Statement from the Board of Trustees:
The Board of Trustees of Western Colorado University is the governing body of the university. One of the board’s duties is to hire, fire, and supervise the president, the chief executive officer of the university.
On March 9, 2021, the Board of Trustees received the results of a faculty referendum for new leadership. The board also recognizes many additional comments, both supporting and opposing new leadership, that it has received from students, donors, parents, alumni, and others in the Western community.
Given all the factors involved, we support the president and look forward to fostering unity through transparency and accountability, bringing together the best efforts of the board, the president, faculty, students, and the entire Western community, to lead Western successfully into the future.
Demonstrating our commitment to the concept of shared governance of Western, the Board of Trustees assures the faculty and the Western community that we:
A. Acknowledge the referendum and voting results which highlight faculty concerns.
B. Stipulate that building trust in the Western community must be prioritized.
C. Affirm our commitment to prioritize diversity, equity and inclusivity at Western as set forth in our Statement on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.
D. Agree that “Western’s success, economic viability, and ability to recruit and retain students is inextricable from our commitment to diversity, as well as our moral values and leadership.”
E. Expect the President, through his leadership, to unite the broader Western community, to achieve a commitment to mutual respect, collaboration, and student outcomes.
President Salsbury and his team have led Western with commendable success in recognizing the competitive challenges facing Western, as a small, rural public university, including notable achievements in major gift solicitation, representing our institution to our peers and state government, increasing enrollment, increasing diversity, creating the partnership with the University of Colorado, and leading the Western community through the COVID-19 pandemic.
The trustees agree that building trust in the Western community must be prioritized. The board has adopted appropriate guidance for the president and faculty. To bring together the best efforts of the board, the president, faculty, students, and the entire Western community, the board has adopted an Action Plan that will: (1) Improve trustee communications and outreach; (2) Discern and proclaim the core values of Western; (3) Improve administrative communications; and (4) Strengthen the commitment of Western to shared governance.
The board encourages the entire Western community to review our Action Plan, and to participate wholeheartedly in its implementation.
Author Credit: The Board of Trustees of Western Colorado University
Photo Credit: Western Marketing