To John Pelissero, Provost
24 March 2015
The Executive Committee of Loyola’s Lakeside AAUP Chapter would like to register our concerns over the current procedure for appointing a permanent dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. To be very clear, our concerns are not related to the qualifications or performance of Fr. Tom Regan, whom we have in fact found uncommonly receptive and helpful. The question of how the dean is appointed, however, goes beyond the individuals involved.
Although deans are appointed by the president with the advice of the senior academic officers, their selection has always entailed a process by which faculty, students, and staff have the opportunity to vet several candidates and offer feedback to a search committee. The participatory nature of such processes confer legitimacy on the resulting appointments. We see value, too, in the comparative nature of these searches, which allow the community to evaluate multiple candidates’ distinctive leadership styles and visions for the College.
We appreciate your polling the faculty, through our department chairs, on Fr. Regan’s management of the College. Still, a regular search process—even if an internal rather than a national one, and even if, in the end, it resulted in the appointment now contemplated—seems to us a more appropriate way to select a CAS dean.
With so many interim appointments to high administrative positions now on the horizon, we are also apprehensive about what the current selection process for CAS dean may prefigure. The issue, again, is not the individuals involved but the principle that for the sake of both the Loyola community and the administrators themselves, regular, formal, and participatory procedures should be followed when permanent appointments are made.
The Lakeside AAUP Executive Committee
David Chinitz, President; Alanah Fitch, Past President; David Embrick, Vice President; Suzanne Kaufman, Membership Chair; David Ingram, Treasurer; Devorah Schoenfeld, Secretary; Pamela Caughie, Appeals Advocate; Pamela Osenkowski, Thomas Tobin, SJ, and Paige Warren, At-Large Representatives; Lisa Davidson and Justin Hastings, Graduate Student Representatives; Kasey Henricks, Webmaster