Fox Answers Council on Board Service, Referendum

    In the third question-and-answer session between administrators and councilmembers, Chancellor Marye Anne Fox made an appearance at yesterday’s A.S. Council meeting to address student issues regarding the hiring of new vice chancellors and the athletics fee referendum.

    A.S. President Harry Khanna posed the first question, referring to a statement Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Joseph W. Watson made during his talk with the council last week. Watson had said he would recommend that Fox approve the referendum if a large student majority approved the fee, even without the required turnout percentage.

    “”How does the chancellor feel about his disregard for policy?”” Khanna asked. Fox responded that the election will give students the chance to speak, which administrators will hear “”very clearly.””

    However, Thurgood Marshall Junior Senator Kyle Samia pressed for a more specific answer.

    “”I hope it bodes out so that I won’t have to answer this question,”” Fox answered. “”Help me, so I don’t have to make a difficult decision.””

    Eleanor Roosevelt College Senior Senator Erik Rodriguez-Palacios raised the issue of campus staff taking sides on the election.

    “”Members of the athletic department have gone to colleges in strong support of this referendum,”” Rodriguez-Palacios said. “”Do you think this is appropriate behavior of the staff to actively support this?””

    Fox did not voice any dissatisfaction with any members of the department.

    “”I’m not surprised that the athletics department feels strongly one way,”” Fox said. “”I wouldn’t restrict free speech on one side or the other.””

    Vice President Finance Conrad Ohashi started his question by explaining that he looked Fox up on Wikipedia, pulling an “”oh boy”” from the chancellor. He read a paragraph, which described a vote Fox cast against Boston College in the first round of the Atlantic Coast Conference expansion. Ohashi asked for Fox’s reaction to the statement.

    “”You shouldn’t believe anything you read on Wikipedia,”” Fox answered. “”It was not possible to stop that machine. The general description of this comes up with details that are inaccurate.””

    Ohashi responded that he will work on editing the entry. Fox also addressed the issue of her positions on several paid boards, which has been a subject of scrutiny, especially after the UC Board of Regents recently passed policies capping the number of boards on which high-level administrators could serve.

    “”Before I came to UCSD, I sat on four boards,”” Fox said. “”I was given permission to continue that service. I use vacation time when working on other boards. All my vacations were fully approved and I have never exceeded the time available.””

    Khanna then returned to his previous question, saying that Watson’s comment was “”disappointing.””

    “”Let me ask in more narrow terms,”” Khanna said. “”If you receive that recommendation, would you relay it to the president?””

    Fox answered she would not send anything through without a full consultation with students involved.

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