Southern Illinois University President Glenn Poshard says the Board of Trustees is getting tired of the bullying tactics of two of its members.
Poshard held a news conference Tuesday afternoon on the SIUC campus to respond to criticism by board members Don Lowery and Roger Herrin that his leadership is not effective and that he should step down as SIU President. Poshard says the intimidation goes beyond Lowery and Herrin and can be traced all the way to Governor Pat Quinn's office.
The Board of Trustees last week voted for John Simmons to replace Herrin as its chairman. Poshard says the governor's office called him and tried to force him to get board members to retain Herrin as the chairman. When he said no, Poshard claims the governor's representatives told him he and the non-conforming board members would be ousted in January.
Poshard says there is a sharp division within the board because of Lowery and Herrin's tactics of bullying, circumventing the board as a whole, trying to influence hiring decisions, and meddling in last year's faculty union negotiations. Poshard says he and chairman Simmons will be working to help unify the board in the coming months so the quality of the University will not be sacrificed.
Lowery and Herrin were appointed to the board last May by Governor Quinn. They are serving six-year terms.
Poshard's contract expires in 2015. He was installed as SIU President in November of 2005.