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Faculty Senate Statement

June 11, 2012 — Yesterday, the Faculty of the University of Virginia, along with the rest of the University community, learned that the Board of Visitors and President Sullivan “mutually agreed that she will step down as president of the University of Virginia effective August 15, 2012.” We are shocked and dismayed by this news. We were blindsided by this decision.

The Faculty Senate Executive Council has worked closely and effectively with President Sullivan during her two-year term. She has impressed us with her intelligence, leadership, and commitment to transparent administration and open, honest communication. We witnessed her renowned dedication to higher education. She excited faculty across the Grounds and created a sense of optimism about the University’s future.

We find the Board’s statement inadequate and unsatisfactory. We understand that the University, like most of its peer institutions, faces tremendous challenges. We believe President Sullivan made meaningful progress toward meeting these challenges, and put in place strategies and personnel to move the University forward.

As elected representatives of the faculty, we are entitled to a full and candid explanation of this sudden and drastic change in University leadership. We intend to investigate this matter thoroughly and expeditiously, and will meet with the Board as soon as possible. The Faculty Senate will continue to gather and give voice to faculty views and do all we can to preserve and protect strong faculty governance at the University.

We are determined and committed that Mr. Jefferson’s University will continue to be a beacon of excellence, honor, and compassion in a troubled world.

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