THE BLADE, THE UT BOARD OF TRUSTEES, AND PRESIDENT JACOBS WEAVE A TANGLED WEB

The University of Toledo President Lloyd Jacobs has the best bosses in the world! The members of the UT Board of Trustees (who are named later in this post) must be either clueless about and/or complicit with the failed tenure of Jacobs. What other supervisors would respond to the questionable actions of an employee for whom they are responsible by rewarding him with a year of well-paid employment instead of a pink slip? The UT Board—that’s who.

After the recent UT scandal involving Rick Stansley that resulted in representatives from the Ohio Attorney General’s office meeting with the UT Board, it wasn’t surprising that Jacobs announced his departure—but who would have guessed his exit wouldn’t be until 2015? How does a man who was at the helm of an institution that aided Stansley with sheltering his income from being garnished because of $1 million in back taxes not get the axe—like now?

Particularly interesting is that two of the Board members are officials in the banking industry. If anyone should be concerned with the importance of ethics and laws, one would think it would be these people.

Oftentimes, the public outcry over situations like the Stansley case is fueled by local media coverage. One thing that Jacobs has going for him is that the president and general manager of The Blade, Joe Zerbey, is the chairman of the UT Board. Jacobs catches all the breaks!

Zerbey isn’t about to embarrass himself and the other members of the Board (one of whom is a frequent contributor to the newspaper) by “investigating” this story to its fullest extent. Even if he chose to reveal what he knows, he would have control over the timing and intervals at which this information would be disseminated. Zerbey may very well be the poster boy for “conflict of interest.”

Toledoans deserve better than this. A step in the right direction would be for the Board to do what it should have in the first place—immediately fire Jacobs. Then a little self-reflection may do this group some good.

MEMBERS OF THE UT BOARD OF TRUSTEES

Joe Zerbey (Chairman)—President and General Manager of The Blade
Dr. S. Amjad Hussain—Retired professor and frequent contributor to The Blade
Linda Mansour-Ismail—Attorney
Susan Farrell Palmer—Toledo Museum of Art
Sharon Speyer—Huntington Bank
John Szuch—Signature Bank
Gary Thieman—Medical Mutual

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Adding to what this post has highlighted, if any other large employer (I think UT is the 2nd or 3rd largest employer in Toledo) would have 800+ of its employees working without a contract, this would be BIG news. Somehow--probably because of Zerbey's association with UT--the fact that the university's faculty have been working without a contract for 3 years never gets publicized. If this happened to members of one of the City's unions, it would be printed daily in The Blade.

Also, what more does the Board need as proof of Jacobs' incompetence than he can't get a contract done?

Swamp, as we used to say way back when, Right On!

Patience is a great virtue.

How dare you talk about UT when there are dogs and court houses to save?

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