Last week Kyle discussed an article by FIRE Co-founder and Chairman Harvey Silverglate and Joe Malchow on the latest developments regarding the Dartmouth Board of Trustees and the college’s alumni. A group of Dartmouth alumni have petitioned the New Hampshire Superior Court to re-open a lawsuit against Dartmouth’s Board of Trustees that had been dismissed in June 2008 after Dartmouth administrators engineered a takeover of its alumni association, as outlined in this amicus curiae brief filed by Harvey on behalf of former petition trustee Todd Zywicki. Zywicki was booted from the board in April.
The amicus brief is highlighted today in greater detail by the student newspaper The Dartmouth.
At issue is whether the court will legally enforce an 1891 agreement allowing alumni to elect half of the college’s non-ex-officio trustees—an agreement that has been violated by the college to tighten its control and limit alumni influence. As Harvey tells The Dartmouth:
"The 1891 agreement allowed Dartmouth alumni to elect trustees who didn’t parrot the administration’s values," he said. "This made Dartmouth a model of good governance. Now, Dartmouth is in danger of not maintaining the past level of excellence unless alumni take their ability to exert meaningful input and influence."
FIRE will be following this case with great interest.