The Dartmouth College Board of Trustees announced a series of actions taken at its June 2007 meeting, including:
Haldeman, the new Board chair, has served as CEO at Putnam since November 2003, having joined the firm as senior managing director and investment head in the prior year. He previously served as CEO of Delaware Investments and as president and chief operating officer of the United Asset Management Corp. after 24 years with Cooke and Bieler Inc. He graduated summa cum laude from Dartmouth, majoring in economics, earned Phi Beta Kappa honors, and received M.B.A. and J.D. degrees from Harvard University in 1974. Haldeman has served for many years in various Dartmouth volunteer leadership capacities, including as a member of the Dean's Council and the President's Leadership Council, as an Alumni Fund leadership agent, class agent and regional agent, and as a scholarship fund chair. He was elected to the Dartmouth Board in 2004.
In a letter to alumni (62kb, PDF), Haldeman wrote, "It is with enormous pride that I write to you today as the new incoming chair of the Board of Trustees of Dartmouth College. Like so many of you, the four years I spent on the Hanover Plain were among the most rewarding of my life and shaped who I am today." He also wrote, "Dartmouth has never been stronger than it is today."
Stephen F. Mandel Jr.'78, the new charter Trustee who assumes Neukom's seat, is the founder of Lone Pine Capital (LPC), a financial management firm he started in 1997. Prior to founding LPC, he was managing director and consumer analyst at Tiger Management Corporation (1990-1997), mass-market retailing analyst at Goldman Sachs (1984-1990) and consultant at Mars and Company (1982-1984). Mandel graduated from Phillips Exeter Academy (1974), Dartmouth College (1978), and Harvard Business School (1982). He is a trustee of Teach for America and a former trustee of Phillips Exeter Academy and The Children's School. He is also a founder and board member of the Lone Pine Foundation, whose mission is to help children and families in the greater New York City area.
"I greatly appreciate this opportunity to serve Dartmouth as a member of the Board of Trustees," said Mandel, "and I'm excited about working with the rest of the Board to keep the College a leading higher education institution that contributes greatly to society."
President James Wright added, "I am delighted that Steve has joined the Board and I look forward to working with him. His experience and talents will be great assets to the College."
Mandel's appointment along with that of Stephen F. Smith '88, elected in May to succeed Nancy K. Jeton '76, is effective immediately.
Black and Fernandez, who were re-elected for four-year terms, both joined the Board in June 2002. Black is the founding principal of the New York investment firm Apollo Management LP. Fernandez is a partner in the New York office of Latham & Watkins LLP and Global co-chair of the firm's Latin America practice.
Budget approvals, governance
The Board also approved the operating and capital budgets for the College, which included additional funds to support the faculty, including startup costs and library acquisitions, enhanced stipends for graduate students, and a financial aid budget of nearly $60 million. The capital budget included funding to begin the Life Sciences Building project. The College plans to begin construction of the facility later this year. Plans are also moving forward for construction of a Visual Arts Center, the Class of 1953 Commons, and a replacement for Thayer Dining Hall.
The Trustees approved a Statement on Governance and Trustee Responsibilities that Chairman Neukom said grew out of a Board study started several years ago and reflected the best practices for governing boards.
Review of Board size, composition, and selection
The Governance Committee of the Board also initiated a review of the size, composition, and selection of Trustees to ensure the College has a strong and effective governing body.
In a memo to the full Board (73kb, PDF), the Governance Committee noted, "one of the most important responsibilities of the Board is the selection of the members of the Board. Consistent with that responsibility, the Board has on several occasions over the past 50 years undertaken studies of the size, composition, and method of selection of members of the Board. This was last done comprehensively in 1990. At the 2003 meeting, based on a brief study, the Board resolved to expand gradually from 16 to 22 members. Since that time, numerous questions have been raised about whether the size, makeup, and selection processes are adequate to address the educational challenges facing the College now and in the future."
The memo continues, "Concerns have also been expressed about whether the processes for nominating Trustees might be improved and whether there are alternatives that would better serve the interests of the College. The Alumni Trustee nomination process has recently taken on the characteristics of a political campaign, becoming increasingly contentious, divisive, and costly for the participants. Alumni have also raised questions about the fairness of the multiple-candidate, approval-voting, and plurality-winner features of the process. We believe a highly politicized process for Trustee selection—and one which may dissuade many highly qualified alumni from seeking nomination—may not be in the best interests of Dartmouth or its students."
For these reasons, the Governance Committee initiated a review "to evaluate in a comprehensive manner the size and composition of the Board and the method of Trustee selection in order to ensure that Dartmouth has the optimal governing body going forward." The Governance Committee—one of the standing committees of the Board, which is chaired by Trustee Christine Bucklin '84—expects to report back to the full Board at its September meeting. In addition to Bucklin, other members of the Governance Committee are Ed Haldeman '70, John Donahoe '82, Michael Chu '68, and James Wright.
Bucklin said that as part of its review, the committee will solicit input from Trustees, Trustees emeriti, alumni leadership, and other members of the Dartmouth community. She also said that the committee will gather information on the best practices followed by other educational institutions and other nonprofit organizations. Bucklin noted, "No decisions have been made as of yet, and any recommendations to the Board will be based on the committee's sense of what is in the best interest of the College and its current and future students."
The Dartmouth Board of Trustees has ultimate responsibility for the financial, administrative, and academic affairs of the College, including long-range strategic planning, approving operating and capital budgets, managing the endowment, overseeing the educational program, leading fund-raising efforts, setting tuition and fees, and approving major policy changes. The Board currently consists of 18 members, including eight alumni Trustees nominated by alumni vote and elected by the Board, eight charter Trustees selected by the Board, the Governor of New Hampshire (ex officio) and the president of the College.
By ROLAND ADAMS
The Governance Committee is soliciting input for its evaluation, from alumni, students, faculty, staff, parents, and others. To comment, visit the Web site.
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Last Updated: 12/17/08