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Vilsack laid foundation

James Tomkovicz

Des Moines Register

December 3, 2006

[Note: This material is copyright by the Des Moines Register, and is reproduced here as a matter of "fair use" for non-commercial, educational purposes only. Any other use may require the prior approval of the Des Moines Register.]

I noted in the Nov. 21 Register that Gov. Tom Vilsack has advised all involved in the University of Iowa presidential search to take "a breather" ("Regents Had Job Finalist in Mind").

This might be wise advice were it not for the destructive conduct of certain regents appointed by the outgoing governor, and the near certainty that these regents cannot be trusted to put the U of I's interests first.

Faculty and staff for whom I have the utmost respect, people of the highest integrity - co-vice-chairs, Dr. Francois Abboud and Prof. Katherine Tachau, and Faculty Senate President Prof. Sheldon Kurtz - have made it clear that the regents have wholly undermined trust by their duplicitous behavior.

Vilsack is surely right to suggest that all should focus their energies on enlisting a top-notch leader for our great institution. However, before that process can go forward constructively, the governor should temporarily put aside his presidential ambitions and take action to remedy this potentially devastating problem that is directly traceable to his ill-considered appointments.

Prof. James Tomkovicz,
Iowa City