On Friday, the Baylor Board of Regents met to discuss a range of issues, including the new academic strategic plan, tuition increases, and the upcoming fundraising campaign. They also introduced six new Regents, including Alumni-Elected Regents Katie Jo Luningham and Gordon Wilkerson, as well as new Chief Business Officer Brett Dalton, who joins Baylor from Clemson.
Questions from the press focused on recent statements made in a deposition by former Athletic Director Ian McCaw. When asked about her reaction to McCaw’s comments, Dr. Livingstone affirmed her support for actions that were taken by the Board of Regents.
“We’re very confident the facts in those situations have not changed and that the decisions that the Board made at the time those facts were released were the right decisions. We stand by those decisions as an institution and we also feel very good about the ongoing work that the university has done to implement the recommendations that came out of the work of Pepper Hamilton.”
Livingstone defended the investigative work done by Pepper Hamilton, which has also come under scrutiny in recent allegations.
“The attorneys that did that investigation are two of the most highly regarded and respected experts in the country, particularly in higher education, on issues of sexual assault, violence, and Title IX. They are used by top universities all over the country because they know what needs to be done in those areas. We have great confidence in the work that they do, and their honesty and forthrightness, and (they) really held us deeply accountable for issues on campus. So we have a lot of confidence in what they recommended, and is why we implemented all of those recommendations, and done that so fully to be at a completely different place now than where we were four years ago.”
Dr. Joel Allison addressed McCaw’s comments that some of the Board’s decisions during the sexual assault scandal were motivated by racism.
“Those are accusations, allegations,” Allison said. “I don’t see them substantiated by facts. That’s not been my experience with a Board member, and while they are serious allegations, I haven’t seen facts behind it. I think we have to understand as we move forward that’s not Baylor, and talking about racism, that’s serious. We take that seriously. Right now, we are one of the most diverse universities in the Big XII. I think we are number four in diversity. And this incoming class is 36% underrepresented groups. We take that seriously. I’ve never seen (racism) as a member of the Board or working with administration. Never been witness to that. . . There’s no place for racism in this university, and I have not personally seen it or witnessed it.”
Asked if there is concern that ongoing allegations and the upcoming depositions of 60+ employees will compromise fundraising goals in the Fall, Dr. Livingstone remained confident that Baylor alumni and donors will remain focused on the future rather than the past.
“There’s great love and care and concern for Baylor,” Livingstone said. “And people want to come around us and move the institution forward. We’re confident that our community understands where we are now versus where we were a few years ago. How different we are. And they’re ready to come around us and support us. I think they also recognize the strength and resilience of Baylor, and have seen how strong our enrollment has remained. Our class this year is coming in right at our target. It’s our highest academic quality class ever. Our giving has remained, and really even went up this last year over previous years. it’s been over a hundred million for seven years in a row. The enrollment numbers, the giving numbers, the financial position of the institution, are very strong and I think the Baylor family recognizes that and wants to come alongside us, and move forward to help make Illuminate a reality.”
NCAA and Department of Education investigations into Baylor remain in process, and Baylor leadership is yet to know the timing of when those investigations will be resolved.
In regards to today’s meeting agenda, the Board voted to approve a 4% tuition increase, which is the same number as the previous year and part of an ongoing goal to temper rising costs for students. Dr. Livingstone will also be hiring a search firm to help hire a Provost, and the search is expected to ramp up in the Fall.
4 thoughts on “Livingstone and Allison Address Recent Allegations”
If there were indeed credibility to the Pepper Hamilton investigation and to the firing of Art Briles, Ian McCaw, and Kenneth Star then Why did the Board of Regents pay Art Briles 15 million Dollars to walk away from his job? You said you fired him but you forgot to say you just gave him a cool 15 million to leave.
If Art Briles was guilty as you claim he was How can you justify giving such a man a payout that would provide an education to hundreds of students in the form of a scholarship into the future? How can you justify rewarding such bad behavior with a payout that basically puts Art Briles in a position where he will never need to work for a living again. He can live very well on that kind of payout without ever working again.
If Art Briles is as he claims not guilty of anything except not being as selective as he should have been to transferees from other schools. If this was as he claims an effort to bring down the Baylor Football program then You have played a significant part in that effort. You have deliberately tried to destroy multiple individuals lives and employment futures (though you did pay a rather large severance) all because you want to sweep something that existed before and will still exist after under the rug.
Either way you have waisted precious dollars that could go to educate tomorrows future on paying off individuals you say are bad to just leave. If there were a moral and ethical cell in any of you, you would quit today.
The document that guides the Boards actions is not the Bible, but a confidentiality agreement. They are not interested in you knowing the truth. The Bible says you shall know the truth, and the truth will set you free. This whole sexual assault fiasco would be over if the Board did not withhold the truth but let the full truth be told.
I believe Judge Starr, Coach Briles were scapegoats!! There was no transparency in that Pepper Hamilton report. Regents released only parts of the report! The players who were the offenders should have been punished but not Coach Briles, Judge Starr & the whole football staff. Now we are in the cellar!!’ WRONGFULLY TREATED!
Before and during all the accusations, battles for power, lawsuits, and continuing institutional embarrassment, hundreds of faculty have been delivering top notch instruction to thousands of exceptional students. That is what Baylor is about, not the other.