Donna Shalala (Iran 1962-64) is back on the front page of the paper. Remember last August 2011 when there was a brief flare up about one of the fancy donors to her college– University of Miami where she is president–who was in jail. He said he had ‘paid off’ football players with gifts?
Well, now the story on the front page of the January 20, 2012, The Chronicle of Higher Education says that she made almost a half a million dollars in 2010 from serving on three companies’ boards. Two of those companies are run by university trustees. “That’s just a no-no,” according to a Jay W. Lorsch, professor of human relations at Harvard Business School, and someone who has expertise in corporate governance.
Donna isn’t the only college president with her hand in the cookie jar. The article entitled, “Board Conflicts Abound for College Chiefs” focuses on several other ‘chiefs’, including the former president of Penn State, Graham Spanier, and the president of Stanford University, John Hennessy. Donna is not in ‘bad’ academic company, you might say.
Donna and the other two administrators at U. of Miami who are involved in the double-dipping which Professor Lorsch calls, “appearance of impropriety” all declined to be interviewd by the reporters who did the front page story for the Chronicle.
Of course, all the presidents say that as ‘college leaders’ they can learn valuable management lessons in corporate boardrooms, ‘while also imparting their own wisdom from academe’ to the lay members.
Yes, President Spanier at Penn State, really did show a lot of ‘academic wisdom’ in handling the Jerry Sandusky child sexual abuse situation at State College. Not!
Let’s hope Donna doesn’t have other skeletons in her closet!