Dunn Challenges Ad Hoc Contract Review Committee Draft Report

Apr 17, 2013

Murray State University President Randy Dunn, in an open forum Tuesday, presented counterpoints to a report used to assess university progress during his time as president.  On April 2nd  Board of Regents Chairman Constantine Curris defended that same report to a group of faculty and staff.

The ad hoc contract review committee draft report used metrics to show progress or lack thereof in multiple categories. Dunn said there was cherry picking of those metrics. He said a response to those metrics provided by faculty member Fred Miller was a good interpretation the data. Dunn also says the report misinterpreted his relationship with the board.

"There clearly was disagreement between the board and myself and to a lesser degree the board as a whole. but disagreement does not mean disrespect," Dunn said.

Chairman Curris said the erosion of Dunn’s relationship with the board correlated with Dunn’s repeated attempts to leave MSU for another position. Dunn said his searches could have been avoided if the board would have addressed renewing his contract in April 2012 after the board completed a comprehensive evaluation of Dunn’s performance. Dunn said Curris wouldn’t have the board discuss his contract at that time.  Dunn also said he requested the board bring in a facilitator, at no cost, to help mend the relationship. Dunn said that request was denied.  This week, Dunn has been named a finalist to Youngstown State University’s next president. Curris hasn’t responded to recent requests for comment.

During Curris' response to the ad hoc report on April 2nd he didn’t provide a particular metric as a reason for the board’s vote not to extend Dunn a new contract. On March 15th, immediately following the board’s vote Curris said it was the “feeling” of a majority of the board to vote against extending Dunn a new contract.  Curris has justified his “no” vote by saying he assured board members he would vote with the majority of the board. And if a tie vote, Curris said he still would have voted no because he doesn’t think an organization can function well with a board split in support of its CEO.