Petition for UBF Transparency

Petition for UB Foundation Transparency  updated as of April 13, 2016

American Association of University Professors, UB chapter

The persons listed below have endorsed the petition associated with our document, “The Other Buffalo Billion: Time for Transparency at the UB Foundation,” affirming that “we, the undersigned members of the UB community, and other SUNY donors and owners, the citizens of New York State, urge the UB Foundation and UB leadership to establish transparency for University at Buffalo Foundation revenues, expenditures, and investments—past, present, and future—while maintaining reasonable confidentiality for private donors.”

 

  • For our webpage, go here.
  • For a docx copy of “The Other Buffalo Billion,” go here.
  • To add your name to the petition, send the following message to UBAAUP@gmail.com: “I join UB-AAUP in urging the UB Foundation and UB leadership to establish transparency for University at Buffalo Foundation revenues, expenditures, and investments—past, present, and future—while maintaining reasonable confidentiality for private donors. I understand that my signature will be public.”

 

We will periodically update the list of signatures.

  1. Ablow, Rachel: Associate Professor of English
  2. Atleson, James: Professor of Law, Emeritus
  3. Baker, Susan: Professor of Pediatrics
  4. Bélanger, Sylvie: Associate Professor of Art
  5. Benson, Michelle: Associate Professor of Political Science
  6. Bisson, Mary A.: Professor of Biological Sciences
  7. Bono, Barbara J.: Associate Professor of English
  8. Bramen, Carrie: Associate Professor of English
  9. Bromley, Hank: Professor in the Graduate School of Education, Emeritus
  10. Brown, Murray: Professor Emeritus of Economics
  11. Bruenn, Jeremy: Professor of Biological Sciences, Emeritus
  12. Bunn, James: Professor of English Emeritus; former Dean, Faculty of Arts and Letters
  13. Cahn, Susan: Professor of History
  14. Chang, Winston: Professor of Economics
  15. Cohen, Richard: Professor of Philosophy
  16. Dauber, Kenneth: Professor of English
  17. Dennis, Carl: Professor of English Emeritus, Artist in Residence, Pulitzer Prize Winner for Poetry
  18. Des Forges, Roger: Professor of History Emeritus
  19. Dewald, Jonathan: UB Distinguished Professor of History
  20. Durand, Henry: Clinical Associate Professor of Educational Leadership
  21. Edelman, Arthur M.: Associate Professor of Toxicology and Pharmacology
  22. Efron, Art: Professor of English Emeritus
  23. Ellison, John W.: Associate Professor of LIS Emeritus
  24. Fertig, David: Professor of Linguistics
  25. Fleischer, Stephan: Associate Professor of English Emeritus
  26. French, Rebecca: Professor of Law
  27. Gerber, David A.: Distinguished Professor of History Emeritus
  28. Gottdeiner, Mark: Professor of Sociology Emeritus.
  29. Grinde, Don: Professor of Transnational Studies
  30. Halpern, Stephen: C. Professor of Political Science
  31. Hawk, Larry: Professor of Psychology
  32. Henderson, Adele: Professor of Art
  33. Herzberg, David: Associate Professor of History
  34. Hildenbrand, Suzanne: Professor Library and Information Studies Emerita
  35. Hochfield, George: Professor of English Emeritus; former Chair, Faculty Senate.
  36. Hoffman, Steve G.: Assistant Professor of Sociology
  37. Holmes, James M.: Professor of Economics
  38. Holstun, Jim: Professor of English
  39. Hwang, Joyce: Associate Professor of Architecture
  40. Iggers, Georg: SUNY Distinguished Professor of History Emeritus
  41. Johnson, David E.: Professor of Comparative Literature
  42. Katz, Jonathan: Associate Professor and Interim Chair of Art
  43. Keane, Damien: Associate Professor of English
  44. Korsmeyer, Carolyn: Professor of Philosophy
  45. Kristal, Mark B.: Professor of Psychology Emeritus
  46. Levine, Murray: Distinguished Service Professor of Psychology Emeritus
  47. Linder, Joan: Associate Professor of Art
  48. Luce, Paul A.: Professor of Psychology
  49. Lyon, Arabella: Professor of English
  50. Mack, Ruth: Associate Professor of English
  51. Mangold, Susan: Professor of Law, Emerita
  52. Marcus, Isabel: Professor of Law
  53. Masling, Joe: Professor Emeritus of Psychology
  54. Massey, Irving: Professor of English Emeritus
  55. Mather, Lynn: SUNY Distinguished Service Professor of Law and Political Science Emerita
  56. McCluskey, Martha: Professor of Law
  57. McDevitt, Patrick: Associate Professor of History
  58. Meier, Scott: Professor of Counseling, School, and Educational Psychology
  59. Meyerowitz, Ruth: Associate Professor of American Studies Emerita
  60. Milles, Jim: Professor of Law
  61. Mohan, Satish Associate Professor of Civil Engineering
  62. Morgan, Peter B.: Professor of Economics
  63. Murray, Sandra L.: Professor of Psychology
  64. Nightingale, Carl: Professor of Transnational Studies
  65. Nikolopoulou, Kalliopi: Associate Professor of Comparative Literature
  66. O’Brien, Michael R.: Clinical Instructor of Medicine, 2010-2014; now Clinical Instructor of Medicine, Yale School of Medicine
  67. Park, Lora: Instructor in Psychology
  68. Penniman, W. David: Professor Emeritus, Former Dean of UB School of Informatics
  69. Peterson, Lorna: Associate Professor Library and Information Studies Emerita
  70. Radford, Gail: Professor of History
  71. Reitzenstein, Reinhard: Associate Professor of Art
  72. Ross, Gary Earl: UB/EEOC, Professor Emeritus
  73. Rothenberg, Stephanie: Associate Professor of Art
  74. Scheider, William: Assistant Research Professor Emeritus, Epidemiology and Environmental Health
  75. Schindler, Melissa: Adjunct faculty and Ph.D. candidate in English
  76. Schmid, David: Associate Professor of English
  77. Schmitz, Neil: Professor of English Emeritus
  78. Seeman, Erik R.: Professor of History
  79. Seery, Mark: Associate Professor of Psychology
  80. Shucard, David: Professor of Neurology, Pediatrics, and Psychology
  81. Shucard, Janet: Associate Professor of Clinical Neurology
  82. Silverman, Robert: Professor of Urban and Regional Planning
  83. Slaughter, Malcolm: Professor of Physiology and Biophysics
  84. Soergel, Dagobert: Professor of Library and Information Studies
  85. Steinfeld, Robert: Professor of Law
  86. Stevens, Philip: Associate Professor of Anthropology
  87. Taussig-Rubbo, Mateo: Professor of Law
  88. Taylor, Henry: Professor, Center for Urban Studies
  89. Thornton, Tamara: Professor of History
  90. Tomkins, Suzanne: Clinical Professor of Law, Emerita
  91. Udin, Susan: Professor of Physiology
  92. Vanouse, Paul: Professor of Art
  93. Vardi, Liana: Professor of History
  94. Vargas, Margarita: Professor of Romance Languages
  95. Watrous, Livingston V.: Professor of Art
  96. Welch, Claude: SUNY Distinguished Service Professor of Political Science
  97. Wolcott, Victoria: Professor of History
  98. Wolf, Howard: Professor of English Emeritus
  99. Wu, Cynthia: Associate Professor of Transnational Studies
  100. Zagare, Frank C.: UB Distinguished Professor of Political Science
  101. Zarembka, Paul: Professor of Economics
  102. Garite, Matthew: Ph.D. in English
  103. Geer, Judy: MLS
  104. Harlow, Dennis: UB Law; Attorney, Lipsitz Ponterio
  105. Hogan, Sarah: Ph.D. in English, Assistant Professor, Wake Forest University
  106. Morrison, Irene: M.A. in English
  107. Lipsitz, John: UB Law; Founding Attorney, Lipsitz Ponterio
  108. Devinney, Gemma: Associate Librarian Emerita
  109. Dickson, Jean: Associate Librarian Emerita
  110. Finnegan, Shonnie: Librarian Emerita
  111. Bard, Jessica: NYS Citizen
  112. Bertland, Alexander: NYS Citizen, Professor at Niagara University
  113. Delaney, Michael: NYS Citizen, ECC faculty
  114. Giacalone, Art: NYS Citizen, Attorney
  115. Hemphill-Nichols, Veronica: NYS Citizen, Community Activist
  116. Liu, Lydia: NYS Citizen, Student at UC Berkeley
  117. Peterson, Sybil: NYS Citizen, Buffalo public school teacher, retired
  118. Tinker, Joanna: NYS Citizen
  119. Welch, Jon: NYS Citizen, Manager, Talking Leaves Bookstore
  120. Zanolli, Paul: NYS Citizen, Professor at ECC
  121. Donovan, Patricia: Office of University Communications, retired
  122. McCarthy, Timothy: NYS Citizen, Technical Services Librarian
  123. Acquario, Stephanie: NYS Citizen, Undergraduate, Communication
  124. Bard, Nicole: Undergraduate, Communication
  125. Cardon, Allison: Ph.D. candidate in English
  126. Dwyer, Vanessa: J. Undergraduate, Interdisciplinary Social Sciences
  127. Eager, Colin: Ph.D. candidate in History
  128. Ebbing, Melissa: Undergraduate, Biological Sciences
  129. Ege, Elif: Ph.D. candidate in Transnational Studies
  130. Flaccavento, Joshua: Ph.D. candidate in English
  131. Goffeney, Martin: Ph.D. candidate in English
  132. Gould, Declan: Ph.D. candidate in English
  133. Greer, Amy: Ph.D. candidate in English
  134. Grujic, Ana: Ph.D. candidate in English
  135. Hall, Joseph: Ph.D. candidate in English
  136. Hawkins, Cynthia: Ph.D. candidate in Transnational Studies
  137. Hossenlopp, Andrew: Undergraduate, Interdisciplinary Social Sciences
  138. Martin, Craig: Undergraduate, School of Management
  139. Poulin, Adam R.: Undergraduate, Psychology
  140. Purdy, Nicole M.: Undergraduate, Accounting
  141. Rinaldo, Lenore: Undergraduate, Interdisciplinary Social Sciences
  142. Tatar, Doruk: Ph.D. candidate in Comparative Literature
  143. Young, Alexander: Undergraduate, Environmental Engineering

 

Advertisements

2014 UUP resolution in favor of UBF transparency

Our ongoing UB AAUP advocacy chapter work in support of UBF transparency builds on previous efforts of the major representatives of UB faculty, both the Senate and the Buffalo Center chapter of the faculty /staff union, the UUP.  (Note that the UB AAUP is a separate faculty advocacy organization, affiliated with the national AAUP, not to be confused with the UUP union, although these entities have worked together from time to time).   As posted below, a Faculty Senate resolution seeking that the UB administration provide faculty access to UBF budget information passed by that body in 2014 after discussion in two Senate meetings. In addition, the local UUP chapter (Buffalo Center) passed a similar resolution in 2014.  A report on this union resolution from the UB Spectrum is available here and excerpted below:  http://www.ubspectrum.com/article/2014/04/ubs-union-approves-resolution-to-make-ub-foundation-more-transparent

The Buffalo Center Chapter of the United University Professions (UUP), UB’s union representing academic and professional employees, came to a resolution last Friday requesting the UB Foundation (UBF) be more transparent in and accountable for its financial decisions.

“UBF is a non-profit, private organization that handles the millions of dollars in donations UB receives annually. …

The resolution states: “Accountability and transparency in decisions regarding spending for public purposes by public officials is vital to maintaining public trust and excellence in public institutions such as the University at Buffalo. Be it resolved that the Buffalo Center Chapter of the UUP requests that University at Buffalo demonstrate its leadership in public accountability and transparency by making available records of budgets, revenue, spending, and related policies involving UB Foundation funds as if those records were subject to the proposed FOIL legislation.”

2014 Faculty Senate Resolution supporting UB Foundation Transparency

Our UB AAUP chapter’s current work in support of UBF transparency builds on the 2014 Faculty Senate Resolution requesting transparency in UBF revenue and spending. Excerpts from the UB Reporter are below. In his official  response to that Resolution, (available at this link Tripathi-Response) , President Tripathi declined on the ground that he lacks authority over disclosure of UBF records.  President Tripathi is a member of the Board of Trustees of UBF, and according to several UBF public statements and web site postings, the UBF delegates much of its decision making about spending to President Tripathi.

See:  UB Reporter Campus News, Faculty Senate asks that UBF ‘open its books’,By SUE WUETCHER and CHARLOTTE HSU, Published June 19, 2014:

The Faculty Senate voted at its meeting Tuesday to ask the university administration to make the UB Foundation’s budget public.

The 38-17 vote in favor of the resolution asking that the UBF “open its books” — the senate achieved a quorum for the first time in recent memory — was on the second reading of the resolution. It now goes to President Satish K. Tripathi, who will review it and make a final decision on whether the resolution becomes university policy. . . .

In response to the resolution, UB issued a statement saying that the university “values transparency and understands the importance of being transparent and forthright in its endeavors and communications“This is an important and useful discussion for the university community to be having,” the statement read. “The university will review and consider the Faculty Senate resolution after it has been formally presented to the president.

The Faculty Senate resolution, drafted by Kenneth Dauber, professor of English, stated that the Faculty Senate is responsible for providing oversight of UB’s budget and recommending funding priorities — a task, he said, that may be difficult when the senate does not have complete information about how money is being used on behalf of the university. The resolution asks that the budget of UBF and its associated foundations be made available “as if it were subject to FOIL.”

 

 

Letter to editor responding to UB Foundation Chair

Letter to the editor in the Buffalo News, March 14, 2016, page A9 “UB Foundation needs to be more transparent:    http://www.buffalonews.com/opinion/letters-to-the-editor/letter-ub-foundation-needs-to-be-more-transparent-20160314

UB Foundation needs to be more transparent

As a colleague in the Buffalo legal community and a fellow alumnus of the UB Law School, I feel compelled to respond to Francis Letro’s Another Voice appearing in The News on March 8 concerning the University at Buffalo Foundation (UBF) and its rejection of recent calls for transparency.

The UB American Association of University Professors (AAUP) chapter’s recent “White Paper” calling on the UBF to open its books to public disclosure and accountability did not, as Letro inaccurately stated, “malign” anyone. It simply sought public disclosure of information that should long ago have been made public. The recent decision by the New York State Committee on Open Government, the existing legal requirements in more than a half dozen states that regulate foundations affiliated with public universities and the strong and laudatory recent News editorial calling for greater transparency all support the position advanced by the UB AAUP chapter.

What is so subversive about seeking public transparency for an entity that conducts its business in the name of a public university and solicits donations from the public on behalf of that university? As the White Paper asks: What is there to hide? Letro’s column says, in effect, “Just trust us.” But beyond his profession of good faith, he provides no evidence that UBF is acting in the best interests of the university and the community or that its governance is democratic and open.

I am proud of the fact that the law school is part of the State University of New York, a public institution. As such, I believe its administration should be kept out of private and essentially unaccountable hands.

John Ned Lipsitz, Esq.

Buffalo

From: http://www.buffalonews.com/opinion/letters-to-the-editor/letter-ub-foundation-needs-to-be-more-transparent-20160314

Buffalo News editorial: UBF Secrecy Jarring

Secrecy surrounding the UB Foundation is a jarring note for a public institution

 

http://www.buffalonews.com/opinion/buffalo-news-editorials/secrecy-surrounding-the-ub-foundation-is-a-jarring-note-for-a-public-institution-20160225

The University at Buffalo Foundation occupies a peculiar place in Western New York’s public life. It is a private entity, but one whose purpose is to support one of the most important public institutions in the region. As such, it has a common-sense duty to operate transparently and efficiently. The university’s standing depends on it, yet the foundation isn’t doing the former, which makes it difficult to determine whether it is doing the latter.

The issue arises in light of an analysis of the foundation’s spending conducted by a UB faculty organization. What it found was disconcerting – not illegal, not unethical, but also not in keeping with the policies of an organization seeking to maximize its influence. All of Western New York has an interest in the foundation doing just that.

 

Buffalo News: Faculty group’s report criticizes UB Foundation over spending on salaries

Feb. 24, 2016 news story (click link for full article; excerpts below) :

“According to a report critical of the University at Buffalo Foundation’s spending, about 7 percent of the organization’s expenditures in 2013 were for student scholarships.”

“That was one of the findings of a new document by a UB faculty organization renewing calls for the foundation to open its books and provide a more transparent accounting of how it receives and spends money. The UB chapter of the American Association of University Professors on Tuesday began circulating a petition urging the university and foundation administration to reveal a more detailed accounting of revenues, expenditures and investments – from the current year and past years.

Requests for more transparency from the foundation were misguided, since it is the university that determines how all of the foundation funds are spent, he said [UB Foundation Executive Director Ed Schneider].”

The report also raises concerns about the people who control the foundation as trustees and directors on its board and the boards of seven affiliated nonprofit entities. Many of those board members have direct, indirect or potential private business interests in the foundation’s spending and investment, according to the report.”

N.Y. Committee on Open Government, Advisory Opinion: UB Foundation is subject to FOIL

The New York Committee on Open Government, in the NY Dept. of State, has issued an advisory opinion that the UB Foundation is subject to FOIL.  The opinion advises that the contrary lower court ruling in 2011 is not consistent with precedent.