contributed by WUVAonline

The University of Virginia’s Board of Visitors voted unanimously to reinstate President Sullivan, in a 33 minute meeting on Tuesday.

Contributed by WUVAonline

Multiple photos from the crowd and speakers at President Sullivan's reinstatement.

Contributed by WUVAonline

Blog post with aerial photographs of the June 24, 2012 Rally for Honor on the UVA Lawn.

Contributed by Kelly Johnston

West Lawn Colonnade walkway at the first Sullivan Rally during the BOV meeting

Contributed by Lynn Rush

Contributed by Edward Gaynor

This composite image of the Rotunda burning was put together by my coworker (and fellow UVA alum) Eric Newsome. We both work in the Dept. of Materials Science and Engineering. Eric's creation made its way all over the engineering school and beyond.

Contributed by Susan Bagby

Contributed by Edward Gaynor

Faculty, Students, University Community gathering in support of President Teresa Sullivan while the Board of Visitors meets inside the Rotunda.

Contributed by Kirsten Sparenborg

Gathering in support of President Teresa Sullivan while the Board of Visitors meets inside the Rotunda.

Contributed by Kirsten Sparenborg

A collection of satirical essays and a youtube video about the debacle involving the forced resignation of Pres. Sullivan. Some I wrote, and some I did not.

Contributed by Charlie Schmehl

Painted on Beta Bridge, Rugby Rd.

Contributed by Bud Woodward

Children of alumni Maura Brooks (COMM '97) asleep in their stroller after rallying for Honor on Sunday, June 24th.

Contributed by Maura Brooks

Director's statement posted on the Institute for Environmental Negotiation's website ( on June 19th.

Contributed by Melissa Keywood

UCARE's Director Frank Dukes, Director at the Institute for Environmental Negotiation Issued the following Statement on the UCARE Website.

UCARE is dedicated to helping the University of Virginia and the Charlottesville communities work together to understand the University’s role in slavery, racial segregation, and discrimination and to find ways to address and repair the legacy of those harms, particularly as they relate to present day disparities.

Contributed by Ucare Staff

Sentiment analysis of Tweets regarding the Board of Visitors decision on the removal of UVa's President Sullivan (June 2012).

Note: Sullivan has been reinstated as of 6/27. This video was produced purely for analysis and entertainment (if you could call it that).

Contributed by asidrinkcoffee

Created and carried by Lisa Laurie, NP, MSN, UVa 2008. Used "ransom style" lettering , to imply duplicitous removal of President Sullivan. Center photo is Thomas Jefferson, with the words "dignity and grace" as a reminder of his principles.

Contributed by Lisa Laurie

Hook photo of Jefferson sign in action at the rally

Contributed by Tim Freilich

Steve Keene painting used to convey messages during the rallies to reinstate President Sulivan

Contributed by Tim Freilich

Steve Keene painting of Jefferson used to convey messages at the rallies to reinstatement President Sullivan.

Contributed by Tim Freilich

Steve Keene painting used to convey messages during rallies for President Sullivan's reinstatement.

Contributed by Tim Freilich

Steve Keene painting of Jefferson used to convey different messages at the rallies demanding the reinstatement of President Sullivan.

Contributed by Tim Freilich

Signs for the Rally 4 Honor to reinstate President Sullivan.

Contributed by Jason Lunday

Two students from Johnson Elementary at the Lawn Rally on June 18, 2012

Contributed by Lynda Harrill

blog post

Contributed by dave mazella

Two UVA alumnae film a short video with "fan mail" for the BOV. Represents some of the comedic side of the past 3 weeks

Contributed by Denny

Button worn by April Cain (College of Arts and Sciences '79) to rally on The Lawn on June 18, 2012

Contributed by April Cain, Class of '79

Blog post

Contributed by Jacquelyn Kittredge

Rally Photo

Contributed by Adela Su

Strategic Transparency

Contributed by Adela Su

Washington D.C. live reports from Charlottesville on the reinstatement of Teresa Sullivan.

Interviews from student Brendan Wynn, nursing faculty Debbie Gleason, and others.

Contributed by Sullivan Reinstated!

A student's letter to the editor of the Richmond Times-Dispatch

Editor, Times-Dispatch:

Regarding the ouster of U.Va. President Teresa Sullivan: The irresponsible actions by U.Va.'s Board of Visitors has led to an uproar on the campus and around the country. It has left a sour taste in the mouths of many from higher education administration, including "dismayed" former U.Va. president Robert O'Neil and president of the Association of American Universities Hunter Rawlings III. Most recently, Darden School of Business was dealt a blow after the resignation of the chairman of its Board of Trustees, amid discoveries of his involvement in the opaque and messy removal process. What's more, faculty at all levels are outraged and took a vote of no confidence in Rector Helen Dragas and the board.

In light of this troubling deluge of negative press, Gov. Bob McDonnell must under no circumstances consider the reappointment of Dragas or any other member of the Board of Visitors. This ordeal has been a major embarrassment, and still no explanation of why it was done.

If anyone thinks this is the way to make this institution the most eminent in the United States, they need to think again.

Brendan Wynn.


Contributed by Sullivan Reinstated!

Make no mistake: President Teresa Sullivan had an overarching vision for the University of Virginia, and anyone in the U-Va. community who had been paying attention knew it — including the university’s Board of Visitors. Unfortunately for Ms. Sullivan, it just wasn’t the vision of the board.

Come August, the board will remove a well-regarded president who fought to keep the school financially accessible to low-income students and for investment in all areas of study — not just science, technology, engineering and mathematics — and living wages for the university’s lowest-paid staff. Most important, the board will silence a president who dared to question its authority in making decisions on these issues.

How could the university community not be outraged by the closed-door politics of a tight-lipped Board of Visitors? Terry Sullivan will be sorely missed.

Brendan Wynn, Charlottesville

The writer is a student at the University of Virginia.

Contributed by Thomas Jefferson

Letters published in the Washington Post from former president Robert O'Neil and student Brendan Wynn in defense of Teresa Sullivan's record at the University of Virginia.

Contributed by Brendan Wynn

Contributed by Rev. Deborah Lewis

Contributed by Rev. Deborah Lewis

As observed (photo taken) on Thursday, June 28, 2012:
Painted on Beta Bridge (west-side). "sUlliVAn YOU ARE NOT ALONE NA=RESOLUTE HONOR"

Contributed by Sherry Lake

June 24, 2012: Librarians Rebecca Cooper and Warner Granade rallying for honor on the Lawn.

Contributed by Mary Johnston

June 24, 2012: Librarians gather to support the aerial photography project during the Rally for Honor. "Existential threats don't scare us. We're Librarians." - Bethany Nowviskie, Chris Gist, Mary Johnston, Alex Gil and son, Meridith Wolnick and daughter, Debra Guy, Warner Granade, Kelly Johnston.

Contributed by Mary Johnston

June 24, 2012: Sending up the weather balloon for some aerial photography over the Rally for Honor on the Lawn - Chris Gist, Kelly Johnston.

Contributed by Mary Johnston

June 24, 2012: Walking from Alderman Library to the Lawn with a weather balloon - Kelly Johnston, Chris Gist. The weather balloon will be used to take aerial photography during the Rally for Honor.

Contributed by Mary Johnston

Jane Miller (CLAS '07) and Cari Hennessy (CLAS '06) with a sign supporting President Sullivan at the vigil on June 26, 2012.

Contributed by Cari

Photo taken on the Lawn at the vigil supporting President Sullivan on June 26, 2012.

Contributed by Cari

Contributed by Gregory Hays

June 18 Rally at the Rotunda, Mrs Sarah King (CLAS '98) with children Taylor & Kathryn King

Contributed by Sarah King

June 18 Rally at the Rotunda, Son of Alumni, Dr Kevin and Mrs Sarah King (Both CLAS '98)

Contributed by Sarah

The scene at the Rotunda after the reinstatement of UVa President Teresa Sullivan, 26 June 2012 (CC-BY)

Contributed by Bethany Nowviskie

Collage of signs from the Rally for a Transparent UVa on 6.18.12

Contributed by Claire Mitchell

Contributed by Claire

Picture of stakes with images from students, alumni, and community members abroad who wanted to show their support but could not be in attendance

Contributed by Claire

As an alumnus and an attorney versed in the governance of non-profit organizations, I conclude the board acted unethically---and (arguably) under color of law---in orchestrating the removal of President Sullivan.

The removal of a president is an action requiring the utmost care and consideration. In causing the resignation of the president without having met to discuss the matter you failed to meet your fiduciary duties to the university. Each Visitor has a legal duty to seek all relevant facts, ask questions, and independently decide on the correct course of action. A visitor's fiduciary duties and ethical obligations are near-sacrosanct, cannot be delegated, and cannot be waived.

Federal law governing tax-exempt organizations requires visitors to advance the university's "exempt" purpose: the advancement of knowledge, education of students, and treatment of patients. A visitor can not simultaneously advance the university's exempt purpose and serve the interests of a private individual or entity.

Your goals in removing President Sullivan, as stated by Rector Dragas and others, included:
• securing the financial health of the university,
• reversing disappointing fundraising,
• attracting star professors,
• retaining the best faculty, and
• enhancing the university's reputation and position.

Your actions have resulted in the following:
• Two of the university's most dedicated and generous benefactors (Hunter Smith and the Battens) have stated that they will not support the university
• Innumerable alumni, parents, and community members have decided not to give to the university
• At least two "star" faculty recruits have decided not to accept positions at the university
• One "star" professor has resigned; I have heard that another ten are seriously considering resigning or retiring early.
• Irreparable damage to the university within and without the academy:
o Former Cornell University president who currently serves as the president of the Association of American Universities, blasted your actions as "the most egregious case I have ever seen of mismanagement by a governing board."
o Editorials and opinion pieces have uniformly condemned your performance
• The university's rankings/ratings will decline markedly
o US News and World Report rankings of the Best Colleges and Universities, whose outsize influence on student recruitment and fund raising is well documented, uses as one of its metrics the opinion of other university presidents. Given not only what you did, but how you did it, we can expect very poor reviews.
• Great instability in the various academic departments and throughout the university
• Morale so low it is more accurately described as despair

The departures of faculty, loss of reputation, alienation of donors and alumni, and marked fall in ratings are the direct result of your actions.

I am forced to conclude that in your:
• advancement of the university's mission, you have done far more harm than good;
• treatment of President Sullivan, you were unethical;
• communications with faculty, staff, students, and alumni, you acted without honor;
• management of the forced resignation and its aftermath, you are incompetent; and
• custodianship of the university's assets and reputation, you have been negligent.

I call on those of you who orchestrated and supported the ouster of President Sullivan to resign.

With contempt,

T. Jude Silveira (Law '97)

Contributed by Jude Silveira

Sign protesting Sullivan ouster

Contributed by Jessica Barrett

Sign made for 6/26/12 demonstration on the lawn (Board of Visitors meeting to reinstate Sullivan), side B.

Contributed by Jessica Barrett

Sign for Board of Visitors meeting 6/26, side A

Contributed by Jessica Barrett

Contributed by Anna McGrady

A protest placard held by several UVa librarians at the June 24th "Rally for Honor." Quote from an RBMS conference plenary talk by Bethany Nowviskie:

Contributed by Bethany Nowviskie

This is the best description of what is at stake for higher learning in the recent developments at the University. A professor of English at UVA, Lisa Spaar eloquently questions the value of on-line and off line learning as it relates to the humanities. This is a must read for all who want an in depth description of the choices we have facing our institutions of higher learning.

Contributed by Lisa Russ Spaar

Students support Jefferson's quote for seeking the truth

Contributed by Ellen Welch

1st Silent Protest against Rector Dragas and the BOV for ousting President Sullivan

Contributed by Ellen Welch

Huge turnout of UVA Community at 1st Silent Protest on the Lawn

Contributed by Ellen Welch

Supporters of President Sullivan at the 1st Silent Protest on the Lawn

Contributed by Ellen Welch

UVA Community begins to gather for 1st Silent Rally on the Lawn

Contributed by Ellen Welch

UVA Community at the 1st Silent Protest against the BOV firing President Sullivan

Contributed by Ellen Welch

UVA Community applauds as President Sullivan approaches the Rotunda for her meeting with the BOV

Contributed by Ellen Welchf

Vic Semper Flag of Rector Dragas

Contributed by Ellen Welch

Supporters for President Sullivan at 1st silent protest on the Lawn

Contributed by Ellen Welch

UVA Community claps for President Teresa Sullivan

Contributed by Ellen Welch

blog post on embracing online education

Contributed by Mike Judge

Twitter account created during the Rally for Transparency at UVA to keep up with the witty commentary and rapid news relating to the resignation of President Teresa Sullivan.

Contributed by Joanna

I took the liberty of borrowing an image from the UVa Special Collections, Holsinger Studio Collection, 1889 - 1939,
University of Virginia Rotunda Fire.

I then edited and cropped the image to make a poster for the rally. I proudly stood on the lawn holding it up during the inspirational speeches on that warm, muggy day.

Contributed by Sheila M. Newman

Music used by the band playing at 24 June rally. Contains UVa songs, traditional melodies, and several unauthorized arrangements of copyrighted tunes.

The Good Old Song
Virginia Hail, All Hail
My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean (Bring Back Transparency Please)
She'll Be Coming Round the Mountain
Stop! In the Name of Love
A Hard Day's Night
We're Not Gonna Take It
The Final Countdown (not used at rally)

Contributed by Annonymous

Contributed by Cynthia Smith

Photograph of UVA community silently protesting before Dr. Sullivan came to the BOV meeting on Monday

Contributed by Ellen

Though shot from a distance, so a bit fuzzy, I observed these people blogging and tweeting the rally.

Contributed by Christine G. H. Franck

Rally-goers sign the banner supporting President Sullivan. Erin Monaghan is in the orange cap.

Contributed by Christine G. H. Franck

Rally-goers sign the banner supporting President Sullivan.

Contributed by Christine G. H. Franck

Leaving the Lawn after the Rally for Honor I saw this banner at Pavilion IX.

Contributed by Christine G. H. Franck

Contributed by Christine G. H. Franck

Sign created for 1st Rally. If you don't have a physical sign let me know.

Contributed by Jeannine Cody

UVa librarians launch a Scholars' Lab aerial photography balloon at the Rally for Honor, June 24th.

Contributed by Bethany Nowviskie

The Sons of Liberty, a Secret Society on Grounds, provided an emergency Redcoat to the Board of Visitors to protest the "tyrannical" behavior of the Board. The Sons of Liberty award "Rebels & Redcoats" annually to heroes and villains of the University annually.

Contributed by Pat

Contributed by Herbert Hedstrom

Anne Coughlin speaks.

Contributed by Kirk Martini

Photograph taken at the June 18th "Silent Gathering on the Lawn."

Contributed by Bethany Nowviskie

Marcus Martin and Dorrie Fontaine speak.

Contributed by Kirk Martini

Ken Elzinga addresses the June 24 rally

Contributed by Kirk Martini

Contributed by Peter Norton