The need to write this letter disappoints and saddens me.
Penn State President Eric Barron made a very favorable first impression with his plan to hold down college attendance costs. His dismissal of the Freeh report as not useful for decision-making purposes reinforced that favorable impression.
On May 5, however, he chose to publicly malign the alumni-elected trustees with false accusations of waging war on Penn State, exposing the university to financial harm and violating the board’s Expectations of Membership.
I and thousands of other alumni installed these trustees to repair the genuine damage to Penn State that resulted from the board’s incompetence (Nov. 9, 2011); dishonesty (as proved by trustees Keith Masser and Kenneth Frazier’s unwilling depositions in the Corman-NCAA lawsuit); dereliction of fiduciary duty (the opinion of the Commonwealth Court as stated April 9, 2014); violations of the board’s Expectations of Membership (then-Chairwoman Karen Peetz’s unauthorized affirmation of the Freeh report in July 2012); and subordination of Penn State’s well-being to personal agendas as described by state Sen. John Yudichak. Yudichak then cited Masser explicitly as a major trouble source.
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Barron’s attack on the alumni trustees is therefore an attack on the alumni, which ends his presidency in all but name.
He can continue to draw his salary and take up space in Old Main. He can, however, no longer command the trust, respect and confidence of the alumni whose goodwill he needs to make his tenure any more meaningful than Rodney Erickson’s.
William A. Levinson