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MSU Regents Vote Down Contract Extension for Dunn; Faculty Regent Jack Rose Resigns


Murray State’s Board of Regents has voted 7 to 4 against extending President Randy Dunn’s contract. The decision comes despite the letters of support for Dunn from the school’s faculty senate and staff congress, as well as 27 west Kentucky school superintendents.

The vote came as a surprise, because the report from an ad-hoc committee to review the president's contract lasted less than one minute and included only one action item,  approving minutes from the committee's first meeting in February.

The regents voting to extend Dunn's contract were Faculty Regent Jack Rose, Staff Regent Phil Schooley, Susan Guess, and Jenny Sewell.

Voting against the contract extension were Constantine Curris, Marilyn Buchanon, Sharon Green, Jeremiah Johnson, Jerry Sue Thornton, Harry Lee Waterfield II,  and Stephen Williams.

Prior to making a motion to extend Dunn's contract, Faculty Regent Jack Rose asked, "Did I miss something,"  insinuating  he didn't think the board was ready to vote on the issue.

Jack Rose has told WKMS that he has now resigned from the board of regents. He says he has "concerns about the direction the board is heading." Rose declined further comment on the issue.

Following the vote Dunn made a brief statement that he does maintain a full professorship within MSU's college of education and could assume that position when his contract expires June 2014. 

After the meeting Curris  said each board member made their own decision based on their own opinions.  He told the board he would vote with the majority. He also said through,  if he had to cast a tie breaking vote, he would have voted no. Curris said his vote hinged on the board being split saying, "A president or university can't function well if the President doesn't have a strong majority of his board."

Curris also addressed speculation of bringing in another member of the Alexander family to serve as MSU's next or interim president. Kern Alexander and his son King have both served as MSU President in the past 15 years and the speculation is that Kern's second son Clint Alexander may be among interested parties for the position. Curris denied all of those claims.

Board Vice-Chair Marilyn Buchanon nominated Curris to head the process for beginning a national search for another MSU President. Curris did acknowledge that he is employed by a national search firm, specializing in university presidents.

The board also unanimously approved a list of recommendations for immediate cuts and new revenue for the university. The list includes $5-million in cuts and $1-million in new revenue. The list also includes deferred study items including an evaluation of WKMS costs. School administrators will now begin budget planning for the next academic year.

Shelly Baskin works in MSU's Office of Regional Outreach and is a graduate student in Occupational Safety and Health. A roustabout from Memphis, Tennessee, Shelly first found his way into WKMS through the newsroom back in 2011 through luck, charm and force of will. Though he left news for another position, he still enjoys working on independent radio projects and volunteering for the station. He’s an avid disc golfer and occasional real golfer and is terrible at both. A lover of all things musical, Shelly is always ready to hear something new and unique.
Chad Lampe, a Poplar Bluff, Missouri native, was raised on radio. He credits his father, a broadcast engineer, for his technical knowledge, and his mother for the gift of gab. At ten years old he broke all bonds of the FCC and built his own one watt pirate radio station. His childhood afternoons were spent playing music and interviewing classmates for all his friends to hear. At fourteen he began working for the local radio stations, until he graduated high school. He earned an undergraduate degree in Psychology at Murray State, and a Masters Degree in Mass Communication. In November, 2011, Chad was named Station Manager in 2016.
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