An archival of reader comments submitted to Watching Adams is stored here. The most recent comments are online here.
August 31, 2016 at 9:14am I have been working with adolescent children, many with behavior problems my whole professional career. Some of these kids are bullies and some of them are bullied but these kids are trying to grow into functioning and kind adults. Most usually make it. After observing some behaviors and actions from some of the faculty at Adams State University, I must say the adolescent kids I counsel and work with behave better that some of the educated professors at the University. I have observed sneaky and subliminal bullying such as exclusion, ignoring behaviors (to the point where some people wont even say hello in the hallways) and ageism. Shame on all of you who are behaving worse than troubled children and shame on the administration for allowing this to happen - E. Parkins
August 30, 2016 at 9:19pm Following up on the excellent To Kill a Mockingbird Post, I recently heard that Beverlee McClure and Arnold Salazar are on the Colorado State Police Watchlist due to their acts of terrorism. Oh wait, Danny would never print such a thing unless I acknowledge this is a joke, otherwise it would be libel and defamation of character. He's not the one who resorts to such low blows, that's the game McClure and Salazar play. Just trying to help people walk around in someone else's skin. Pretty much sucks. Leaders? Integrity? Conscience? I think not!
August 29, 2016 at 7:39pm Have you seen the Ledonne call-in video about the "police watch list?" It's sad and hilarious at the same time. Why would Beverley McClure lie to the entire campus in such a blatant way? No wonder pro-administration people are upset that her idiotic statements are being recorded! She's off the rails.
August 29, 2016 at 6:45pm Megan, you shouldn't and don't have to defend your professional career to this racist asshat. If this person is the typical Adams State administration supporter then there is no longer a way to have any type of intelligent discussion with them. I am so glad, again, that commentators can be anonymous because after reading the original bigoted comment, and then later doubling down, I could have gone to a very angry place and engaged in a special dance with this asshat. Your classiness and intelligence must really intimidate this person!
August 29, 2016 at 5:23pm So three individuals (Walter, Frank and Judy) were placed on administrative leave for a week, while an external investigator looked over the HLC debacle. The investigator has come and gone more than two weeks ago. One question: Is anybody EVER going to be held accountable for the HLC problems?!? ----Editor's Reply: Thank you for your inquiry. We have filed an open records request for any and all documents relating to this external audit of the Office of Extended Studies and will publish any findings here as soon as they are available.
August 29, 2016 at 5:08pm Alright, let's be honest here. Adams State has been mistreating many employees for a long time and most of them just leave because it's the easiest thing to do. This website exists because ASU finally mistreated the wrong person, a communications professor, who decided to do something about it. Some of you don't like that, and it's obvious why, but ASU has made so many enemies over the years that it was bound to happen. Maybe if you treated people better, they wouldn't have so much to complain about.
August 29, 2016 at 1:55pm "You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view... Until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it.” - Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird Try - however distasteful some of you may find it - to follow Harper Lee’s advice and place yourself in Danny Ledonne’s shoes for just a few minutes. Try to see the events of last year from his first-person perspective. You’ve been accused of some “crime” so great it warrants banning you from the Adams State campus. You are never informed of the crime you’ve been charged with, nor are you provided with any proper recourse to respond to the unspecified charges (impossible to do so). Is this feeling fair to you? It shouldn’t because it’s a constitutional violation that offends the rule of law. But the violation of your constitutional rights doesn’t end there. The “police” (Grohowski) and the “public prosecutor” (McClure) then go on a crazy spree smearing your reputation across the press and via campus email. As so many posters have stressed, they lied as they did so. So now we’re adding slander and libel on top of lack of due process. Starting to feel wronged yet? Feeling a bit indignant? You should but if not, stay with me a bit longer. After attacking you broadly in the press and via all-campus bulletins for some unspecified crime, McClure then decides to hold not one, but two broad campus forums to further defame you. In holding these meetings - “trials”, essentially - she acted as both prosecutor and judge, with your academic peers and students serving as your jury, all in absentia. You are now being tried, without your presence and without any opportunity to defend yourself. This is yet another violation of your right to due process: A criminal defendant’s right to appear in person at their trial is protected by multiple amendments of the U.S. Constitution (5th; 6th; 14th). Now imagine yourself sitting at home while these two trials in absentia are taking place. Imagine sitting on your couch at home trying to guess what is being said to your colleagues (and yes, they are still your professional colleagues, whether or not you still work at ASU) and your former students. Wouldn’t you want to know what was being said about you? More importantly, wouldn’t you deserve to know what was being said about you? “The one place where a man ought to get a square deal is in a courtroom, be he any color of the rainbow, but people have a way of carrying their resentments right into a jury box.” - Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird The individuals who recorded the Faculty Senate and AS&F meetings should be applauded for doing so. Gonna say that again, in caps: APPLAUDED. They were among the very few brave souls on this campus who recognized that a fellow citizen’s constitutional rights were being horribly violated. They recognized that if a fellow citizen was being denied the right to attend his own “trial”, he at least deserved to hear what was being said about him. The few brave souls who spoke out in Danny’s defense at those meetings were instantly labeled with their own “crimes”(sexism...seriously?!?). The individuals who sought to give Danny at least some semblance of an opportunity to be present at his own trial by recording it have also suffered slings and arrows. It’s never easy to do the right thing when you’re in the minority, to rise above the rabble (the true “cult”). But those who did know that Harper Lee was right: “…Before I can live with other folks I've got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn't abide by majority rule is a person's conscience.” – To Kill a Mockingbird I hope you gained new perspective by adopting Danny’s perspective for a few minutes. But I’m not holding my breath that you did, because: “People generally see what they look for, and hear what they listen for.” – - Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird
August 29, 2016 at 11:42am Inclusive Excellence, huh? You're included if you are part of the McClure choir, or even if you just keep your mouth shut. But if you say anything critical, ASU practices Exclusion Excellently.
August 29, 2016 at 11:27am Just as an FYI I was appointed into the Finance position as well as the Admissions position by the higher administration. Oh and what makes me qualified to work in higher education is that my first six months working in finance I wrote the narrative for East campus which brought to school $5.8 million. - Meagan Smith
August 29, 2016 at 10:52am A simple question: do people who support McClure simply not care that there is no such thing as a "Colorado police watch list?" She told everybody about it, but it doesn't exist.
August 29, 2016 at 8:29am Interesting comment yesterday: "Wonder why the Trustees don't help? Because you work for them, not the other way around. " Yes, I do wonder why the trustees protect a liar, deny her mistakes, care so little about civil rights, and know so little about ASU employees and students that they are perplexed when people are upset about this mess. At first I assumed McClure lied to the trustees just like everyone else and they weren't responsible enough to check on her "evidence." However, it is becoming clearer that the trustees knew her hand was empty and she was lying. Arnold Salazar, in particular, knew she was lying about the State Police watchlist, terrorism, and direct threats of violence. Worse than remaining silent, he backed her. He was sure he knew how to handle these stupid locals that might object to the ban. That makes it very clear why the trustees now protect McClure; they have to in order to protect their own asses. They are as culpable as McClure. You are correct that you trustees don't work for ASU employees. You work for the public and the students you are supposed to serve, not lie to and use.
August 28, 2016 at 11:05pm I thought higher education was about diverse ideas, supporting arguments with evidence, and respect for process and procedure. Reading these comments, it seems like Adams State University is one big popularity contest. It doesn't matter how well you're evaluated on your work. All that matters is whether or not certain people like you. No wonder I see so many photos on Facebook of the same administrators at all the lavish parties together. Adams State isn't about scholarship, it's about sucking up to some people and kicking everyone else down. I wouldn't recommend anyone send their students to a university that is run like a middle school playground.
August 28, 2016 at 10:48pm Let me get this right. Ledonne was not wanted by his peers (in your words) or did you mean ONE peer? So, it obviously follows that president McClure should lie to students,violate his civil rights, defame his character to silence him, and make light of real school shootings and real terrorism. And the Board of Trustees, particularly Arnold Salazar should condone this, or should I say promote it. OK, got it. If a few people in power don't like you, then laws don't matter at ASU. You speak from the heart, not from the brain, or the Constitution.
August 28, 2016 at 9:55pm "you came here as a minority and from the east, yet this university welcomed you, accepted you... I think you need a class in character, or in thankfulness, or in class itself." Holy shit dude! Did you actually think before hitting send? "Yes sah, thank you sah, you so good to all us lesser folk." What message are you sending to us minority students and students from places other than the SLV? What message are you sending to minority employees? We will be tolerated as long as we don't speak up? I think I'm going to puke... and transfer... and tell all my friends to avoid this hell whole. What next, the KKK in Alamosa? You should be thankful WatchingAdams is anonymous because you should be fired.
August 28, 2016 at 4:58pm As suspected, the editor has now admitted to tracking the IP address of participants of this forum. No transparency or safety here. Part of his next lawsuit? He'll huff and puff and deny but his last post response is too revealing. Trust this site no longer! ----Editor's Reply: IP addresses are logged by all WordPress sites as a standard feature for the contact form. In the event that a commentator does engage in unlawful conduct, IP address tracking is a necessary tool for involving law enforcement as necessary. Basically every site one uses online, from Gmail to Facebook, eBay to Amazon, tracks IP addresses as a necessary function of resolving data packets between host and user computers and verifying location information. What is done with this data is entirely up to the site admin. Given that this commentator repeatedly refers to current ASU employees, it seemed relevant to verify that this user is on the ASU computer network to post this message. You are certainly welcome to choose not to visit or post, though I highly doubt your distrust for this website has anything to do with IP addresses. Every ASU computer logs IP addresses as necessary to detect illegal activity like file sharing, child pornography, etc. This is not a unique practice and is actually expected of website administrators, complying with law enforcement requests to prevent cyber crime.
August 28, 2016 at 3:19pm I'm not sure my previous comment was understood by viewers and supporters of Ledonne (not surprise, they don't have brains anyway). I'll make my criticisms direct to the point from what I wrote on August 27, 2016 at 1:58pm. The big question really is this: how does Ledonne and his followers have any credit? Look at the facts. Ledonne was not wanted by his peers. Doesn't matter he got letters of support or people signed that silly petition. Anyone can get letters of support. Fact is, Ledonne's services (teaching, if you want to call it that), was not wanted. The library director lost a lot of trust by the campus for secretly recording meetings and egging this ordeal on. Even in her own crusade of dual careers, her husband did not meet expectations. Although Megan was active as a student, none of that was impressive either. What did Megan really do as a student trustee, BSU member, and such? Along with that, she has been reassigned to how many positions already? She is incompetent, not fit to do anything here (evidence by being reassigned to different jobs), and has no business in higher education. If Megan Smith is really that good, why has she changed positions so much? I have no idea why she is even employed here, other than maybe she has something on someone, otherwise, she's become a waste of space, like many others. Others in the Ledonne camp are just as underwhelming with their slimy ways of not doing anything. The way I see it, with as much noise as Ledonne and his cult made about last Friday's march that didn't happen, and all the news sources that were supposed to cover it (yet, no news was even in sight), don't they all have strong records of being liars as well? Worst thing that they people can do is journey on their their fruitless crusade. You all proven yourself useless, unwanted, and unfit to be in higher ed. ----Editor's Reply: Ledonne was broadly recognized in four years of student evaluations, teaching evaluations, and classroom observations as being an effective and engaging educator. No official record at ASU or otherwise contradicts his teaching effectiveness. His faculty lectures were always well-attended and well-received. His longtime department chair, who best knew his work, has favorably recommended him and even provided testimony during the court hearing. These are the metrics available and utilized to evaluate teaching and these metrics reflect favorably on Ledonne's teaching career. From coast to coast, Ledonne has also taught at many other institutions and has developed and implemented coursework with acclaim for many programs from primary school youth to older adults. For someone in their early career, the record of publication and coursework on his CV is more than sufficient to demonstrate teaching effectiveness. It is because of these qualifications that Ledonne began to inquire into ASU's hiring practices to begin with. The ASU Mass Comm position continues to rotate in Ledonne's absence. Just an example: How many TV stations are in Alamosa? Are there usually TV trucks driving around town getting stories? To my reading, the march organizers contacted the press but aren't themselves responsible for hiring camera crews to drive from Colorado Springs or further to cover a story in Alamosa. Contacting the press to cover an event isn't “lying” simply because cash-strapped news outlets don't arrive at the scene. ASU has and will continue to receive news coverage on these issues, just check the Press Page for updates. This commentator persists in the kind of vitriol that is the hallmark of ASU – a university that smiles publicly while scowling and deriding anyone who is willing to speak up for their causes or concerns. An anonymous forum is a good way to illustrate just how much of this thinking exists – and all from an IP address on the Adams State ISP. Bonafide hostility towards divergent views exists at ASU and one needs to look no further to find it. This is what cyberbullying actually looks like – with an intellectual framework so limited that the subject matter is reduced to the petty insults of other people who hold a different perspective. What a curious way to spend a Sunday afternoon in Alamosa.
August 28, 2016 at 2:14pm The last comment is amusing but not very well informed. Here are a few points to consider: 1. ASU faculty almost all teach 4-5 classes per semester, much more than many universities in which 2-3 course loads are the norm. And all faculty do much more than teach the number of contact hours. They must prepare their coursework, grade student papers and projects, advise students, serve on committees, research, write and publish in their fields, and many are now being asked to do marketing and promotion of their university. Many faculty who have taught elsewhere say they have never worked harder, or been paid less, than at ASU. 2. Adjunct faculty, who now teach the majority of courses at universities, generally do not have health insurance provided by their employer and do not have any retirement plan. This has been widely reported and is known as the “Walmartization of Higher Education.” And even full time faculty often don't have it much better. At ASU, I've known many professors who, because of the student loans they took in order to earn their PhD, struggle to pay their bills. Many qualify for public assistance even as they are perceived as “college hot shots.” 3. According to compensation data from a nationwide analysis, faculty at ASU are paid around 75% of what their peers make in the same positions. However, there are many administrators at ASU who make 100% or more of their own peers at other schools. It's the Golden Rule – they who write the rules get the most gold. 4. Indeed, many ASU faculty are walking out and quitting – that's why we are trying to communicate why this keeps happening. There are many positions at ASU that they cannot keep filled. The cost of searching for and hiring new candidates is a highly inefficient process that costs the institution in many ways – most notably lower retention of students who no longer have the faculty they count on to teach them. 5. Higher wages, benefits, and improved working conditions are never given from on high by benevolent administrators or trustees. They are earned by workers who organize and demonstrate for improvements. This is the history of all labor movements in the USA and many more abroad. It's happening around the country and it should be happening at ASU. 6. Public education belongs to the people, not to the trustees. All ASU employees ultimately work for the taxpayers of Colorado and of the United States. No one at ASU is guaranteed their position – including the board of trustees.
August 28, 2016 at 11:18am You college hot shots are really something. Ever spend 12 hours on a tractor? You teach 12 hours a week and complain about overwork. The rest of the time you spend sitting in meetings in million dollar buildings. You have health insurance, retirement funds, and you're paid more than most of this valley. But you're victims? Whaaaaaaaaaaaaawwwww! Crybabies. You've been mistreated. Whaaaaaaaaaawwwwwwwwwwwww. Grow some backbone. If people treat you "bad" walk out and quit and go somewhere else. Wonder why the Trustees don't help? Because you work for them, not the other way around. And most of them earn their living in jobs where they have to produce or be fired. Your little whiner group can keep up the unrest but many of us in the community will tell the trusties to take the college back from you and keep it in the hands of those who support it.
August 27, 2016 at 10:29pm "Danny lost a position that was basically his to have for a while. His peers did not want to continue to work with him." So why did so many people, including faculty and staff, write him letters of recommendation and sign his letter of support? He posted all that before and shared his teaching evaluations and student evaluations with the Board of Trustees. I notice that all the videos he made and the lectures he gave are still on the ASU website. Funny how people want to change history after-the-fact. Man, ASU sure knows how to throw people under the bus and then try to sell you a ticket.
August 27, 2016 at 9:24pm Let me be more than clear that I appreciate every opportunity that Adams State is giving me and the San Luis Valley community. Adams State has taught me that when you make an argument you support it with research and evidence. We responded to Danny situation with no evidence boo-boo. Which made us as University and this community look crazy. My mission is to protect what this university is truly about and not be involved in petty drama. I have my evidence of what I brought to this institution and I hope everybody else has theirs. let's go grizzlies. - Meagan Smith
August 27, 2016 at 9:02pm I'm from the Midwest get that right first. During my seven years here I've assisted with many organizations the Black Student Union, The the Student Trustee position AS&F. Adams State didn't come find me I found Adams State and meanwhile I've been doing all of this as a single parent . I was the first African-American to be hired in the professional staff in 2013. There should've been others before me . I have dealt with many stresses and had some of the worst health issues since beginning my positions at Adams State as staff . This mostly has been caused by stresses of unprofessional situations and being mistreated . I'm speaking out against treating people wrong which is not what Adams State is about . It's time for us to unite as one not on Danny side or any other but to bleed green like were supposed to. All this could've been solved by having a simple sit down . And now we're going to the mattresses . Anybody that has anything to say to me show your name or call me or text me 708-207-3009 So we can talk. - Meagan Smith
August 27, 2016 at 6:48pm "Meagan Smith, you came here as a minority and from the east, yet this university welcomed you, accepted you, taught you, celebrated with you as you took student leadership positions, and then hired you." In addition to being bone-headed, this comment is bigoted and racist. Why should it matter where someone comes from or their ethnicity in order to be accepted ASU? "Inclusive excellence" is evidently nonsense at ASU.
August 27, 2016 at 4:55pm The previous comment attacking Meagan Smith is profoundly revealing about ASU on several levels. Meagan expressed her support for Danny Ledonne and mentioned the many students of color that miss having Ledonne as their professor. Well, it seems this is forbidden in the dysfunctional campus climate of ASU because Ledonne has become a public and vocal critic of what he believes are wrongdoings by the administration, many of which are well-documented and undisputed. This is called “guilt by association” and ASU is rampant with these toxic cliques and harmful nepotism. So making a statement supporting Ledonne is to “speak and protest against us - your own employer.” But who is “us?” ASU is a public university that belongs to the taxpayers of Colorado. Anyone can and should be free to speak about government programs and those who run them, including their employees. What kind of repressive regime shames and punishes people for engaging in free expression? There is only one way to talk about ASU and anything else must be suppressed and anyone who does must be vilified. Parents, students, alumni, and the Higher Learning Commission – take note. This is what retaliation against anyone who steps forward at ASU looks like. And that is why this institution is failing its students, employees, and community.
August 27, 2016 at 4:23pm Meagan Smith, you came here as a minority and from the east, yet this university welcomed you, accepted you, taught you, celebrated with you as you took student leadership positions, and then hired you. Now you speak and protest against us - your own employer? I think you need a class in character, or in thankfulness, or in class itself.
August 27, 2016 at 2:50pm To the commenter who mentioned a former student who did not graduate, FERPA violation! If you are a faculty member, why would any decent parent send their child to Adams to be abused in such a manner and endure federal violations of individual student rights, right Beez?
August 27, 2016 at 2:46pm So let me get this straight: if you speak out at ASU, you'll be bullied and shunned or even defamed and banned. If you don't speak out at ASU, you're a coward and a hypocrite. Got it. Just what young adults need to be learning in our society today.
August 27, 2016 at 1:58pm What happened to the demonstration yesterday? All these people so enthusiastic about it, but then nothing happens. Are we surprised by this? I, for one, am not. Ledonne and his camp claim they are working to be activists for what is right, but cannot even put on a demonstration. I absolutely can't wait to hear their sorry justifications as to why it didn't happen. How I know they are a bunch of cowards, hypocrites, and can't let things go (this all resorts back to Danny losing his position and inability to move on. call it what it truly is). If this "walk" was actually a legit event, why wasn't any of the press there? They claim to have contacted all of these news sources, but none were present. Even the local paper wasn't present to cover it. So, are they all liars now? Claiming things that actually didn't happen? This all has become beyond pathetic. Move on with your sad lives. In the same light, it still amazes me how people continue to back Ledonne and his cult. These people are not credible. Danny lost a position that was basically his to have for a while. His peers did not want to continue to work with him. He's no champion or fit to be a professor teaching students. Ledonne's "inner circle" of people like Carol Smith has lost a lot of credibility by secretly recording meetings to filter it back to him. No wonder why she has lost a lot of credibility on this campus. Megan Smith didn't even finish her degree, and has been reassigned because she is basically incompetent to do anything here. She's fooling no one. Others are also losing their credibility as time goes on, because at the basic root of the problem, Ledonne is wrong. I can't wait for him to disappear. I doubt my previous comments will be published on here, because apparently the truth means nothing anymore. ----Editor's Reply: The march organizers can speak for themselves if they'd like, but it was clear when multiple sets of posters were removed from the walls that the ASU campus remains a hostile and repressive climate for free speech. News outlets have and continue to report on this topic, though those with financial interests directly bound up in ASU are unlikely to do so in a critical manner. This is why Watching Adams fills a necessary space in the SLV information economy. In reading the comments about the march, no one promised helicopters circling the skies – perhaps these are the delusional fantasies of projection? Others have commented here by saying: “I thought about going to the march today but by the fact that no one showed up is proof that, we employees, are fearful for our jobs. If people, on the campus, can't even leave posters up without getting all butt hurt and tearing them down then there's no way a person could march without retaliation and discrimination from the administration and fellow colleagues.” Think about the kinds of grievances this comment brought up. They are upset not that President McClure claimed Ledonne was on a “police watch list” that doesn't exist or claimed that Ledonne made “threats of violence” and “direct and indirect threats” which were flatly false and so unproven that the campus ban was lifted without any actual proceedings related to “campus safety” - the purported grounds for these adverse actions. The administration has now spent more time clarifying the financial settlement than any concern about campus safety – which is altogether telling. This commentator is upset that these statements by a university president in all-campus meetings were recorded. They are advocating a university that tries individuals who step out of line in absentia, behind closed doors, and without evidence or due process. Does this sound like a healthy university campus to anyone? This commentator also continues to attack those they attempt to associate with Ledonne in an effort to discredit anyone who might possibly represent a dissenting view, particularly those who may even support Ledonne – a true act of heresy in a repressive campus environment. ASU has clearly stated that dissent will not be tolerated and the campus culture has clearly demonstrated a commitment to this end on a consistent basis. Despite finding multiple problems with the faculty search committee process, application scoresheets, and an OEO office that refused to meet with him after being previously assured the office would remain open for his case, Ledonne has moved on and continues to produce media and publish in his field. But unlike most who have left Adams State (in growing numbers), Ledonne remains committed to maintaining a publication that gives others a voice on a campus that passively and actively suppresses free speech. Apparently, he is also committed to creating a platform for, and publishing, even disparaging comments about him. Unlike those who rip posters for public assembly from the walls of an institution of higher education, Ledonne believes in the First Amendment and a diversity of views in a pluralistic society.
August 27, 2016 at 9:27am Be careful or you too will be retaliated against. It happened to me at a previous employer. I spoke out publicly against management and the abuse of power and I was let go. We do not have freedom of speech! In ways, it was a blessing to be terminated from my previous job. I no longer was abused by a horrible boss. Situations in life work themselves out. Maybe those individuals fed up with ASU administration will exit and Adams will have no choice, but to have an intense look at the infectious hell they have tolerated. Then action will be necessary. After I was terminated from my job, the board fired management and started over. Keep making noise, keep pushing. Don't let fear of retaliation stop you from speaking, especially if abuse of power is happening. Because eventually, someone will listen. Someone will take action
August 26, 2016 at 7:36pm Do you know what really kills me ? Is these professors that have been here for so many years and just now claim to support under represented students. If they were true and in their professions and they would have supported underrepresented students throughout their careers . They should not have needed a mission statement or a strategic plan to do so . So I will sit back and watch to see what is actually implemented and what is just for show . It is time for our administration to request results within the year . Who have they retained, who have they not retained, and why? - Meagan Smith
August 26, 2016 at 5:24pm Click on the link from a previous post that shows Ledonne with a settlement check. Take a close look. Notice who wrote the check -- it is not Adams State. Salazar was right, ASU didn't pay him a single dime. The ACLU did. Granted, ASU wrote a check to the ALCU to cover its legal fees. What the ACLU did with the money is a matter between the ACLU and its client. ----Editor's Reply: Actually, even the check that the ACLU received was not from ASU but from Hanover Insurance Company. I suppose these financial semantics are important to someone out there, but no press outlet saw this detail as relevant enough to mention it.
August 26, 2016 at 4:46pm As a faculty who has worked at other universities, I am amazed at what people at ASU are willing to put up with. Your administration lies to you repeatedly, underpays you and overworks you. People try to organize a march and their posters are removed. Your university only graduates 1 in 5 students every four years. And that's to say nothing of the quality of the academic programs which is now under review. Yet apparently everything is great, only getting better and the institution is somehow so successful that they “win” lawsuits that they clearly didn't.
August 26, 2016 at 4:15pm A childish attempt by self-serving people to tear our university down." Think about that for just one second before hitting 'send' next time, cos it makes no sense. Why would "self-serving" people want to tear our university down? If the university goes, we all lose our jobs, including the "self-serving". How is that self serving? On the other hand, the self-deluded think that if they just suck it up and swallow hard, then somehow, by magic, the university's declining fortunes will suddenly reverse. The only way to fix something is to admit mistakes, identify problems, put on our thinking caps and work out real solutions. The real "self-serving" are those who hunker down with their fingers in their ears, who are not prepared to examine their, and the institution's, performance. It is they who will cause ASU to come tumbling down.
August 26, 2016 at 4:14pm I for one am not surprised that students didn't show up to march at ASU today. Faculty struggle to get students to attend any event on campus, and this one had no campus support, had the posters repeatedly torn down, and was a challenge to an administration that has ruled by fear and lies on issue after issue. These aren't students who feel supported or empowered to demonstrate on any issue, even when their school is on put probation, their professors are leaving in droves, the university's finances are shoddy, and the list goes on and on. Yet students are on Yik Yak asking about hooking up, partying, and where to score some Ritalin. There are deeper cultural problems at ASU when the campus life is this comatose, sleepwalking off the cliff.
August 26, 2016 at 4:10pm Leadership. While President McClure and the Trustees (and the rest of us) were conducting the work of the university, some of you tried to organize a walk. A walk. You talked and wrote and posted signs and insulted and blustered and threatened for days on end. But when the time came you stood with your thumbs up your butts and couldn't organize a "walk." You criticize others but evidently have neither the brains nor stones to lead a silent prayer. A walk? You heroes couldn't get it done. I respect you less now than when I merely disagreed with you.
August 26, 2016 at 3:31pm This institution is doomed. The cancerous tumor is to large and embedded for a recovery. When you have the leader of the Trustees saying ignorant statements such as "Ledonne didn't receive a single dime of the money" and then a person can click on a link and it shows Danny holding a check made out to him for over $62K. WTF, are these people so egotistical that they can't tell the truth, have they been watching the election to much and have decided that since Hillary is a lying crook that it's justified for them to lie or are they just plum stupid? I thought about going to the march today but by the fact that no one showed up is proof that, we employees, are fearful for our jobs. If people, on the campus, can't even leave posters up without getting all butt hurt and tearing them down then there's no way a person could march without retaliation and discrimination from the administration and fellow colleagues. Adams State University, where great futures are ruined. Good job Richardson Hall, you all ought to be ashamed of yourselves.
August 26, 2016 at 2:53pm A childish attempt by self-serving people to tear our university down. The rest of us will continue to do our work and strive to improve a really good school.
August 26, 2016 at 2:35pm Meanwhile, back at ASU, nothing has changed. The liar is still drawing on her almost-quarter million bucks package, Arnold is still in charge of the trustees who support the liar, and ASU's reputation and fortunes keep on sliding. A victory for everyone. Let's celebrate!!!
August 26, 2016 at 2:27pm I went, but saw no group, just a few other students looking around nervously. Too much fear among my friends. My stomach was in knots just walking over there. Today's piece in the CollegeFix was pretty ugly for ASU and more is on the way. I've spoken with reporters from three other newspapers. The fact that the leader of the board claimed to be perplexed (it's not like ASU is Kent State...) is good reason to remove him.
August 26, 2016 at 1:37pm Where were all those media helicopters we were promised flying over the library, the newspaper reporters coming out in droves, the swarm of television cameras...and the hundreds of protesters marching!? Wait, what? Oh, no, not a peep, not a sound! Salazar was there because he is not a narcissist, cyber bullying, coward! The end. Meanwhile back at ASU...
August 26, 2016 at 1:32pm Try contacting national media. NBC, CBS, ABC, FOX, MSNBC........you never know. It only takes one to show an interest. I agree, this needs to be expanded to the board and not just McClure. The board was asleep at the wheel for years under Svaldi, and now they are enabling McClure. A fish rots from the head down. Arnold Salazar is another neo-fascist who must be removed.
August 26, 2016 at 1:24pm I think the focus needs to switch from McClure, who is clueless and helpless, and move on to the board. Pressure the governor to clean house. ARNOLD MUST GO! Too many Salazars are in positions of power in SLV anyway. Pressure the governor to find an outside (outside Colorado) assessment group to study ASU, administration, the board, finances, and report findings.
August 26, 2016 at 12:34pm Went by the library at 12:00 p.m. No one was there. I only saw Mr. Salazar.
August 26, 2016 at 10:36am Even Ryan Lochte, the USA gold medalist swimmer and world-class narcissist, who made up a story about being held at gunpoint in Brazil, has apologized for lying. Why can’t Beverley McClure, ASU’s gold class diva, apologize for making up stories about LeDonne “terrorising” her? Why is admitting a mistake so hard for her? What is wrong with her?
August 26, 2016 at 9:30am Dear Arnold, Open and honest conversations start with a president who doesn't lie to the world.
August 26, 2016 at 9:02am I agree wholeheartedly with ASU Board of Trustees chair, Arnold Salazar, when he says that “protests should be about something more important that someone’s narcissistic fantasies.” Indeed, the narcissist who fantasized about LeDonne being a “terrorist”, and who led ASU to a $100,000 legal trouncing because she could not provide a single scrap of evidence to support her fantasy, should have been fired long before honest people were forced to protest her mendacity. Arnold goes on to say that “the settlement [against ASU] was a way for us to refocus our attention on what exactly is important.” So, Arnold, what exactly is important to you? You are okay supporting a president who is a proven liar? You are okay with a president who believes she has the right to slander anyone who she fantasises as being a threat, even if it costs ASU money and reputation? Or do you believe the most important thing is to protect the status quo? Nothing else matters. We must get back to normal. We must not have staff and faculty bother their pretty little heads about such matters as honesty and integrity? So there we have it, from the horse’s mouth. Confirmed! The rot goes all the way to the top.
August 26, 2016 at 7:55am It is so reassuring to see that Arnold Salazar is a compassionate man with high moral standards. In ASU's official statement about their board meeting, he says shooting us isn't OK with him. However, it IS apparently OK with him to lie to us, use us, stomp on our right to free speech, ban citizens from campus unconstitutionally, and slander citizens (police watchlist, terrorism). No real harm there. No wonder the dude is perplexed.
August 26, 2016 at 6:22am Hilarious, the College Fix headline says it all: Public university perplexed by march against president for calling professor a terrorist I am perplexed that they are perplexed! Also, ASU Board Chair Arnold Salazar says "plaintiff was not paid one dime" which is TRUE! The plaintiff was paid about 642,895 dimes in the form of a check!
August 25, 2016 at 9:43pm Is anyone really surprised that ASU lied about Ledonne not receiving payment as part of the ACLU settlement? ASU lied about “winning” as well as so many details about the case itself – like Ledonne being a “threat to campus safety” and being on a “state police watch list.” This is the “pattern of behavior” that keeps students and employees from trusting the ASU administration.
August 25, 2016 at 6:56pm Which building had all the fliers torn down? If it was McDaniel then I suspect the culprit was Crowther from History. He is in the hip pocket of administration.
August 25, 2016 at 6:11pm As the parent of an ASU student, the president's actions make me sick: lying, bullying, squashing free speech, using students, making light of school shootings. These are not things I want at my daughter's school or from her school's leader. I wish she had chosen another college to get her degree and I hope she joins your march tomorrow. I would if I could. ----Editor's Reply: As an ASU parent, please consider communicating your concerns directly with the Board of Trustees, the CO Governor's Office, and/or the Higher Learning Commission. Yes, as a parent I have already written to the Governor via his website. Good suggestion about HLC. I'll do that tomorrow. As for the Board, it sounds like they are part of the problem, so I won't bother. ----Editor's Reply: You might also consider writing an open letter to any publication from the SLV Valley Courier to your local paper to make your concerns known to other parents and prospective students.
August 25, 2016 at 4:30pm "Used" is a perfect word for what McClure did. Using an imaginary threat of a school shooting as pretense for banning Ledonne is disrespectful to every student, teacher, and staff member who died during actual school shootings. McClure, Salazar, and the rest have no conscience. In addition to using ASU students, they dishonor true victims and their families.
August 25, 2016 at 3:27pm Free speech is being crushed at ASU. All the posters for the march were torn down, at least in the building where I had classes today. That's dozens of them. Clear message: don't dare express unpopular opinions or speak up for yourself or others. It's clear that losing the ACLU lawsuit taught ASU leaders nothing... bogus press releases, trying to stop the march...
August 25, 2016 at 11:43am Danny I am so sorry that there were so many negative comments regarding the settlement at today's Trustee meeting. Had I known I would have prepared something on your behalf. I had to leave because I felt more than uncomfortable, which I have never felt before. I feel like a large piece is missing from Adams State with you not teaching on campus. There are so many students from the African American community at ASU that have reached out to me with concern. They very much enjoyed having you as their professor, and found what you taught them beneficial. I feel that you were a true piece in what helped us retain and graduate diverse students. Which is our mission as an institution. All of this drama and disruption of our ASU community brought me to tears today. The part of the meeting where it was said that you had not received a check from the settlement was, for lack of a better word, bogus. Thank you for all that you do. For supporting me and many diverse students. Meagan Danyelle Smith Former Student Trustee, Black Student Union Advisor, Admission Counselor (Not a coward) ----Editor's Reply: thank you for your support! I did in fact receive a check for the settlement. As stated in the Valley Courier by ACLU legal director Mark Silverstein, I was paid about $65,000, which is the standard percentage after attorney's fees.
August 25, 2016 at 10:07am Standing Strong for an Apology When: Friday, August 26th, 12:00 noon Start: In front of Nielsen Library Come, tell your friends, bring a friend! Purpose: To force president McClure and the Board of Trustees to come clean by admitting McClure lied to students, employees, and the community about Danny Ledonne. She lied to us when she said Ledonne was on a “Colorado State Police Watch List” (AS&F meeting) and he made “direct and indirect threats against individuals” (email to all students) and many more lies. She needs to admit Danny Ledonne was never a threat to anyone in order to clear his name and restore his reputation. The president must apologize to everyone she lied to and used by claiming she was acting to ensure our safety. The president must apologize to Danny Ledonne. President McClure not only lied to us, she used us like pawns in her twisted games by claiming the Ledonne ban was for “our safety.” She and the board treated us like children, assuming we would believe whatever they told us. We will show them they were wrong. We paid attention to their unethical games and now we will make ourselves heard. President McClure should resign. How could anyone trust her after she lied to us and used us? If she won’t resign, the Board should fire her. If the Board won’t fire her, they should be fired. Standing Strong for Truth, Free Speech, Ledonne’s Reputation
August 24, 2016 at 8:18pm Hey Students: Do you know what President McClure and the Board of Trustees fear? YOU! You pay the bills, you call the shots. You have them scared as hell. That's why fliers were torn down and thrown in the trash today. The idea of a march and media coverage terrifies them. They may be in the official positions of power, but they have no power over you in this situation. The press wants to know what you think. They want you to be heard. Professors, staff, and citizens can speak up, but many are afraid, and your voice is much more important. In spite of the fear from my job, I'll be there with you! Spread the word. Put up more fliers. I've had enough and I'm guessing many of you have as well.
August 24, 2016 at 4:31pm More and more ASU is coming across as a modern Soviet Union. I guess that makes Beverlee Stalin? Those who post the fliers, sign petitions, march and demonstrate shall be relocated to education reformation in Siberia.
August 24, 2016 at 3:27pm So much for Free Speech at Adams State! We posted fliers yesterday afternoon and many have already been taken down. I don't know who thinks this is OK or not a violation of the First Amendment, but they are wrong. Those bulletin boards contain adds for tattoo shops and the Christian Mind, but issues at ASU aren't fair game? No way. You are stepping on our rights. Print fliers and put them up, hand them out. Don't let whoever did this silence us. WE WILL BE HEARD!
August 22, 2016 at 10:10pm As our group wrote previously, Friday's march is "not all about Danny" and he is the first one to agree. Tonight we invited him and he declined, saying "its probably best if I am not there to keep the focus on the people McClure lied to over and over" and other issues that go beyond his story. This is about a better ASU. Let's take lots of pictures and lots of video. WatchingAdams and other news sources will be happy to use them. The interest from the press is growing daily.
August 22, 2016 at 9:04pm 17 Faculty departed?? 18% of our faculty?? I am left without words. Are those positions be filled this year? WHO is taking over the Nursing Dept? Do we know why these professors have chosen to leave of their own accord? Did we conduct an exit interview? How can we retain our students if we are unable (or unwilling?) to retain our faculty? More importantly - is ASU willing to admit that to solve our student retention problem we must fix (identify/ recognize) our faculty retention problem? So many questions and ASU administration is radio silent. ----Editor's Reply: We researched the practice of exit interviews at ASU for ASU Throws Its Own People Down the Memory Hole and it does not appear that this practice has been implemented in many years now. Exit interviews also presume that ASU administration actually wants to consider and address the issues that have driven away so many faculty and staff in the past decade.
August 22, 2016 at 9:02pm The buck stops with the Board of Trustees and their Chair, Arnold Salazar. You condoned the violations of Ledonne's Constitutional rights. You accepted and backed McClure's lies. You refused to right her wrongs, even after losing the ACLU lawsuit. Time to step down and make room for someone with integrity. Let's review the names of the Board members who will be here for the march this Friday: Arnold Salazar, Kathleen Rogers, Paul Farley, Michele Lueck, Wendell Pryor, LeRoy Salazar, Cleave Simpson, John Singletary, Randy Wright. People who apparently have no conscience. WE WILL BE HEARD!!!
August 22, 2016 at 7:31pm Hmmmmm I just sat down to email my thoughts to the president of ASU but her homepage on the Adams site does not list an email address. Does all email have to go through James? Am I missing something? Does the president need a filter? ----Editor's Reply: President McClure's email can be found on various documents throughout this site, such as the HLC Evaluation Summary Sheet.
August 22, 2016 at 7:09pm In addition to the march, I recommend a petition be started stating that Beverleeeeeee should resign, and if not be fired, and if not the board be fired. There is time before Friday to create the petition and start getting it signed. Friday all the marchers who have not signed it can. How about a petition in addition to the march?
August 22, 2016 at 6:05pm I second the most recent comment: MARCH and BE HEARD! Administration can't do anything to students for exercising their rights. We pay the bills, period. Another newspaper has expressed their intent to publish an article about the march. But get this... two newspapers now plan to run additional articles related to the events leading to the march. Not just events involving Ledonne. Change is coming and we are making it happen. We hold the power! Don't just march, spread the word, tell your friends, post it on FB, print the flier posted here and stick it to an ASU bulletin board... You can't be punished for any of these actions.
August 22, 2016 at 5:22pm I understand that McClure is a nasty bully, threatening anyone who dares to dissent. I understand that no one really wants to risk their job, their livelihood. Students tend to fear (unreasonably) administration (There really is nothing they can do to you for exercising your constitutional rights). But I implore you to march Friday. Do not just silently allow this megalomaniac to run roughshod over you. Contrary to whatever spin Beverleeeeeeee wants to spew, DANNY AND THE ACLU WON! Lying, manipulative, deceitful Beverlee and her Reich LOST. Stand up. Be counted. Take a frigging stand.
August 22, 2016 at 9:01am As a former employee of Adams, may I say what a joy this website and news source is. I too have a story that I may share one day. In the meantime, it thrills me to read disclosures on a small-minded, limited-vision, crony-driven administration that really needs a trip to the public woodshed on a regular basis. There were many fine folks at Adams when I was there and I am sure there are some dedicated individuals meeting the needs of students. However, a public serving institution must be accountable. Long live Watching Adams! You can run, but you can't hide.
August 22, 2016 at 8:31am Lots of people are focused on McClure's lying, and rightfully so, but let's not miss the bigger picture. In one year at ASU (and prior), McClure has established her modus operandi: 1. Poor decisions (violating Ledonne's Constitutional rights, HLC response, guaranteed tuition) 2. Denial when mistakes are pointed out 3. Lying to EVERYONE to cover her mistakes 4. Using ANYONE to get her way and save face ("students' / campus safety") 5. Willingness to lie about and destroy others to get her way and save face ("terrorism", "watchlist") 6. Spinning her mistakes to the press with more lies (ACLU settlement, HLC probation, Moody's downgrade) It's not that real leaders don't make mistakes, but REAL LEADERS put the organization first, recognize mistakes quickly, take responsibility without blaming others, and fix them before they become even more embarrassing and costly. McClure is no leader. She is more concerned with her image than the best interests of ASU, its students and employees. Therefore, she is more than willing to sacrifice the latter for her own good. Beverlee McClure: the real threat to ASU. Students: march, march, MARCH!
August 22, 2016 at 8:05am The new article about how president McClure lied over and over covers only the tip of the iceberg. To add just a few: - her claim that her thick file was full of evidence = NOT! - her claim in press releases that she could now share all the damning evidence against Ledonne = NEVER HAPPENED - ASU's claim that they had prevailed and the judge had ruled in their favor in the ACLU lawsuit = PURE FANTASY Liars! And now advisers from other colleges are telling their students to avoid ASU. Her lies cost all of us in dollars, enrollment, and reputation. It's just sickening.
August 21, 2016 at 2:20pm Why did Paul Grohowski resign as police chief? He had received positive recognition for his work and had only been here a year and a half. Is it pure coincidence that he resigned a few weeks after the ACLU case settled, when ASU claimed it had "won" and of course did nothing wrong even though their insurance company paid $100,000 and they lifted the ban on Danny Ledonne? Students, faculty, and staff should demand answers. After all, this has all been for "their safety!"
August 19, 2016 at 9:50pm Following up on the "it's not all about Ledonne" thread. Folks are absolutely correct, it's not all about Danny and it SHOULD NOT be all about Danny. Danny is the first person to say that. He and everyone else following WatchingAdams just want to see a better ASU, one that does a better job of taking care of its students and employees. Many people have their own stories about the problems at ASU and they are all important because we know there is a long history here that doesn't come down to just one bad apple in administration. However, the ACLU lawsuit and associated discovery process did two things: made ASU's problems widely visible and revealed irrefutable evidence that president McClure lied to the public and used students & employees' safety as an excuse. Other cases are not so cut-and-dried. When they treat people unfairly, the administration likes to hide behind the "there are things no one knows about" line. This time they were caught red-handed. The evidence is clear and the case has visibility that would have disappeared without the march. Now is the time for change!
August 19, 2016 at 9:41pm Alex Morey, the editor-in-chief of FIRE (Foundation for Individual Rights in Education), responded to our mail: "In regards to the planned march next Friday, please encourage anyone—staff or student—who gets in trouble with the administration in connection with the march to contact us immediately via our case-submission portal (https://www.thefire.org/resources/submit-a-case/). We keep information or documents provided to us confidential unless given permission otherwise. Provided marchers are outside in a public space, they should take lots of pictures and record any encounters." Keep the emails to the press coming! WE WILL BE HEARD!
August 19, 2016 at 9:15am For those of you who support president McClure so vigorously, I have one question: did she lie to you? Recall that she called a special session of Faculty Senate and told everyone that Ledonne was on a Colorado State Police watch list. Grohowski was there. Five days later, with plenty of time to correct their story, McClure appeared at the AS&F meeting where she said the same thing. When a student senator suggest no such list exists and asked, "Can you show us that this watchlist exists?", she claimed she had a copy of it in Ledonne's file. If that's not intentional lying, I don't know what is. Certainly not harmless lies either. I understand why students intend to march.
August 18, 2016 at 10:23pm In grad school, I was lucky to have a mentor who cared about my education. He demonstrated that by coming to school with new arguments to challenge my thinking, even if he didn't believe the arguments. He told us the story of two very famous profs who argued in the journals for years in spite of the fact that they came from the same department. He summed it up: "they were lucky to have each other." Having one's ideas challenged is very healthy. Perhaps that's why ASU has been quite sick for many years. The strangle hold of the "if you don't like it, then leave" administration killed meaningful discussion. Looks like some of us are still asleep at the wheel or just complacent with playing follow-the-leader. I talk to my students every semester about the value of (reasoned) argument and encourage them to speak up if they have counter-examples or don't agree with what I say. Those comments can bloom into the most productive of discussions.
August 18, 2016 at 9:47pm I don't know...but here's a thought...perhaps things are "spun" on this site as "negative" because they are in fact NEGATIVE. This institution is simply a hell hole for more than not. You're good if you're drinking the kool aid. If not...well ya know! And it truly is a shame. There is so much Adams has to offer. Excellent faculty (except those who are leaving in droves); stellar administrators who can assist (well most are marginalized to the point of irrelevance); and a desire on students' parts to be here (except that nasty declining enrollment since Dr Mumper stepped down). Damn pesky facts!
August 18, 2016 at 9:36pm It's interesting to me that some are so quick to criticize LaDonne and his "followers" ( as if we are minions); call out individuals in such a demeaning, hateful manner ("yes you Carol Smith" comment); and "demand" the shut down (i.e. Shut down of freedom of speech) of this website because...someone doesn't like it? Finds it threatening? Dislikes the true reason the academy exists ( do you even have a CLUE?). Seriously? Someone disagrees with you and you become an ass (as if you aren't already). If you don't believe in the fundamentals of our constitution and bill of rights...get the "f" out of this country. YOU ARE THE PROBLEM! Respectfully...or do we need to define that word for you?!?
August 18, 2016 at 5:40pm Is it me, or does it seem like everytime something happens at ASU, this site, Ledonne, and his pathetic followers are going to show it in a negative light? Evidence: the recent resignation of the police chief report on this site. Ledonne and others claim the president has been on a "witch hunt" against them, but aren't they pretty much doing the same in trying to discredit anything possible at ASU? I am certainly not convinced that Ledonne and his followers (yes, you Carol Smith and other followers), have a brain in your head. For people like Ledonne who claim to be victimized by the president, you are certainly victimizing and hurting others with your silly reports and website. Time to shut it down and move on with your sad lives. ----Editor's Reply: It isn't just you, it's one of the design goals of this site to cover these events. Having just checked the ASU News and homepage, we found nothing about the resignation of the police chief. The university has not made this development public. While it parades everything from a drug bust on campus to the acquisition of new police vehicles on its website, it says nothing publicly of its own police chief resigning a mere year and a half into the position. Why not? This is a newsworthy event in light of many ongoing issues and the public has a right to know how their tax dollars are spent. This site's mission is to provide ongoing critical coverage of a public institution of higher education, particularly given the dearth of coverage from local news sources on the topic. Typically, the Valley Courier and KRZA will publish ASU news releases without any investigation or further questioning, essentially functioning as state propaganda outlets for government administrators. This is not how the fourth estate is supposed to function in a democracy. That no other media outlets have covered the resignation of the police chief amidst legal controversies facing the institution, let alone many of the other stories we've covered, is a testament to the information gap this site fills as a public service. Calling for the removal of free expression is hardly becoming of an institution of higher education and Watching Adams continues because it receives significant daily traffic and tracks developments at Adams State University. You are free not to visit, and your comments will be published so long as they fall within the site's guidelines, but the decision to “shut it down” is not any commentator's to make. And indeed our lives all go on with the satisfaction and purpose we each bring to them.
August 16, 2016 at 9:14pm I work at Adams too and the best way to stand strong for me is for you low self-esteem, short dick syndrome "victims" to sit down, shut up and do the jobs you are paid to do. Editor's Reply: This is probably not the operating principal of a university campus whose charge is to facilitate critical thought and encourage the free expression of ideas. But maybe you're onto something here; maybe that isn't the culture that Adams State embodies? Maybe ASU is more focused on authoritarian leadership and conformity?
August 16, 2016 at 2:05pm When we conceived of the Standing Strong March for next Friday, we never intended it to be focused only on Danny Ledonne. An administration that lies to everyone is a problem FOR EVERYONE! We all deserve an apology and we all deserve an administration that acts in students' and employees' best interests - with integrity! As you will see in the comment posted immediately prior to this one, we hope the Standing Strong March will include all employees, students, and citizens who have been wronged by ASU's leaders. Plan to bring a placard calling attention to any issues you deem appropriate. Contact the press, spread the word in any way possible.
August 16, 2016 at 2:00pm STANDING STRONG for EVERYONE at ASU! STANDING STRONG for a BETTER ASU! 10 days to go (Friday, 8/26, 12:00) On to Phase II. Now that plans have solidified and the media has been alerted via U.S. Mail (which should have arrived yesterday or today), we need to show the media there is interest. The more people who contact them, the more coverage, and then more people. All of this makes it more likely we will achieve our goals: admission of deceit, widespread apology (including new press release to all sources listed below), name clearing for Danny Ledonne, and recognition of the many problems we all face at the hands of ASU administration. Please express your intention to march next Friday or your support for our goals by emailing everyone on the list below. Additional examples / issues beyond the Ledonne case welcome. You will have the most impact by supplying your name and role (student, faculty, staff, citizen), but you can ask to remain anonymous. Contacting these people is an important step! Valley Courier Ruth Heide firstname.lastname@example.org Pueblo Chieftain Robert Boczkiewicz email@example.com Denver Post Tom McGhee firstname.lastname@example.org Colorado Independent Eliza Carter Tips@ColoradoIndependent.com Inside Higher Ed Editor@insidehighered.com The Cortez Journal email@example.com KGNU Radio https://www.kgnu.org/ht/email.html The Chronicle of Higher Education Emma Pettit c/o firstname.lastname@example.org 9 News email@example.com Academe Magazine Martin Kich firstname.lastname@example.org Foundation for Individual Rights in Education Alex Morey email@example.com WestWord Alan Prendergast http://www.westword.com/about/contact?author=5052731 Pagosa Daily Post John Krieger firstname.lastname@example.org The College Fix Greg Piper email@example.com Accuracy In Academia Spencer Irvine c/o Mal.Kline@academia.org STANDING STRONG for JUSTICE – for all!!!! WE WILL BE HEARD!!!!
August 15, 2016 at 1:52pm What any administration wants is in-fighting between employees rather than unifying to stand up for their concerns. You are white, he is brown, she is a woman, etc. but we all have problems with this university and are more alike than we are different. Whether you support or even know Danny Ledonne, the issues his case highlights affect many other people - some have left already and others still struggle here... Who will be banned without due process next? There's no reason to bicker over an individual person's ethnicity or gender. Faculty and staff should come together and support one another or else they will continue being shed or picked off, one by one. Lots of new empty offices at the end of last year.
August 14, 2016 at 7:28pm I agree not to expect anything from the president and the board from the march, but maybe it's not about their response; it's about getting organized for common causes. While the controversy surrounding Ledonne's treatment extends far beyond not being retained (he was banned from campus and the president repeatedly claimed that he was a threat), there is no reason that campus activism has to be limited to one former faculty member (of any race, gender, or orientation). Ledonne stepped forward, maybe others can, as well? So yes, one former faculty is far from alone here. Why not bring forward the many others who have been wronged by the administration? We all know that the mistreatment of past and present employees (and students) isn't limited to Ledonne. How can others get involved?
August 14, 2016 at 6:35pm McClure won't apologize nor will she resign. Don't expect anything from the Board of Trustees either. I'm not saying that the march is a waste of time, just know that they will not admit their wrongdoing. In all of this, I can't help but wonder; what if Ledonne was black or brown? Would the outcome have been the same? Is this some white male privilege showing itself? What about a certain professor that was gay and was not retained by Adams? No one spoke for her. No one put a fight for her. Continuing support for Ledonne, a white male, feels unfair at this time. Hasn't he had his glory? He has been represented. Move over and let others get their representation! Or will no one fight for the minorities?
August 14, 2016 at 2:25pm I hear lots of talk about retaining and recruiting us, but I don't think a lying president helps with either! WE WILL BE HEARD!
August 12, 2016 at 3:19pm Yes, WE WILL BE HEARD. Don't underestimate us. All of you are here because of us. Like many other organizations on campus, AS&F speaks for Beverlee McClure and those that suck-up to her. She has to apologize for lying to us. She thought that like others we will also accept her lies.
August 12, 2016 at 12:12pm Regarding the last comment with the announcement about the campus march, we made 1,000 copies of a flier that includes the text of that comment, plus pictures of McClure and Ledonne. McClure’s bubble says “I lied to you. I used you. Ledonne was never a threat.” Ledonne’s bubble says “I fight with the pen, not the sword.” Look for them on campus soon. We also are in the process of contacting and sending a flier to all the newspapers, television stations, and websites that covered the ACLU lawsuit so they can cover our march: Valley Courier, Pueblo Chieftain, Denver Post, Colorado Independent, Inside Higher Ed, The Cortez Journal, KGNU Radio, The Chronicle of Higher Education, 9 News, Academe Magazine, Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, WestWord, Pagosa Daily Post, The College Fix, Accuracy In Academia. We WILL be heard!!!
August 12, 2016 at 12:07pm Standing Strong for an Apology: March to Richardson Hall When: Friday, August 26th, 12:00 noon Start: In front of Nielsen Library Purpose: To force president McClure and the Board of Trustees to come clean by admitting McClure lied to students, employees, and the community about Danny Ledonne. She lied to us when she said Ledonne was on a “Colorado State Police Watch List” (AS&F meeting) and he made “direct and indirect threats against individuals” (email to all students) and many more lies. She needs to admit Danny Ledonne was never a threat to anyone in order to clear his name and restore his reputation. The president must apologize to everyone she lied to and used by claiming she was acting to ensure our safety. The president must apologize to Danny Ledonne. President McClure not only lied to us, she used us like pawns in her twisted games by claiming the Ledonne ban was for “our safety.” She and the board treated us like children, assuming we would believe whatever they told us. We will show them they were wrong. We paid attention to their unethical games and now we will make ourselves heard. President McClure should resign. How could anyone trust her after she lied to us and used us? If she won’t resign, the Board should fire her. If the Board won’t fire her, they should be fired. Standing Strong for Truth, Free Speech, Ledonne’s Reputation
August 12, 2016 at 11:36am From yesterday: “Adams State University will prevail under the new leadership of Dr. McClure and Dr. Gilmer. Out with the old, in with the new.” Some people here seem to believe that universities succeed or fail based on “leadership” and this myth that history is driven by “great (wo)men.” But that's usually not true. Organizations succeed or fail based mostly on the transaction-end of the workforce – those who interact directly with students on a daily basis. The retention research consistently shows this. So when we hear “out with the old, in with the new,” that sounds like an indifference to the real, ongoing turnover of the very faculty and staff who have a direct connection to students. Then, not surprisingly, students don't stick around either. Why should they? It puzzles me that people take time out of their workday to come on here for the sole purpose of ridiculing this website and the people who post here. If you don't like Watching Adams, nobody is making you visit this website. So rather than insulting one another here, let's come up with some constructive suggestions that we can all work on rather than looking to leaders on high to solve our problems for us ( because they probably won't). Here's an idea: Faculty and staff at ASU should get more organized and collectively represent their concerns. It's fairly clear that Faculty Senate is a slow, risk-adverse body that takes a year and a day just to advance any particular issue, now made more ineffective by a chair of two departments also serving as Faculty Senate president. This is a clear sign that this governing body represents the interests of the administration, not the faculty. We also have a Contingent Faculty and Instructor Council for adjuncts and other non-tenure faculty. What ever happened to that? There was also the Campus Advocacy Group. There's an article on this website about how that was killed by the administration, so maybe there's a lesson there. So what about more members joining the new American Association of University Professors (AAUP) chapter at ASU? Faculty and staff can join, according to their website. What about joining other professional organizations that represent the interests of faculty and staff? It's our workplace, too. We shouldn't just believe that we are here to serve administrators – we are here to serve students!
August 12, 2016 at 8:42am Oh blessed Doctors, apparently you may have been born great, or a least you have had greatness thrust upon you. We supplicants believe that “Adams State University will prevail under [your] new leadership.” We are under your leadership; tell us what to do, and we will whistle while we work.
August 12, 2016 at 8:22am Okay, time to drop the invective, the points scoring, the playground taunts. The fact is that ASU - and all of us who sail in her - need to do better. We can’t expect Dr McClure by herself will somehow save us. The redemptive leader is so rare as to be mythical. She needs to accept that, and the rest of us need to accept that too. Now, let’s hear some new ideas. God bless those who “Think Different”. “Here's to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They're not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can't do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.” Bob Siltanen, oft quoted by Steve Jobs.
August 11, 2016 at 5:27pm This afternoon my phone lit up and I learned I was referenced on this site. Not by name but by comments made by me, and known by many. I will not let the School of Business or my colleagues there take a sword that was meant for me. Nor will I be bullied. At 1:47, the editor wrote about Dr. Finney and the "Billy Pulpit" online publication he started. Mark (Finney) and I went to coffee several times and talked about writing and I enjoyed him as a colleague. He wanted employee personal essays, and good robust discussion of ideas on his site. I tossed an essay idea to him that I had been wanting to write. He invited it. So I wrote a personal essay about my desires to be a professor, starting in 1968, and of my first professorship in 1992. It was a humor piece with attempted satire and my early (1992) disappointments and disillusionment as I joined a university and faculty then. That is where I used the word "gauche" tied to salaries. My first big intellectual discussion with the academics I revered and they complained about their pay. It was intended to be humorous. The essay was also about how much I liked Adams, how I had been welcomed by faculty and staff. A good place, I was glad to be here. Mark put my essay on his site and it was almost immediately hit with criticism from humorless men in McDaniel Hall. They took my 1992 reflective comments and made them personal and political. They and I exchanged a few personal emails on the issue and then one pasted select email comments of mine into the site - an egregious violation of ethics. Perhaps I was insufficient a writer to pull off a humor piece, but it should not be misused on this site, out of context and dishonestly. The other quotes along with "gauche" and apparently attributed also to me are not mine - but, thus the dishonesty. Just as Mark's site was not successful in generating ideas and good discussion, neither is this one nor will it be. It is simply a hit site for those who are not willing to accept a woman president, those who do not have the talent or ambition to generate the incomes they wish, those who will not take "no" for an answer, and those who satisfy their lives by anonymously attacking others. We should all be better than this. We can be - a new semester is about to begin. Let's put our energies into welcoming, serving, and teaching well our students. I think we will be happier too. Michael Tomlin Professor of Business Management ----Editor's Reply: Thank you for refreshing our memory and clarifying this reference. Many of us very much enjoyed the Billy Pulpit and wished for it to continue. We can all agree on the desire for Adams State to serve its students and for those who work there to be happy in the workplace.
August 11, 2016 at 3:56pm "Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them." - William Shakespeare None of which can be said of anyone posting on this asinine website! Adams State University will prevail under the new leadership of Dr. McClure and Dr. Gilmer. Out with the old, in with the new.
August 11, 2016 at 1:47pm The August 10, 8:45am author made a good point. We should all feel grateful that there is a place to voice our opinions. I wonder if there was such a place in Svaldi's reign if things could have been different. Sounds like if anyone dared disagree with Svaldi or his cronies it was met with nasty words, criticism and worse. Probably the same people that condoned Svaldi's mismanagement and cronyism are the same protecting this administration. Got something to hide? If people don't feel safe to have a difficult conversations with administration then places such as this is absolutely necessary. If not it will, most likely, end up just like the Svaldi's years and just look at where that got us. Editor's Reply: Back in 2012-2013, Dr. Mark Finney in Mass Communications published a monthly newsletter called The Billy Pulpit with the expressed goal of increasing campus-wide communication and fostering important conversations about the workplace. Lo and behold, one of the first issues to arise were the perceived impropriety of the creation of another admin position (Assistant VPAA) and the role being filled without a comprehensive search process. The other major issue raised were salary inequities – with Psychology department faculty saying they and others are substantially underpaid while Business department faculty making free market arguments about their faculty bringing more “value” and commanding higher salaries due to their professions. And as is typical, one Business faculty member asserted that it was “gauche” to even bring up such matters! “Shut up and get back to work,” was the message, “we're on top and we like it that way.” So much for campus equity. The Billy Pulpit disappeared when Dr. Finney, like so many others, left ASU in the summer of 2013. And nothing replaced it. Things continued to fester beneath the surface on so many issues. Campus dialogue languished. University salary data wasn't being reported and there were active efforts not to “open that can of worms” when the matter was brought up. This state of affairs certainly served those in charge and those who developed comfortable alliances with administrators, but it also left many feeling marginalized, upset, disheartened, overworked and under-appreciated. It took an outsider with contacts and institutional knowledge to create Watching Adams as the imperfect alternative to the Billy Pulpit. If such a publication were to return and offer the kind of “robust academic discourse” we are all told exists at ASU, perhaps this website will no longer be needed. But until then, ASU has offered no alternative means of a campus-wide forum in which people feel safe in voicing their concerns without fear of retaliation – which is painfully obvious in the many degrading comments and actions towards “complainers” at ASU. In a healthy and functional workplace, Watching Adams wouldn't exist and it certainly wouldn't be getting over 80,000 views in its first year.
August 11, 2016 at 1:23pm Reading through these comments, it seems like there are really two conversations going on. One is identifying problems with ASU that have continued under several administrations and now are the subject of sanctions, investigations, audits, and media scrutiny. The other conversation is ignoring or setting all that aside to ridicule a few individual people who had nothing to do with these larger problems other than trying to call attention to them before things got worse. One group is interested in substance and the other is interested in personal attacks. They call people “bullies” and accuse them of “shaming” yet it seems like projection to me – they are doing the bullying and shaming while offering no solutions. Someone wrote, “Sure, ASU has many problems, and because of the nature and deep-cutting issues behind these problems, it will take some time to correct.” But are they being corrected, at all? Let's look at one example, which this website brought up from the beginning: salary inequities. Two years ago, we had a special committee formed to review salaries, create a group of peer institutions, and measure ASU compensation against other schools on a per-position basis. The results are posted online and the problems are clear to see. Has anything been done to address the low faculty salaries and bloated administrative pay? No. And as the 2016-2017 salary data shows, these problems are being made worse with across-the-board raises that reward high-paying positions with more increases and do little to address the low pay of most faculty and staff. Now, some former administrators are getting sweetheart deals at the expense of everyone else – all paid for by students and taxpayers. The numbers speak for themselves. Read the State Auditor's comments about the university's finances and take a look at declining enrollment and high employee turnover. It seems like some people are in denial that these problems are continuing and would prefer to identify scapegoats who truly had nothing to do with these issues to begin with. This is not helpful. Imagine if people actually asked questions of those making these decisions when they put out bogus press releases instead of insulting the people who bring up these problems as any concerned citizen could and should do.
August 11, 2016 at 11:29am It surprises me the level of absurdity Ledonne and his followers will go to discredit people. Sure, ASU has many problems, and because of the nature and deep-cutting issues behind these problems, it will take some time to correct. Yet, Ledonne and his cult rather jump at every opportunity to discredit anyone or anything that might be productive. For being highly educated people, none of you use your logic or critical thinking skills. I am glad that Ledonne has created his own death in higher education. All institutions of higher learning will be better off without him instructing a class ever again. I am glad Ledonne was let go by his peers who did not see him fit to teach anymore. As for his cult followers, I'm sure the same will happen to you--yes, all of you from the library, staff, and faculty, who blindly were captivated by his slander and journey of destruction. Higher ed brings in some odd balls and people who otherwise couldn't make it in real society, and Ledonne and his cult are proof of that. ----Editor's Reply: Ledonne and many others continue to "make it in real society" beyond ASU and also continue to organize and advocate for improved accountability, transparency, outcomes and working conditions in higher education. There are, of course, many ways of doing this and varying approaches may be necessary to improve higher education at Adams State and across the country.
August 11, 2016 at 11:08am It is outrageous that, as this website shows, a half-time employee, the Controller of Sponsored Programs, earns $89,000 a year, plus benefits. This is equivalent to an annual salary of $198,000! This violates pay equity laws and it also hints of chicanery - Why is the administration willing to pay (off?) such an incredible salary? Signed, A Very Concerned Citizen
August 11, 2016 at 10:27am In response to the previous comment (at 7:54): your arrogance and ignorance are astounding. There are many of us who love Adams State. Love our colleagues. Love the students we serve. Love the community we live in. ( yes, lots of love here! Oh I said it!) AND yet we dislike and are unhappy (*gasp! Love and dislike!? Oh my! Did I disagree? Is that possible?!?) with the decisions made by administration; mismanagement of budget, perpetuation of salary inequities, programmatic inequities & prioritization, public relations incompetence. To think that there can only be love in any relationship without disaccord is asinine. What you may call "lies", I call data. And rather than listen to people's dissenting opinion, you bully and shame. I pity you for being unable to hold a constructive dialogue without breaking into cheering and bringing your grandmother's balls into the conversation. One of the main components many of us try to encourage in our students is critical thinking. To think critically is to question things, not take information at face value, look at the argument behind the numbers and the numbers behind the argument. To ask our students to develop these skills and not practice them ourselves at an institution of higher education is hypocritical at best.
August 11, 2016 at 8:59am A quick tip to the previous commenter at 7:54. Don't drink and text!
August 11, 2016 at 7:54am I suppose at every university, not just Adams State, there are a handful of naysayers bucking the system with malcontent, disaccord, and pessimism. If this site was truly "watching" Adams the publisher (hi, Ledonne!), the librarian (oh, hey!), and the others adding fuel to the flames (yes, we see you!), would unplug their ears and hear when I ask where are the unbias truths about the good things so many of us see at the ASU we love? The hatemongers only spew hate. Instead of building walls that attempt to obstruct positive change, growth, and success at ASU, the defensive rhetoric stained with tainted lies found here should be replaced with truth, the walls that come down for the hopefulness of peace. Only then can the university that Alamosa loves (yes, I said loves), faculty & staff love (oh, there I said it again), students love (so much love right here), and President McClure loves (wow, that's a lot of love for this site, huh?)...only when the destructive attitudes of all of you (and by "all" I do mean "few") stop with your own personal agendas and think about someone other than your sad, pitiful Pearl, poor little me, whining and stop acting like victims. As my grandmother loved to tell the wimpy kids who didn't play well with others...grow a set of balls! Now, run along and play nicely, children. Go, Grizzlies! Go, Beverlee! Go, fight, win!! ----Editor's Reply: And in every aspect of society, not just universities, there will be a large group of supporters who rally behind leadership elements and embrace a form of jingoistic fanfare for the status quo. They will view any form of divergent or critical perspective as inherently incompatible with their worldview and remain focused on their institutional affiliations in generalized and facile terms. For them, any number of issues that arise are likely to be exercises in cognitive dissonance to be rationalized or ignored while those who raise them must be the subject of marginalization and scorn. The discourse will be cast in emotional terms of "love" and "hate" as a form of tribalism while the specifics at hand must be swept away in favor of chants, slogans, and power fantasies that reference testicular fortitude as the predominant currency. It is the same in most every group affiliation when open discourse is shunned in favor of top-down hierarchy. August 11, 2016 at 8:48am I find the Edtor's Replies to be the most comical. Such big words for small minds. ----Editor's Reply: You're most welcome. The comedy is included and the willingness to publish your baseless invective is no additional charge.
August 10, 2016 at 8:45am As correctly observed in earlier posts, Drs. Mumper and Novotny remaining in their respective administrative positions in spite of their obviously detrimental effect on the institution is entirely attributable to President Svaldi’s negligence, lack of intestinal fortitude and complacence owing to his own imminent retirement. As was pointed out in a recent post (August 9, 2016 at 9:37am), President McClure deserves due credit for taking action in an attempt to rectify the situation (i.e., “…fired a few people and then circled wagons around the rest of her people”). However, it is also true that it did not require any special judgment on her part to recognize either Mumper’s obvious incompetence or the toxic effect of Novotny’s complete lack of integrity and bullying incompetence on academic affairs. More importantly, until the administrative malignancy under President Svaldi’s leadership has been fully eradicated doubt will continue to be cast on President McClure’s integrity. It should be noted that Drs. Novotny and Mumper engineered into their own contracts outrageous “golden parachutes” should they “decide to resign” their administrative posts and return to faculty status. While shamelessly lining their own pockets, the administration of which they were senior members failed to address stagnant faculty salaries or budgets for academic programs that have been underfunded literally for decades. This, of course, was justified on the altar of fiscal responsibility on behalf of the institution. Their blatant hypocrisy is utterly disgusting. Novotny would do well to bear in mind that those he has bullied and/or screwed while enjoying the advantage of administrative rank WILL and DO remember. Good riddance, Mr. Big Shot. Not to be overlooked - President Svaldi’s complacence and negligence with respect to Mumper’s and Novotny’s greed are manifest in his approval of those contracts. Perhaps President Svaldi’s mega portrait should be rethought and relocated (to the basement?) Faculty and staff at ASU should be grateful to Watching Adams for providing a forum that advances administrative transparency and oversight to the ultimate benefit of the institution.
August 9, 2016 at 10:56pm It is also very convenient how the people that ASU administrators mark as "bullies" rarely receive due process or an opportunity to challenge the accusations against them. What ASU lacks is a culture of accountability or transparency in workplace conflicts. Then after the "bully" resigns or is terminated, the rumors circulate quickly to assure everyone that they must really have "deserved it." With all the faculty who just left this year, imagine what new justifications will circle campus to poison the well against them. Couldn't be anything wrong with ASU, right?
August 9, 2016 at 8:05pm It is very convenient how Stephen Roberds has forgot all the controversy, problems, and the adversarial environment he created while at ASU. Many people confused his "radical" ideas and pushing the limits to be academic freedom, and he did much of it for shock value, but many also quickly learned his game and distanced themselves from him. Students thought he was something else because he cussed in class, but that wore thin as well. He bullied students into taking his classes, talked badly about his colleagues at any moment, all while acting surprised when he would be corrected or disciplined. Not only that, he basically abused every work-study he had with verbal abuse, or danced on the line of sexual harassment. He also committed a cardinal sin by abuse his captive audience students with forcing his beliefs upon them, and remaining inappropriate at any moment (athletes, non-athletes, etc.). No, Roberds was no gift to ASU. People may have been tricked into thinking he was some prolific academic he believed he was. Towards the end, people were distancing themselves from him because of his poisonous attitude and ways. To support him is supporting corruption and unbecoming of a professor. What gets me the most is anytime he would get into trouble, he acted like he did nothing wrong and always played the victim card; similarly to Ledonne claiming he was bullied, but was truly the bully himself.
August 9, 2016 at 6:38pm Let us go on another hunt. How much will this one cost ASU and the Colorado tax payer?
August 9, 2016 at 4:16pm I too was fooled by the president, right up to the point where McClure used “acts of terrorism” in the Valley Courier interview. At that point, I knew she was unhinged and unfit to lead Adams State. Who the hell throws around the word “terrorism” in today’s world? That’s why I love The College Fix’s headline: Public university pays critical professor $100,000 for calling him a terrorist. Then things got worse with her childish response to the HLC probation, which could have only made our situation worse. Very unprofessional. Most recently, ASU’s ridiculous first cut at a press release regarding the ACLU lawsuit. Delusional. Unfit, unprofessional, shoots from the hip without thinking... Time for McClure to go!
August 9, 2016 at 9:37am August 8 Commenter has a point. Yes, much of the mess ASU finds itself in is directly the result of the former president’s mismanagement. For a decade, Dr Svaldi ruled, and nothing happened, other than nest-feathering by his accomplices. Huge amounts of money were spent on sporting facilities, on the spurious notion a la Kevin Costner that “if we build it, they will come.” By all indices, it seems the opposite is true: “We built it; they are going.” Commenter asks; “Where was everyone during Svaldi’s reign? Surely people knew what was happening. Why was his corruption overlooked?” The answers are: Yes, they did know. But no one dared raised questions for fear of being put down, humiliated and ostracised. “Complainers” were ordered to Svaldi’s office for reprimand. He sent damning emails to anyone who questioned the status quo, CC’ed to multiple people across campus. Dr McClure inherited this situation. But instead of investigating the foundation of these problems - a culture of complacency and vindictiveness on the part of administrators, and a culture of capitulation and compliance on the part of faculty and staff - she did a Donald Trump, fired a few people and then circled wagons around the rest of "her people." Yesterday I was accosted by someone who knows, reprovingly, that I occasionally contribute to WA. He demanded to know, now that the LeDonne affair had ended, why WA continued. I pointed out the August 8 posting, saying that unless we wish to have another ten years of Svaldi-esque rule, then we need to keep a light turned on poor practices and performance. Only when ASU embraces honest and full transparency, when it seeks different ideas and opinions from its own people instead of shredding them, will WA go away. ----Editor's Reply: People who think the existence of Watching Adams has anything to do with the Ledonne v. McClure lawsuit fundamentally do not understand why he created the website, as described on the About Us page. This site started two months before Ledonne was banned from campus and has nothing to do with his own hiring situation, which was only mentioned on the site tangentially when the University banned him and raised the issue of his hiring complaint. This comment has it exactly right – Watching Adams continues to exist precisely because the problems it covers continue to be relevant obstacles... but not intractable ones.
August 9, 2016 at 8:06am I, Stephen C Roberds, propose that Dr. Novotny have until 11:00 AM, August 10, 2016 to submit his resignation. Otherwise, ASU will commence proceedings to have him terminated for unspecified reasons that will remain unspecified. This "due process" has precedent when Dr. Novotny and his sycophant buddy Crowther attempted to force me to resign within 24 hours with no specific reason, allegation, provided. Surely, Drs Novotny and Crowther would not expect to be treated any better than they treated me. Oh, and both of the above named morally deficient individuals should be permanently banned from campus due to threats, harassment, and their names being on the state police list of terror suspects.
August 8, 2016 at 6:41pm Those that are commenting about the salary ranges of special individuals have to remember that those deals were cut with old man Svaldi. Don't blame this Prez for Svaldi's corrupt years and all the crap he and his cronies did. All those on his "E Team" were part of the problem and should, by all rights, be terminated. The amount of money that was misspent during his reign would probably make all of us sick. Where was everyone during Svaldi's reign? Surely people knew what was happening. Why was his corruption overlooked? Was it because he came from the ranks of faculty and in your eyes it's ok to screw people as long as you are one of us?
August 6, 2016 at 10:53pm So let me get this straight: the new VPAA positions still make six figures, along with the previous VPAA employees who now have the same responsibilities of faculty members making half as much? As we tighten program budgets and "guarantee" tuition rates to students, how is this financially sustainable? We should all rotate in/out of these positions until everyone is making six figures at ASU! No wonder the university's finances are being audited and their credit rating has been downgraded.
August 6, 2016 at 11:33am In the context of fairness and campus-wide “equity”, the grossly disproportionate and utterly disgraceful salaries awarded to Drs. Novotny and Mumper upon their “decisions” to “resign” their respective administrative positions and return to faculty status should be of particular interest to faculty holding the same academic rank (i.e., Professor) in their respective disciplines (academic departments in which they are, incidentally, clearly superfluous). See Positions FS1601 and FA1501 listed on ASU Salary Data: Faculty 2016-17 posted on the Documents page of this site. Salary for position FS1601 (Professor of Chemistry) is $106,608, which is $39,816 greater than the salary of $66,792 for position FS8002 (Professor of Chemistry and Department Chair). Similarly, salary for position FA1501 (Professor of Political Science) is a whopping $122,280, which is more than TWICE the average salary ($57,764) of faculty holding the rank of Professor in the Department of History/Anthropology/Philosophy/Political Science/Spanish (i.e., positions FA0033, FA8002, and FA8003) and $45,492 greater than position FA8006 (Professor of History and Department Chair.) The shameless greed of ASU administrators lining their own pockets at the expense of their colleagues provides yet another example of the indefensible conduct that makes it impossible to support the administration at ASU.
August 5, 2016 at 12:42pm Along with cleaning-up house, the president and others need to take a hard look at programs and people in charge of programs. There are several programs (academic, non-academic, etc.) that are useless. Some departments only have a handful of students in areas; non-academic programs on this campus are not functioning properly or are not doing what they are supposed to do. The student life and outdoor program is a joke. No wonder why students are not active on campus. Look at the people in charge of those. They come off as "know-it-all" people. There are a lot of programs for hispanic students, but what are we doing for our Black student populations? Asian American students? How about other demographics beyond ethnicity? Gender, disabled, etc.? Far too many people get "promoted" or take on extra responsibilities just because it is all part of the "Good 'ol boys club" while others who are qualified or have a background in it are not having their skills utilized or given an option to lead. No wonder why so many people have left...I suspect more will be leaving this year as well. The president really needs to take a hard look at the whole campus, areas from administration, faculty, departments, programs, and so forth, and clean house that way. Much would be improved.
August 5, 2016 at 12:29pm I believe writing comments about how Ledonne has written his own death warrant for higher education is not wrong. Being he is now known to be controversial, even when unnecessary, and the lengths he will go to shame others is ridiculous. Just doing a simple search of him will deter search committees if he tries to apply for another academic position again. Along the same lines, McClure and other administrators, also have blame on them. They should have been more logical and deliberate to make sure that the court case would be easily handled instead of how it played out. However, good luck getting the president to apologize. If anything, ASU needs a re-start button. ---- Editor's Reply: We couldn't agree more about the need for an honest and true reboot at Adams State University! And to your first point, the rumors of Ledonne's professional demise are greatly exaggerated, and not for the first time. As everyone knows, in 2005 Ledonne created a videogame about the Columbine school shooting. A videogame! About Columbine! Death threats, hate mail, and calls for his firing from his job as a youth mentor ensued. Nonetheless, Ledonne produced a critically-acclaimed and commercially-successful documentary of the experience, secured a competitive fellowship in graduate school, expanded his video business, and taught at multiple universities and K-12 programs. Not ironically, "Super Columbine Massacre RPG" was cited by Dr. Mazel as among the reasons Ledonne was hired at ASU in 2011 and also among the reasons cited by Chief Grohowski as to why he banned from campus in 2015. We may be done with the past, but the past is never done with us. In virtually every article covering the ASU controversy, Ledonne and his allies at the ACLU appear as the protagonists while reactionary and oppressive university administrators flounder in self-contradictory statements that they cannot defend in their own shoddy press releases. So don't be surprised if Ledonne produces media of his experiences with ASU in the future. Moreover, until more faculty and staff in higher education are willing to stand up in solidarity for greater principals than their own careers or monthly paychecks, the deteriorating conditions in American academia aren't likely to improve. Here at ASU, Watching Adams persists because the conditions that necessitated its existence persist. Ledonne maintains this forum even as he is ridiculed, over and over, for doing so. Ergo, we should all think about what we can do, internally and externally, to improve institutional equity, transparency and demand accountability of government officials such as university administrators. And recognize that just as "well-behaved women seldom make history," so too is the case for "well-behaved men." So here's to the rabble-rousers, despite the nay-sayers, for being willing to swim upstream.
August 4, 2016 at 2:05pm "Education leaders and campuses must build trust. College presidents know that if they lose the trust of their boards, their faculty, government officials and sometimes their students, their jobs are at risk. Of late, too many presidents have lost their positions because the trust others held in them was eroded beyond repair. In this article, Karen Gross suggests that while university and college presidents need not be flawless, they must ferret out--and often quickly--what is fact and what is fiction. They must spend the time to think through the words they use to describe volatile situations, and above all else, own the truth, whether it is good or bad. Gross goes on to say that judging from current events, trust on campuses is eroding, including in leaders and within the student population. She emphasizes that without trust the connectivity so central to the creation of community and the capacity to learn and take risks diminishes. She concludes by asserting that educators need to spend more time rebuilding and valuing trust, not just divining and sharing truth." ("Truth, Transparency and Trust: Treasured Values in Higher Education" Gross, Karen, New England Journal of Higher Education, Feb 2015 - source)
August 4, 2016 at 1:30pm For those of you saying or thinking that it's just Danny and his minions commenting here and supporting the resignation of McClure; I, personally cannot stand Danny. I refuse to talk to him, I think he's a self-centered shithead. But McClure having him banned from campus and labeled a threat and terrorist is just plain wrong. Editor's Reply: This person clearly understands that civil rights aren't only for the popular kids.
August 4, 11:14am What's hilarious to me is that, while ASU administration continues to vilify Ledonne in public statements, they seem quite content with keeping all the videos he produced throughout the ASU website and even playing at the local movie theater!
August 4, 2016 at 11:11am A previous post (August 3, 8:05am) posed the following entirely valid question: “Why are multiple brand new VP positions with substantial salaries being created in the face of declining enrollment, woefully uncompetitive faculty and staff salaries, and tragically under-resourced departments and services?” Related, and equally relevant, questions are: 1. How does the ASU administration (i.e., President Svaldi, who approved the contracts) justify the disgracefully exorbitant salaries awarded to those “VP positions with substantial salaries” (i.e., Drs. Novotny and Mumper) upon their “resignation” and return to faculty status? When the 2016-17 faculty salary data are posted on this website this question should be of particular interest to their peers holding the same academic rank (i.e., Professor), in their respective disciplines. 2. More to the point, given their shameless and unjustified greed at the expense of their woefully underpaid peers, how do Drs. Novotny and Mumper retain any semblance of self-respect? (Obviously a rhetorical question.)
August 4, 2016 at 10:28am I, like many people, thought that Watching Adams would wither away after the court’s decision that LeDonne’s rights had been infringed. I thought administrators would take the whole saga as a learning experience, to be better listeners, to be a little kinder. But ASU’s words and actions show that they have learned nothing about respecting others’ rights, or even its own policies and protocols. Its July 25 press release said everything: “Business as usual. Lies as usual. Bullying as usual.” Even if LeDonne had not created Watching Adams, the problems endemic at ASU would have been no less. Watching Adams is merely making transparent the issues that are holding ASU back from being the great university it could be. By almost all metrics, ASU has been deteriorating for some time, well before Dr McClure took over. And yes, “like the president of the US, she cannot change things overnight.” But note that within the first year of his presidency, Obama had set in train the biggest, most radical (and perhaps most controversial) legislative project in modern American history - the Affordable Care Act. With McClure, we should have seen some moves in the right directions after at least a year in the driver’s seat. Sure, she’s fired a few people. Firing is easy to do. Ask Trump. Creating a coherent, cogent, comprehensive strategic plan is much more difficult Ask Trump. Attacking critics is easier than listening to what critics are saying. He would rather slander the parents of a fallen soldier than address the issues they raise. This is a pattern we see at ASU. So, by the way, where is the strategic plan that we all helped kick-start a year ago? Sure, “not every ounce of the blame should be put on [McClure]”, but she is paid the big bucks for taking responsibility for the actions of her administrators. Truman famously said that “the buck stops here.” Obama has repeated that quintessential axiom of leadership. No one in their right mind can seriously suggest that an unemployed, socially isolated (thanks to McClure) individual like LeDonne is responsible for McClure’s poor performance on every metric. Several commentators have agreed to self-reflection, then gone on to beat up LeDonne again. Self-reflection means being self-critical - how can I/we do a better job - not seeking out scapegoats to relieve us of the discomfort self-reflection necessarily induces. Time to start pointing the finger at ourselves, making ourselves better.
August 4, 2016 at 6:35am This has nothing to do with "stirring the pot." This is about lying and deceiving the campus community and the public. This is about losing trust. This is about lack of leadership. This is about making defamatory remarks and taking damaging actions affecting our university.
August 3, 2016 at 11:40pm Last I checked, Danny wasn't banned from campus because some people don't personally care for him or because they find him annoying or because they don't like his beard. He was banned from campus because (we were told repeatedly) he allegedly made threats of violence, direct and indirect threats, harassment and terrorism, and was on a police watch list. Has anyone seen evidence to support these claims? Because the ACLU never did, nor did any judge who reviewed the court documents. The whole issue of people liking or disliking someone is not sufficient for banning them from a public university campus. So stop the spin. The administration lied to you and now wants to pretend it never happened.
August 3, 2016 at 4:49pm When I first read McClure’s press release (Version 1.0), I was outraged. Shocked that she once again resorted to lying to cover her previous lies and mistakes. My next reaction was laughter at how ridiculously amateurish it was. McClure and her PR folks must have total contempt for students and the public, thinking they are completely stupid if they believed people wouldn’t see through it. I predicted the joke of a press release would bite her in the butt by pissing people off and by not taking responsibility for what she did. And here we are: media folks are calling her on her “win”, people are writing to the governor, and the students are planning to march on Richardson Hall. Nice job! Standing Strong for Justice!
August 3, 2016 at 4:25pm From ASU’s press release: “the only cost to Adams State was a $2,500 deductible”. What a sad, sad joke. Only cost! Someone did a good job listing the variety of costs that go well beyond the $100,000 loss to ASU (like over a thousand hours of wasted time?). Add to that list all the legal fees that president McClure’s foolish mistake led to to handle the ACLU lawsuit. I don’t know if ASU had to pay those, but if they didn’t then taxpayers certainly did. The legal fees alone must be way more than the $100,000 paid to Danny.
August 3, 2016 at 1:57pm It still remains, from many of the comments on this page, people are blowing up and trying to create controversy that is not needed. This page aims to expose the corruption of ASU? No, this page is trying to stir the pot in negative ways. This is truly the fault of Ledonne and his cult, all of which have created more problems than there needs to be. We cannot dismiss the fact that ASU problems have been present for a while now. Svaldi let too many things slide, which started much of the issues in Richardson and the campus. McClure came on, had a ton to deal with right away, and had to work with administrators that were no good. She really need to keep on "cleaning house" in the administration, because there are still too many people who are not qualified to do the jobs they are doing. Especially the way enrollment is not improving, those in charge of that area need to go, because they have no business being in charge of an important area for the university, let alone they are not qualified for their position. This goes for other areas in the administration too. Sure, McClure has not made some good decisions. Maybe her method of dealing with things (like Ledonne) did not work out. However, just like the president of the US, she cannot just change things overnight. I would guess that as soon as more cleaning is done in the administration, and better and qualified people are brought in (like our new VPAA), things will drastically improve. Not every ounce of the blame should be put on her. People, like Ledonne and others, have stalled and created too many obstacles for her to make additional needed improvements. Just because a professor gets praising student evaluations does not mean they are master educators. I too have heard from Ledonne's students who would rather say nice things about him (in evaluations) than put up with his bully tactics to justify his existence. I have also heard from students who say they rather play along with saying he is a good educator because they feel that he would punish them if they did not. One good thing about Ledonne is that he has made such a bad name for himself, and has publicly made himself to be an adversarial colleague, that no higher ed institution would want to hire him. Why would any university bring someone on who they can see will take them to court for not being re-hired? He is foolish to think he has a place in academia. I agree with self-reflection. Everyone should do that. Instead of creating more controversy to bring this place down, think about ways you can improve, both as a person and as a professional. This all needs to stop, otherwise we all will suffer. ----Editor's Reply: No one, including Ledonne himself, has hailed him as a “master educator.” Through (anonymous) course evaluations as well as directed reviews of his performance at ASU, analysis reveals a “pattern of behavior” that includes going out of his way to foster new programs and initiatives, volunteering his time and expertise on committees and working groups, and continued collaboration with former students and peers. During discovery, Ledonne collected over a dozen testimonials solely from female former students and peers at ASU simply to demonstrate that there is a broad support for his efforts, despite the acrimony leveled at his (unpaid) exercise in offering an alternative to the propagandist narrative of the ASU administration. Even after the campus ban, any number of colleagues and former students reached out in support and cheered him on through the successful completion of court proceedings that resulted in the ban being lifted, zero evidence or witnesses ever supporting the university's false allegations, and a settlement to Ledonne and the ACLU simply to drop the court case. This pervasive hostility toward Ledonne's prospects in academia is really meant to frighten anyone else who might dare speak truth to power and make public that which administrators would prefer to keep under tight wraps while distributing highly misleading press-releases. Apparently, the mere act of creating a website that posts articles, documents, commentary, and reader comments appears to be an unacceptable act of criticizing the Emperor's New Clothes, calling for Ledonne to wear a Scarlet Letter and be banished from the kingdom. Disregard for the free exchange of ideas is not becoming of a university campus. But this is all indeed a distraction; what is telling is how often criticism of ASU is met with attacks against someone who hasn't even worked at ASU in over a year now. Many of ASU's problems existed before, during, and after one faculty member's time at ASU. These problems, such as diminished enrollment, low student graduation rates, low employee morale, and bloated administrative positions and salaries, appear to be worsening under the McClure administration. Further, there appear to be heightened levels of employee discord, a culture of fear and shaming, and a kind of toxic tribalism that continues to produce more faculty and staff leaving due to attrition. And despite such barbs of hostility towards a divergent point of view amidst such turmoil, Ledonne continues to receive strong support, praise, assistance and solidarity in his efforts to speak truth to power and hold ASU administrators accountable for the failings of an institution. His efforts are not in the service of personal popularity but rather of higher ideals and principals. ASU deserves better, the San Luis Valley deserves better, and we can all find ways to hold ourselves and one another accountable to this end – even and especially when we disagree. Regarding charges of "negativity," please check out our commentary “Negativity” is negative, President McClure. Time to Change the Tune. Lastly, have you ever tried cooking without "stirring the pot?" All the substance gets stuck at the bottom and burned while the seasoning rises to the top. Stew on that for a bit.
August 3, 2016 at 8:05am It is truly heartening to see students asking important questions about the condition of their institution. Student activism is what will lead to desperately needed changes at Adams State, and those changes go well beyond just a new president and a fresh board of trustees. Foxes have guarded the hen house for far too long at ASU; a full cleansing of long entrenched, self-rewarding administrators is needed if the school is to ever lift itself up, discover its amazing potential, and fully serve its students. Here are a few more questions students should consider posing: 1. How many of your professors have left ASU in the past academic year? Why did they leave? How many of them would have stayed if conditions were different? I encourage students to contact their departed professors and ask these questions directly. And then share what you learn. 2. What does it cost to replace a single professor? These costs include but are not limited to the time of search committee members, travel expenses for multiple candidates, and moving expenses for the selected candidate. How could these resources (i.e., your tuition dollars) be otherwise allocated if ASU valued and supported their people enough to retain them? 3. Why are multiple brand new VP positions with substantial salaries being created in the face of declining enrollment, woefully uncompetitive faculty and staff salaries, and tragically under-resourced departments and services? Could funds for these new administrator salaries be better allocated in another way that better supports your education? 4. Why is the state legislature conducting an unprecedented audit of ASU finances? 5. Why is ASU on academic probation? What are the implications? 6. If administrators were at the helm as all these problems arose, should those same administrators be trusted to resolve them? Why aren’t your professors actively examining these questions? Ask them to stand with you. 7. Why aren’t faculty and staff asking these questions on your behalf? Are they fearful? If so, why? Ask them. But don’t pose these questions to ASU administrators. Ask your professors, ask the state legislature, ask the Higher Learning Commission, ask the governor. Don’t accept pat, dismissive explanations from ASU administrators if they are offered. And certainly don’t accept anyone suggesting it’s none of your business. It is your university and it is very much your business. Student activism across the country is bringing about dramatic change on many campuses. Look to Green River Community College and U.C. Davis as just two of many, many examples. Be the change you want to see. You have the power.
August 2, 2016 at 11:42pm Plain and simple: McClure's repeated lies have led to the current state of affairs. She is a president of a public university. She is responsible and cannot put the blame on past leadership and current employees who advise her. A liar cannot be trusted. She has to resign, if not then the board has to let her go.
August 2, 2016 at 8:55pm "Most importantly, ask yourself why you are in higher education. Aren't we all here to help the students? Aren't students our top priority, giving them a quality education?" Couldn't agree more. And for students to stay and succeed, faculty and staff must have a healthy and supportive culture. That starts with a workplace that is free from bullying, retaliation, fear-based leadership, lying to faculty and students, administrators who disregard policy and procedure, and fair, competitive compensation for the many hours put into the classroom or the office.
August 2, 2016 at 4:38pm Does anyone know the story behind the recent resignation of former trustees Val Vigil and Mary Griffin? Might this have something to do with the Ledonne case? I'm sure it does, but as always, ASU will put a positive lie-filled spin on their departure.
August 2, 2016 at 2:54pm If it's okay to have a march in support of McClure and her repeated false statements about Ledonne to the entire campus, it seems reasonable to call for a march in opposition to these very same measures now that it seems clear the amount of employee time and student money ASU wasted. And for what? Ledonne is free to be on campus as he was growing up here and teaching here. ASU doesn't have money for any number of pressing matters but it has the money to go after anyone who criticizes the administration?
August 2, 2016 at 2:07pm I have been reluctant to ever comment on here, but now it seems to be warranted. I think everyone should calm down, take a chill pill, and do some reflecting. Sure, there are many problems at Adams State, many of which began long before McClure became president. As much as I liked Svaldi, he let far too many things pass, especially in his finals few years as president. McClure inherited those problems. Sure, some problems came into existence after she became president, but in my opinion, far too many people expected her to fix everything overnight. I know there was a positive and supportive atmosphere when she became president, but look at what she has done to try and improve a few things (i.e., got rid of Novotny and Mansheim, and other "clean-up jobs"). With this recent talk and promotion for a walk in support of Ledonne and trying to force her to apologize or resign, remember, just because you do away with one person does not guarantee the next will be any better. I am not necessarily saying we all have to fully support the president. I think there is more she should do to clean up the image and create a more positive environment on this campus. More "bad eggs" in Richardson and around campus need to leave. I truly believe that the president has been misinformed about several things. Evidence: look at some of the recent changes on campus. People are in charge of programs that have no business running them. Other programs need to be looked into because they are not producing any positive outcomes on campus. We could be doing more to better this campus for the students, our number 1 priority. Far too many people want to point fingers and blame others, instead of trying to work together. I know that I am not the only one feeling isolated or that my voice is unheard these days. These days, I rather simply do my job, not say too much, and go about my business quietly. Too many people are in this witch hunt; this is where a paradox exists in higher education. Too many over-educated people think they know what is the best thing to do, but in doing so have created adversarial conditions for others. However, some simple facts remain. The president cannot fix things overnight. Because so many problem existed before her time, along with the problems that came up in her presidency, it will take some time to fix things, hopefully sooner rather than later. She has been ill advised on matters, but some of the main problems are now gone or demoted. Sure, she has made poor decisions, said stuff incorrectly, and all, but at least she is trying. Ledonne, on the other hand, has been nothing but a pain. I know most of his students did not like him, as they only put on a facade to not be victim to his bully tactics. He was not wanted by his fellow faculty (whether or not it was faculty searches). His faculty and peers did NOT want him. Why would anyone want to work at a place that did not want them? Through all of his complaining, lawsuit, and such, he has made himself very undesirable for any academic position again, because now he has a long record of being a cry-baby because he did not keep a position. It is sad that he has wasted so much money, time, resources, and attention away to more important issues. I ask that everyone take a few moments to do a self-reflection. Ask yourself if you are doing anything to help improve the conditions at Adams State. Ask yourself if whatever issue you are taking (these days either being anti-McClure or pro-Danny), if that is the best thing. Ask yourself if you are being the best version of yourself in these issue. Most importantly, ask yourself why you are in higher education. Aren't we all here to help the students? Aren't students our top priority, giving them a quality education? I am in it because I believe in education and educating others, and I intend to still do that, within this mess Ledonne and his cult-followers have created. ----Editor's Reply: Self-reflection seems like a good idea and your point about the length and depth of ASU's problems is well-taken; many within ASU have tried for years to address these challenges through "the proper channels" and gotten nowhere (or worse, been shunned and bullied by peers or supervisors). Ledonne maintains close friendships with many of his colleagues and former students at ASU. In addition to the letter of support signed by his students and peers, Ledonne was consistently ranked above his peer group average on student evaluations, is still asked to write letters of recommendation for former students, has received letters of recommendation from his former department chair and numerous peers, and many students have contacted him to congratulate him on his successful resolution of the ACLU lawsuit. Ledonne's public announcement of the settlement on his Facebook page was "liked" over 265 times and "shared" over 30 times, including by faculty organizations supporting his efforts including Trinity Washington University Part-Time Faculty Union, SEIU 500 CAL, Montgomery College Part Time Faculty Union, Affiliated Faculty of Emerson College-AAUP, New Faculty Majority, and the Higher Education arm of AFT-WV.
August 1, 2016 at 3:51pm Polls, huh? Let's take one on whether "Danny" should be hired at ASU. Oh yes, we already took that poll and the answer was "no." And Beverlee McClure had nothing to do with it. ----Editor's Reply: Danny Ledonne was hired over and over by ASU between 2011-2015, received high student evals and department reviews, helped to create a film festival and student media organization, and supplied multiple letters of recommendation, a letter of support signed by approx. 80 faculty, staff, students and community members to the Board of Trustees. Like many other students and faculty who have left in recent years, so too went Ledonne.
August 1, 2016 at 3:44pm I googled "Arnold Salazar Adams State University" as someone suggested and it worked. Near the top I found an oldie, but goodie! The board's letter to the campus, posted on AcademeBlog and it lists all the names of the board since they all signed it. I bet they regret this now: it was all for our safety and "The university’s actions throughout this situation have been appropriate and defensible." NEITHER appropriate nor defensible. That's why they settled the ACLU LAWSUIT for $100K. They were suckers to believe McClure and now they are paying for it with their reputations. Adams State University Board of Trustees 11/9/15 As the Board of Trustees for Adams State University, we assure you the safety of our campus is of utmost importance. President McClure shares that priority, and we fully support measures she recently took to issue persona non grata status to Danny Ledonne. The action was based on safety concerns and disruptive behavior and taken in conjunction with information from the Colorado Attorney General’s office. The university’s actions throughout this situation have been appropriate and defensible. What began as an unsuccessful application for a faculty position has been distorted. Mr. Ledonne’s freedom of speech is in no way threatened. He has been given every document that he is entitled to under the law, and he continues to freely communicate his concerns through blogs and newspapers. This issue has become a distraction from the work of the university. We urge you, our faculty and staff, to continue in your dedicated work to serve students and move Adams State forward in a positive manner. Sincerely, The Board of Trustees for Adams State University Arnold Salazar, Chair Kathleen Rogers, Vice Chair Paul Farley Mary Griffin LeRoy Salazar Cleave Simpson John Singletary Valentin Vigil Randy Wright
August 1, 2016 at 3:38pm Someone wrote, "The fact that our president showed a folder of "evidence" and then did not prevail in legal proceedings does not mean she lied." Actually President McClure repeatedly told students and faculty that Ledonne was on a "police watch list." There is no such thing as a police watch list. That's a lie and there's really no other way to spin this. McClure also said in the Valley Courier that Ledonne was engaged in "terrorism," a serious Federal offense. That was also a lie. She claimed Ledonne made "direct threats," a prosecutable offense, yet the police cheif admitted in his email that Ledonne has broken no law. This isn't a matter of opinion, these are legal facts and McClure is on the wrong side of them.
August 1, 2016 at 3:30pm When I look at McClure’s track record, what I see is a “disturbing pattern of behavior that has been going on for a long time.” Abuse of power by banning Ledonne. Then slander about Ledonne to justify her actions. Then lies to cover those lies. And most recently, her original press release about the ACLU lawsuit was filled with lies. Not surprisingly, her pattern of lying and slandering people she doesn’t like for her own gain precedes ASU. While representing the business world in New Mexico, she falsely accused a non-profit organization of breaking the law. (The punchline is that the non-profit didn’t even exist in the year she said they broke the law! Not even a good liar, but we know that from the recent press release.) Her false accusations in NM earned her the title of “Worst Person in the World” on a website down there. I think she deserves it again for what she did to Danny Ledonne and everyone she lied to. ASU President Beverlee J. McClure: Worst Person in the World (two-time winner) Given her “disturbing pattern of behavior,” I think she should be banned from campus for the financial and reputational safety of ASU. The ban would be “in response to concerns expressed by faculty, staff, and students” (from the ASU press release!). That’s all it takes, right Bev?
August 1, 2016 at 3:27pm Fantastic, the Standing Strong March is already scheduled for the Friday the Board of Trustees will be here: August 26th!!!
August 1, 2016 at 3:25pm Two quick comments: 1 - There have been calls for the Governor to fire the trustees and the president and replace them. The University of Louisville (I think) is cited as an example. We actually do NOT want any politician to exercise control over the independence of a state university regardless of the reason or cause. Our trustees are selected as a diverse group, men and women, local and distant, Dem and Repub, white and not white. To subordinate them to the Governor would allow a politician to seize control of Adams at another point in time, maybe for political gain, or to censure a freedom, or any other reason. I also suspect the Louisville issue will be contested and will not go as planned. Regardless it is a very bad idea. 2 - The fact that our president showed a folder of "evidence" and then did not prevail in legal proceedings does not mean she lied. She may have believed and been advised by counsel that she had "the goods." The prosecutor in Baltimore thought she had the goods on the police officers involved in Freddie Gray's death. She lost four court cases and dropped the rest. I don't believe she lied, she simply got beat in court. We know that OJ was guilty, but he beat a murder rap. Did the prosecutor lie (?), no, OJ did it, but he won in court. Let's not be too quick to call someone a liar just because a proceeding didn't go their way. We learn over life that proceedings, judicial decisions, trials, grievances, etc., can go many different ways and not always in the precise direction of truth or justice.
August 1, 2016 at 2:51pm Remember the petition some of us had the smarts and guts to sign last year. Looks like we were right. Our president was lying to us about Danny and using our “safety” as her smokescreen. I feel betrayed, imagine how Danny must feel. It’s disgusting. Maybe time for a new petition: remove her. How about a new WatchingAdams poll: Is it time to give president McClure the boot? When will her bosses be here to hear what we have to say? I’d like an explanation from Arnold Salazar, Kathleen Rogers, Paul Farley, Michele Lueck, Wendell Pryor, LeRoy Salazar, Cleave Simpson, John Singletary, and Randy Wright. (Thanks for the tip about using their names.) ----Editor's Reply: We have created a poll with this topic here. The ASU Board of Trustees meets monthly, updated here. Next meeting: August 25-26, 2016 - ASU Campus
August 1, 2016 at 1:47pm I’ll be at the Standing Strong march because I want an apology. But that’s not enough. I plan to vote with my money. I don’t want my hard-earned cash paying president McClure and her bosses. I’m transferring and I'm going to tell my adviser why. I know they won’t do it, but I’m also going to ask for a refund for my last 5 semesters. At the rate McClure is trashing our reputation, pretty soon credits and degrees from ASU won’t be worth much.
August 1, 2016 at 1:35pm You know, what's funny to me is that every so often, someone will comment here about how this website is so ridiculous, everyone is laughing at it, or something like that. Yet all of the articles and documents here link to verified information about the problems ASU has. So I'm not sure I "get" the joke. Maybe they are just laughing nervously, hoping it will all somehow go away, that nobody will expect them to be accountable for all the mistakes the administration has created? But don't worry, "Guaranteed Tuition" will solve everything! That's the real joke.
August 1, 2016 at 12:47pm Dr. McClure has been the model of excellence in lying to the students, to the faculty and staff, and to the community.
August 1, 2016 at 12:24pm Dr. McClure has been a model of excellence for Adams State University! Someone told me, laughing I might add, to check out this website and it's absurdity, so I did. The administrators of this page must know they are the laughing stock of the university, community, and town of Alamosa! I guess it's good for a laugh or two, but nobody takes this ascinine page seriously. Change is coming at ASU, so all the bad apples will be plucked from the basket in record time, as not to spoil the positive, well-supported goals of Dr. McClure and her extraordinary team, like the esteemed Dr Gilmer, the new VPAA, and great ones like the Associate VPAA, Margaret Doell, to name a few. Go, Grizzlies! ----Editor's Reply: Meanwhile, in the real world outside Richardson Hall and the SLV bubble, the university is on academic probation, its credit rating has been downgraded, the State Auditor is reviewing four years of negative financial performance, ASU's enrollment continues to decline, ASU has one of the lowest graduation rates in the state of Colorado, campus services and scholarships are cut, faculty and staff are leaving so quickly that entire departments are being re-hired, and press outlets covering higher education continue to report on multiple controversies involving the ASU administration. But it is all quite funny in a certain sense, yes.
July 30, 2016 at 4:15pm Students: You have absolutely no need to worry about being punished for marching. You may feel like you are at the bottom level on campus, but you have all the power. You pay the bills. Without students, there is no ASU. And enrollment has been dropping for years. ASU is in dire straits financially. President McClure and the administration are cutting services for students: library staffing, sports teams, scholarships, etc. Nonetheless, the president is adding new administrative positions. It’s probably a way to reward her friends (Margaret Doell comes to mind) or payoff folks who have dirt on her regarding the ACLU lawsuit. Plus, a lot of faculty saw through the president's lies, and in the last week many more have seen the light. We are with you, some figuratively, some literally (in the march). She lied to us too.
July 30, 2016 at 4:08pm GO BEVERLEE GO! GO BOT GO! GO BEVERLEE GO! GO BOT GO! GO BEVERLEE GO! GO BOT GO!...
July 30, 2016 at 2:28pm Thanks for the answers to my questions. I approve! I don’t know if the “we” thought about this, but we should end the march on the steps like the faculty did. There will be to many of us to go to McClure’s office and it would be harder for the media to cover it. Plus, I’d love to see her coming out of the building and apologize in public. She used us and I’m pissed. I agree about our right to free speech, just as long as we keep it peaceful. The only thing McClure should fear is losing her job, which personaly I hope she does. We came to ASU to learn but what kind of lessons is she teaching? A lot of people haven’t heard about McClure losing the ACLU lawsuit, but word will spread quickly with the march and the start of the semester. And it will spread with lots of anger. But it has to be peaceful.
July 30, 2016 at 2:20pm Another way to apply pressure to McClure and the Board is to just keep using their names in posts around the web. The WatchingAdams comments, ACLU lawsuit and Danny Ledonne already come up near the top when I search for “Adams State University McClure.” That doesn’t look good for her and it won’t look good for members of the Board if their names start coming up similarly. It will draw attention to what they’ve done and what people think of them. Works best with the right keywords, perhaps Arnold Salazar, Board of Trustees, Adams State University, ACLU lawsuit, Beverlee McClure, Danny Ledonne, First Amendment violation, Fourteenth Amendment violation, etc. All in a short explanation, perhaps: Arnold Salazar of the Adams State University Board of Trustees condoned the lying and slander perpetrated by ASU president Beverlee McClure when she illegally banned Danny Ledonne from campus. McClure denied him his First Amendment rights by limiting his access to campus and violated his Fourteenth Amendment rights by denying him due process. Worse yet, she resorted to slander, lying about him being a risk on multiple occasions in order to cover her tracks. McClure lost an ACLU lawsuit filed on her behalf. In spite of all of this, Arnold Salazar and the Board of Trustees condoned her actions and in a press release characterized them as “no wrongdoing.” Similarly, just searching certain terms makes them more likely to come up, like “moving to Canada” comes up more quickly since Trump is running for President. So search away for things like “Arnold Salazar Adams State University ACLU lawsuit.” Or McClure or other trustees’ names.
July 30, 2016 at 2:04pm Replying to these questions: 1) what if McClure won’t apologize? 2) What if McClure resigns before the march? 3) what do we do if she does apologize before the march? Do we cancel? Great questions and we did think about all of them. Benefits of having a group brainstorm. If no apology: We figure the attention will look terrible and her refusal to apologize would make her look like an even bigger ogre. Plus, we will draw attention to the truth which would help Danny. And maybe we can force the board to apologize if McClure doesn’t have the integrity to do it (which obviously she doesn’t or she would have done it by now, but she will probably do it under pressure). If McClure resigns, Danny’s name still needs to be cleared, so we’ll demand the Board make the apologize and acknowledge McClure’s lies. Again, the march will still bring wider attention to the truth. If she does apologize beforehand, that raises a more basic question: what would an apology need to look like? Answer: We thought it would have to include coming to AS&F, admitting she lied about “acts of terrorism,” the Police Watchlist, direct threats of violence, and implying he could be a school shooter. She would have to send out a new press release saying the same and it would have to go to everyone who covered the story. And she would need to apologize to Danny. Did we miss anything else other people would like to see happen? Then that would put pressure on the Board. Could they live with condoning what she did? If that all happens, then no need for a march, no need to bring more bad publicity to ASU. If all else fails, we could walk out of classes and shut ASU down.
July 30, 2016 at 1:03pm Some thoughts about the protest: should be bigger than what they put up. Should involve faculty, staff, and students. Should ask for BOT to go also. Should have far and wide press coverage. Letters should be signed on spot and sent to the governor. Of course the protests should include genuine grievances and should not have Danny's case in view primarily, but yes the protest should mention Danny's case and how it could have been easily averted. Should also mention HLC and how the students are now into unfamiliar territory because of incompetence at ASU.
July 30, 2016 at 11:59am And here’s another letter, but I haven’t figured out how to contact these people yet. Dear Arnold Salazar, Kathleen Rogers, Paul Farley, Michele Lueck, Wendell Pryor, LeRoy Salazar, Cleave Simpson, John Singletary, Randy Wright (ASU Board of Trustees), You are immoral, unethical, and irresponsible! Either 1) you knew about ASU’s ridiculous, lie-filled press release (posted hear) or 2) you didn’t know about it: 1) If you knew about it, then you are condoning McClure’s mistake and her lies. To say that McClure won the lawsuit is a lie. To say that violating a citizens rights, ruining his reputation, and lying to everyone isn’t wrongdoing is sick! If that’s what you believe, then we need a new president and Board. This whole mess was about lies and you all just keep feeding the public more lies and refusing to fix the damage. You are being immoral and unethical. 2) If you didn’t know about it, then what the hell are you doing? After McClure’s slander (“terrorism”? “police watchlist”? really?) brought an ACLU lawsuit against ASU, you all should be watching her every move and stopping her from making things worse. Like she did with the press release. So, if you didn’t know about it, then you aren’t taking your jobs seriously. Being unethical and irresponsible. If you have an honest, ethical bone in your bodies and if you actually care about students and ASU, then apologize or make president McClure apologize and clear Danny Ledonne’s name. ----Editor's Reply: The Board of Trustees can be contacted via: James Trujillo, Executive Assistant to the President/Board of Trustees (719) 587-7341 firstname.lastname@example.org
July 30, 2016 at 11:57am So, did you all think about this: what if McClure won’t apologize? What if McClure resigns before the march? Hate to be a pain in the butt with all the what-ifs, but what do we do if she does apologize before the march? Do we cancel? I think you / we need a backup plan.
July 30, 2016 at 11:57am I’m deeply embarrassed to admit I was one of the faculty members duped by McClure. I supported her and was even irritated by the people who criticized her. Being truthful, I even said some negative things about them. It’s now clear the whole PNG was a game, an act, a bunch of lies. Thinking back about the police watchlist, the theatrics of her Ledonne file, and the audacity to bring it to student and faculty meetings like a prop, makes me sick. I have lost all confidence and trust and her. Clearly, she will say anything at all to advance her agenda and cover her mistakes. I don’t know how an institution can follow such a leader. Oh, and to the person who thinks this site is all written by a few people, I know you are wrong. My feelings about Danny aside, I’m one example of the soon-to-be many people who are fed up.
July 30, 2016 at 11:38am Standing Strong March… I’m as good as there. Word is spreading quick, a friend just told me to check out watchingadams and it looks like this was just posted. The newspaper idea is great, but don’t forget the radio and TV stations. Now that Danny is allowed back on campus, we should invite Danny to attend, so he can be there for the apology. It would be awesome for thousands of people to hear or watch it!
July 30, 2016 at 11:39am When it comes to the Standing Strong March, don’t forget Chief Grohowski and those Board folks: Arnold Salazar, Kathleen Rogers, Paul Farley, Michele Lueck, Wendell Pryor, LeRoy Salazar, Cleave Simpson, John Singletary, Randy Wright.
July 30, 2016 at 10:34am Here's a letter I just sent to our governor. Feel free to copy or modify and send by mail or email. Address: Governor John Hickenlooper, 200 E Colfax Ave #136, Denver, CO 80203 Email: https://www.colorado.gov/governor/ask-help (Totally confidential if you check the box at the bottom!) Dear Governor Hickenlooper, Please pay attention to what has been happening at Adams State University. Our president, Beverly McClure, violated a great professors constitutional rights (Danny Ledonne) by banning him from our campus, fired him, lied about him to ruin his reputation, and then lied to everyone (students, employees, newspapers, the public) to hide her mistake. She just lost an ACLU lawsuit and had to pay $100,000 to Danny. However, she and the Board of Trustees (Arnold Salazar, Kathleen Rogers, Paul Farley, Michele Lueck, Wendell Pryor, LeRoy Salazar, Cleave Simpson, John Singletary, Randy Wright) claim they won the case, even though they had to pay Danny and allow him back on campus. Even more immoral and unethical, they claim there was no wrongdoing. As if violating a citizens rights, ruining his reputation, and lying to everyone isn’t wrongdoing! If that’s what they believe, then we need a new president and Board. Please fire these people (like Kentucky governor Matt Bevin did at Louisville) and appoint people who are honest, ethical, and care about students. Thank You, (Add your name)
July 30, 2016 at 10:12am Standing Strong for an Apology March to Richardson Hall Friday, August 26th, 12:00 noon Start: In front of Nielsen Library Purpose: To force president McClure to come clean by admitting her lies to students, employees, and the community. To admit Danny Ledonne was never a threat to anyone in order to clear his name and restore his reputation. To insist the president apologize to everyone she lied to and used by claiming she was acting to ensure our safety. To insist the president apologize to Danny Ledonne. A bunch of us discussed the options and decided the AS&F resolution is a great idea, but it could take a while. So, let’s do the march without waiting for the resolution. We thought the first day of class would be kinda cool, but we’ll need more time to spread the word. Therefore, we are proposing the first Friday of classes (8/26), unless someone has a better idea. The Valley Courier covered the faculty’s march to support president McClure, so we will contact them to cover our march. In fact, we’ll Google to see all the newspapers and websites that covered the ACLU lawsuit and contact them in advance. We will also plaster the classrooms, doors, and bulletin boards with posters and fliers, just like McClure’s supporters did. Whoever started this idea mentioned the possibility of the president stopping us. We don’t think that’s likely. She just finished dealing with one lawsuit over free speech, plus with the media attention, it would look horrible. We have the right to march and be heard. The president and board treated us like children, assuming we would believe whatever they told us, like “just ignore what’s going on and focus on your work.” We will show them they were wrong. We paid attention to their unethical games and now we will make ourselves heard. Standing Strong for the Truth Standing Strong for the Constitution Standing Strong for Free Speech Standing Strong for Retracting the President’s Lies Standing Strong for restoring Danny Ledonne’s reputation SPREAD THE WORD!
Editor's Note: Clarifying the 7/29/16 addendum to the ASU press release - “Clarifying Facts: Ledonne vs. McClure et al.” “Ledonne filed a motion for a preliminary injunction, arguing that his due process rights were violated. After a full day of hearing testimony, Judge Moore denied that motion.” The ACLU filed a motion for preliminary injunction based on the the assertion that Ledonne had utter lack of due process prior to being banned from campus, including a failure to be notified of the allegations against him or a reasonable opportunity to respond before an impartial decision-maker, and a denial of his right to receive information and attend events on a public university campus. After the motion was denied, the ACLU appealed this motion, restating their claims and introducing additional case law to support these claims. The parties began preparing for a jury trial. During this time, the plaintiffs and defendants began the process of discovery – during which the ACLU acquired the entirety of the documents believed to be President McClure's “file” on Ledonne. The defendants and plaintiffs were scheduling depositions for mid-July, should mediation be unsuccessful. Upon reviewing the documents obtained during discovery, ACLU of Colorado Legal Director Mark Silverstein stated: “Throughout the course of the litigation, Adams State University was not able to produce a single piece of evidence that Danny Ledonne ever engaged in any threats of violence, direct or indirect, toward anyone or anything at the university... The University had no legitimate basis for banning Mr. Ledonne from campus, nor did university officials have any factual basis for the stigmatizing and derogatory characterizations of Mr. Ledonne that they communicated to the university community and the public.” “While statements have been made that he was a professor, Ledonne was never employed as a tenure-track faculty member. Instead, he was on a one-year, temporary contract that ended May 2015. He was not an employee of Adams State University when he was issued the persona non grata.” No one has claimed that Ledonne was ever “a tenure track professor” but have consistently maintained that Ledonne taught in the Mass Communication department between 2011-2015, first as an adjunct instructor from 2011-2014 and then as a visiting assistant professor from 2014-2015. Moreover, Ledonne's employment status with ASU is immaterial to the claims of the case; Ledonne has a right to access the public areas of the university campus unless deprived of such by due process of law. “On two occasions, Ledonne applied for a tenure-track faculty position which he did not receive. Ultimately, a faculty search committee filled the position with a highly qualified individual.” The 2014 search (in which Ledonne was a semi-finalist) resulted in failure when none of the finalists accepted the position, though the university refused to consider Ledonne's application for the position while nonetheless offering him a one year visiting assistant professor position. Ledonne again applied for the full time position when it became available. Upon investigating the 2015 search (in which Ledonne was not in consideration for the position), Ledonne's Office of Equal Opportunity complaint alleged that the search committee exercised undo bias against his application. After obtaining his application scoresheets through an open records request in May 2015, Ledonne maintained that he discovered “technical, factual, and procedural errors” with the 2015 search process and sought to redress these grievances with the new OEO director in September 2015, who refused to meet with him to discuss the matter though Ledonne had been assured by the previous OEO director that the case remained open. Ledonne was told he could not meet because he was not an employee, though the case had been filed when Ledonne was an employee. The faculty member hired during the 2015 faculty search then left Adams State University after teaching the spring 2016 semester. “The settlement with ACLU has a provision that Ledonne is to have no contact with a female professor who was on the selection committee that chose another candidate. This restriction from contact is for a one-year period.” Ledonne has not had any form of contact with this professor since June 2015 upon completion of his teaching contract and the university never provided any evidence to the contrary despite banning him from campus in October 2015. Ledonne fully intends to honor this provision as he has already been doing so without any outside direction for the past year. “As part of the settlement, the University's insurance carrier agreed to pay a portion of the ACLU attorneys' fees. By doing so, this allowed the University to focus on its mission, rather than continued litigation. The agreement ultimately saved the University time and money.” Both parties agreed to the terms of mediation as being more favorable than ongoing litigation. As reported in the Valley Courier, ACLU of Colorado Legal Director Mark Silverstein said although the university was not writing a check to Ledonne personally, he would receive about $65,000 out of the $100,000 ASU would be remitting to the ACLU. "The $100,000 settlement resolves Mr. Ledonne's claim for damages and attorneys fees,"Silverstein said. "We keep only one-third for the attorneys fees. The rest of it goes to Mr. Ledonne. He will get about $65,000." The attorney said ASU's insurance company would write a check to ACLU for $100,000, which ACLU would put into a client trust account. Out of that account, ACLU will reimburse a cooperating attorney for some expenses and write a check from the client trust account to Ledonne. “After the Board of Trustees failed to create an unfunded position specifically for him at his request at the October 2, 2015, meeting, Ledonne posted a number of articles critical of Adams State University. The University has continuously complied with all of Ledonne's requests for information, regardless of the intended use of the information, and even after the issuance of the persona non grata. The persona non grata did not impact his access to information, nor did it restrain his ability to advocate his position – he continued to have access to University records.” In April 2015, Ledonne first proposed the creation of a new position to then-President David Svaldi. This would have been a half-time teaching and half-time performing video production services (as had been the case since May 2011). Ledonne characterized this as a "win-win" to avoid further dispute regarding the hiring process. Ledonne was encouraged by the president to speak to the Board of Trustees about this proposal and Ledonne did so in May 2015, at which time he also presented letters of recommendation and a letter of support from approximately 80 students, staff, faculty and community members. This request was not granted. Ledonne appeared before the Board in October 2015 to request mediation for his hiring concerns. Twelve days later, Ledonne was served a No Trespass Order, threatening him with arrest were he to set foot onto University property. As argued by the ACLU, this No Trespass Order impacted Ledonne's ability to attend events and activities on the ASU campus as well as access the university's library. Further, the ACLU argued the many unproven claims by the ASU administration that Ledonne “threatened” individuals and was banned for “campus safety” created an unwarranted stigma against Ledonne in the Alamosa community. The ACLU took Ledonne's case pro-bono because they strongly believed his First Amendment rights to receive information and attend events open to the public were being violated without due process under law. “Ledonne will only have the same access to the campus that other members of the general public have.” Yes, this is precisely what the ACLU lawsuit sought to resolve and Ledonne is pleased with this resolution. Adams State University has not explained, if Ledonne was indeed a threat to campus safety, how mediation has addressed this issue in once again granting Ledonne access to the public areas of the ASU campus.
July 29, 2016 at 7:43pm I am embarrassed to call myself an alumni of Adams State after reading all of this. More importantly I am saddened and disappointed in the lack of leadership at the school which for many aspiring kids is the only option for them to attain a higher education. The leadership and trustees have destroyed for many their only hope for a better life. I hope the state of Colorado takes over Adams State and cleans house of the political hacks and incompetence there. Only then will positive change occur.
July 29, 2016 at 8:58am On Monday July 25th, Adams State University issued a press release about a settlement reached between the university and the American Civil Liberties Union. At dispute had been former faculty member Danny Ledonne's banning from campus and the university’s failure to follow its own policies and procedures in providing Ledonne with due process prior to imposing the ban. The press release clearly set out to deceive readers. Below is a list of the falsehoods published by ASU’s administration: Fiction #1 The ASU press release said that, in mediation between ASU and the ACLU, Judge William F. Downes “ultimately decided in favor of Adams State, after nearly a year of controversy.” The Judge did no such thing. The role of a judge in mediation is to get the parties to agree on a settlement, not to decide in favor of either party. However, ACLU’s Colorado Legal Director Mark Silverstein sums up: “By summarily banning Danny from a public campus and falsely labeling him a security threat, without providing any opportunity to rebut the false allegations, the university deprived him of due process and unjustifiably retaliated against him for his constitutionally-protected criticism of university practices.” Fiction #2 The ASU press release “clarified that the ACLU did not “win” the case.” There are no judgments for or against either party in a settlement. Having established that, if the ACLU didn't prevail in their efforts to represent Ledonne, why did ASU lift the No Trespass Order and pay $100,000 in settlement? To put it another way, if Ledonne and the ACLU had “lost,” why are they are not paying ASU and why isn't the campus ban still in effect? ASU agreed to lift the trespass ban and allow Danny Ledonne back on campus with the same rights as any other member of this community. The primary objective of this case was to achieve that; surely a win for Ledonne. Fiction #3 The ASU press release claimed that the university is not really paying the $100,000 - only a $2,500 deductible - because ASU’s insurance company is actually paying. The press release purposely ignores the fact that the lawsuit was against ASU, not its insurance company. ASU is simply passing on the bill for the settlement. Fiction #4 According to the ASU press release, “Danny Ledonne was not compensated by the university.” This is a distinction without a difference, as with the previous statement regarding ASU's deductible being its only cost. According to Silverstein with the ACLU, about $64,000 of the $100,000 settlement goes to Ledonne. Fiction #5 According to the ASU press release, “the ban was in response to concerns expressed by faculty, staff, and students.” The reality is that not one piece of evidence - not a single document, not an email, not a single police complaint, not a witness statement, not a restraining order, not a voice message, not a tittle, not a jot - was presented in court to substantiate ASU’s assertions that Ledonne made “threats” against anyone. During litigation, ASU called zero witnesses and entered zero exhibits into evidence. So without any evidence, ASU agreed to out-of-court settlement because a case with no evidence was not likely to prevail in a court of law. And even with such evidence, it was plainly obvious that Ledonne was not afforded due process or a reasonable opportunity to be heard prior to being banned. Silverstein, having reviewed all of the material provided during discovery, including McClure's “thick file,” stated: “Throughout the course of the litigation, Adams State University was not able to produce a single piece of evidence that Danny Ledonne ever engaged in any threats of violence, direct or indirect, toward anyone or anything at the university,” said Silverstein. “The University had no legitimate basis for banning Mr. Ledonne from campus, nor did university officials have any factual basis for the stigmatizing and derogatory characterizations of Mr. Ledonne that they communicated to the university community and the public.” Fiction #6 According to the ASU press release, “no fault was found against Adams State University or the administration.” This of course is the caveat that some of the most cavalier, corrupt and amoral organizations use when they get caught out. When the Department of Justice threatens prosecution, the Masters of the Universe - financiers who lied and cheated, and brought the US world economy to the brink of collapse - seek out-of-court settlements. The likes of JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup, and Bank of America have paid out over $150 billion in bank fines and penalties, but all with the caveat that doing so was not an admission of guilt. ASU’s Masters of the University following the same line. Fiction #7 The last paragraph of the ASU press release claims that ASU “is a strong supporter of a diverse on-campus community.” But the worm that eats to the core of the institution is that, in fact, there is absolutely no tolerance for diverse views. Regardless of race, color or creed, if you say “negative” stuff, you are drubbed. Watching Adams has documented this on any number of occasions during the 2015-2016 academic year. In practice, one is only considered part of the ASU community if they agree with what the administration says and does. Disagree, or call them to account, and you are badgered or ostracized until you leave, as the Masters spin it, “for personal reasons” or “for better opportunities.” And if you don't leave, you'll be banned from campus under patently false pretenses. *** The press releases lack of truthfulness was greeted by incredulity or downright derision. Even employees who had initially sided with the administration because they believed that the university must have had evidence to support its claim that Ledonne was a security threat could no longer countenance the institution’s rhetoric. They felt betrayed. The Watching Adams website comments page has been inundated with notes of outrage, many calling for President McClure and Board Trustees’ resignations. Such was the magnitude of protest that ASU removed the press release from its website two days later. A few hours later, it appeared again, edited, the day after that. Some untruths had been deleted, others had been modified. But essentially the message is the same. The message is that there will be no soul-searching for a better way of mediating employee concerns or addressing dissenting views in an accompanying manner. There is no hint that ASU will begin to fairly and evenly apply its own policies and procedures and that if you step out of line, the institution will come down on you, unrepentant, like a ton of bricks. These punishments will continue until ASU leadership changes its course.
July 28, 2016 at 10:25pm The revision of the University press release, as a direct result of fact checking from without, clearly demonstrates that the current administration is continuing the tradition of an absence of integrity that has been the hallmark of ASU administration for years. As for Novotny’s departure from academic administration, it does not require any special judgment on President McClure’s part to recognize the toxic effect of his bullying incompetence on academic affairs. It is singularly due to President Svaldi’s negligence, proceeding from his imminent retirement, that Novotny was allowed to remain in the position of VPAA. In any case - no more Mr. Big Shot. Good riddance. It’s about time. Similarly, President Svaldi did not address Mumper’s obvious administrative incompetence due to negligence derived from his impending retirement.
July 28, 2016 at 8:46pm Allow me to offer a few observations from one who has as friends employees of the college, both faculty and staff. First, it is clear the press release and web posting was botched. We all know Adams is very poorly represented in the media and the PR department has little expertise other than to promote a program or publish pictures. Changes need to be made and soon. However, it is important to note changes that have been made that my friends told me were needed. I guess everyone knew our recruiting and advertising administrator did little more than hold meetings with no production. I understand he has been demoted to a teacher. Likewise, the faculty have said they had no confidence in the academic administrator, and he has been demoted to a teacher and I understand that all employees had good input into hiring a new person. Where is the praise for Dr. McClure for those long needed actions? Everyone in the community knew the leader of new student programs needed to go, and I hear he has. There was a reported "toxic" person in tutoring and I guess she is gone. And the nice woman who did nothing and was granted a leave to get her degree has been released. These changes have come from the new president but I see no praise for her actions. Regarding the legal action, if you know much about them, this one was a yawner. An FBI folder full of evidence didn't do any good against Hillary, so don't be surprised that the college president's folder full of evidence resulted in no action. Insurance companies make these decisions - and this one was small change. Many of us in town applaud Dr. McClure for just getting it behind us. Besides, isn't it true that the professor was rejected by his own department? Move on. Some of you have written about Adams State's reputation and called it a clown school. This is true only if you are a clown and working there. Like the clown I heard about who secretly audiotaped his "friends" and colleagues in a meeting. He should resign, not the president. What a lowlife. The real reputation for Adams State is one of a school that brings art and music, drama and sport to our little valley and we cherish that. It brings smart professors who teach students from all over the world, and provides opportunity for so many who are poor or otherwise disadvantaged. It would be nice if some of you, a minority I'm sure would recognize that and actually do the work deserving of the reputation. And not be the clowns. I know many of the trustees and they are good people who work hard. They have confidence in Dr. McClure and many of us have confidence in her. So please put this little problem sniped about by little people behind us and start your school year in September with a good attitude. That would help us be supportive of you too. The downtown community does pay attention to this. Thank you.
July 28, 2016 at 5:21pm Editor's Note: After being offline for approximately 24 hours, ASU has updated their press release in response to the ACLU lawsuit. In comparing the two versions: redacted and updated, here are the changes we have found: 1. Headline changed: "Mediation decides in favor of Adams State University" -> "Adams State University satisfied with results of mediation" 2. Statement removed: "After completing successful arbitration, Adams State University was found to have no wrongdoing..." 3. Statement removed: "William F. Downes, a retired judge, oversaw the mediation and ultimately decided in favor of Adams State, after nearly a year of controversy." These changes do not mention the $100,000 settlement amount. More importantly, the statement makes no mention of the No Trespass Order being lifted - which was the central claim of the lawsuit and the very first clause of the settlement agreement with which ASU claims it is "satisfied." The statement omits any mention of "direct and indirect threats against individuals and the campus as a whole" or similar claims that President McClure repeatedly used to justify the ban. Instead, the press release introduces the legally-innocuous phrase "concerns expressed by faculty, staff, and students." The university continues to emphasize "No fault was found against Adams State University or the administration" when "no admission of wrongdoing" by either party was a clause in the settlement agreement.
July 28, 2016 at 12:12pm The insurance company and the office of the Colorado Attorney General SETTLED because they didn't want to take Beverly's case to court because she LIED. She had NOTHING. ASU has a long history of defamation, abuse and oppression. The university's (now removed) response is a clear indication that they will continue with their abusive practices and have learned nothing. The reputation ASU is cultivating is well earned.
July 28, 2016 at 8:22am ASU statement: "William F. Downes, a retired judge, oversaw the mediation and ultimately decided in favor of Adams State University..." Isn't this CONTEMPT OF COURT?
July 28, 2016 at 7:57am You guys are pathetic! Everyone on campus knows that the "information" posted on this site comes from DL and a handful of disgruntled employees. The vast majority of the ASU community supports Dr. McClure. ----Editor's Reply: The information posted on this site comes from publicly-available documents (such as the HLC Academic Probation, Moody's credit downgrade, Office of the State Auditor, press outlets covering higher education, public employee salary data, university meeting minutes, and other public records).
July 28, 2016 at 6:39am Beverlee and her administration keep on making mistakes and more mistakes. I have now started to believe that BOT is as much involved and responsible for the mess ASU is in. I have lost confidence in McClure's leadership, her administration, and the BOT.
July 27, 2016 at 10:01pm It's amateur hour at the Gong Show. Welcome to the clown college.
July 27, 2016 at 5:26pm The University has now removed their own press release from the ASU news website, which addressed the Ledonne settlement. This action only makes one wonder what they continue to hide. I'm sure the goal is to keep current and future students, as well as parents, in the dark. On another note, has anyone noticed how Beverlee's cronies have gone silent in sharing articles about the settlement? They sure were quick to pass along news regarding court proceedings when it painted the University in a positive light. ----Editor's Reply: The page used to be online here but has been removed. The page still comes up in a search index though the content has been removed. The press release remains online here at Watching Adams.
July 27, 2016 at 3:04pm I think people are reasonably confused at this point. If Ledonne was a threat, is he no longer a threat? Why or why not? From the ACLU: “Throughout the course of the litigation, Adams State University was not able to produce a single piece of evidence that Danny Ledonne ever engaged in any threats of violence, direct or indirect, toward anyone or anything at the university,” said Silverstein. “The University had no legitimate basis for banning Mr. Ledonne from campus, nor did university officials have any factual basis for the stigmatizing and derogatory characterizations of Mr. Ledonne that they communicated to the university community and the public.” From Westword: "University officials continue to maintain that declaring Ledonne persona non grata was not an act of retaliation but "in response to concerns expressed by faculty, staff and students." The statement does not explain why, if the ban was based on legitimate security concerns, those concerns are no longer an issue."
July 27, 2016 at 12:58pm I suggest people go back and read the op-ed that circulated last fall and later published on Watching Adams: ASU Administration Fails to Act in Students’ Best Interests And also about the court case and why ASU would lose in court, probably why they settled before going to trial: Beverlee’s Bluff: the Real Threat to ASU
July 27, 2016 at 12:37pm President McClure and the Board are such hippocrits! We have a handbook that tells us the rules and how we will be punished for violating them: including dishonesty. If we did what McClure did we would fail a course, be put on probation, or kicked out of school. But if you run a company or a university, I guess there are no repercussions. Great role models, one and all! McClure: F (for Failure or Fraud) McClure: E (for Expel her) Board: S (for Spineless)
July 27, 2016 at 12:24pm I didn't really understand what / who this Board of Trustees / BOT was, so I looked them up. Maybe having them identified by name, rather than some anonymous group may get their attention. Arnold Salazar Kathleen Rogers Paul Farley Michele Lueck Wendell Pryor LeRoy Salazar Cleave Simpson John Singletary Randy Wright Now we know the names of the leaders who support liars and claim lying in order to ruin a person's reputation is not "wrongdoing." These people have no morality, if they think the president's behavior is OK. Disgusting!
July 27, 2016 at 12:19pm I love the idea of an AS&F resolution. She not only lied to us, she USED US by claiming her ban was for our safety, rather than the safety of her image. This was mentioned like a year ago in an article posted here (sure Ledone must know which one). Editor's Reply: Likely referring to this 11/7/15 Valley Courier article. How about a Standing Strong march to deliver the AS&F resolution to her office door? Faculty had that farce of a pep rally to support their lying president. If we do it to force her to apologize and clear Ledone's name, I bet they would try to stop it. They trampled his free speech rights, they would be willing to trample ours. Standing Strong for: - students - Truth - integrity - Danny Ledone
July 27, 2016 at 12:03pm The governor replacing a president and entire board is in progress in Kentucky. Great idea, ASU's board backed McClure's lies. They have no ethics and no respect for the community. "Gov. Matt Bevin announced Friday that embattled University of Louisville President James Ramsey will step down, and in a sweeping act of executive power, the governor also fired the university's divided board of trustees and will replace it with members of his own choosing."
July 27, 2016 at 11:45am Whether the ACLU lawsuit against president McClure (and lets not forget Chief Grohowski) cost ASU $2500 or $100,000 matters little in comparison to the other costs: - She lied, no one can trust her. - Thousands of hours of wasted time. According to an article posted here, McClure stated "ASU Administration has been wasting something like 150 hours per week." And that was before the lawsuit even started! Imagine the time spent producing documents for the lawsuit discovery. Add to that all the time wasted by employees and students arguing and gossiping. - Bad press. More in a year riddled with bad press (HLC probation, unprecedented third-party audit, declining enrollment, credit downgrade by Moody's) - Strife on campus as employees took sides, damaged relationships. I don't know if trust on campus has ever been lower.
July 27, 2016 at 11:38am President McClure came to an AS&F meeting and she lied to us! Her claims of a police watchlist and threats to harm us were all lies. I think we should write an AS&F resolution demanding she apologize to students and Ledonne. She needs to make this right by admitting she lied and clearing his name.
July 27, 2016 at 10:53am I hope the ACLU press release was found by the Chronicle of Higher Education and they run a front page story on ASU as a bogus university and authoritarian regime.
July 26, 2016 at 1:46pm McClure must resign. Immediately. If the BOT does not tell her to resign the governor should fire all members of the BOT and appoint a new board.
July 26, 2016 at 12:37am
July 26, 2016 at 11:12am Can McClure inform us more about Mr. Leddone's folder, state patrol watch list, why she equated him with "terrorism," and clarification of ASU's statement about $2,500 settlement as opposed to $100,000 paid to the plaintiff mentioned by multiple news reports? We are waiting President McClure for your response. Show us that you are fit to lead Adams State University. Let us know why you lied and how you are going to build trust again at ASU?
July 26, 2016 at 9:04am Wow, after reading Adams State official statement and the articles from four different news sources I would say that the Administration is delusional and they must think they are Hillary and can lie without repercussion. What do you think was in that big folder of evidence against Danny that many on campus were shown and told not to worry we've got the goods on Danny. Rubbish!
July 25, 2016 at 6:36pm ASU president should resign. University is not only facing the outcome of Ledonne case fiasco, but her mismanagement of HLC probation and declining enrollments this fall. Beverlee is not fit to be a president of any university.
July 25, 2016 at 6:10pm McClure is a joke! Just swallow your damn pride and apologize now. How dare you throw the word "terrorism" around so lightly! Have you no conscience? Who was whispering falsehood in your ear? We know you didn't act alone.
July 25, 2016 at 4:06pm OMG! How much more LAME or untrue can the university be with regard to their "response" to the ACLU press release?! Come on McClure! Be a damn leader by doing the right thing! Admit you're wrong, APOLOGiZE ( to Danny and our entire university and Alamosa communities), and move on!
July 25, 2016 at 3:44pm I agree with the comment about the need for a new BOT. They have been asleep at the wheel, shirking their responsibilities. Instead of setting McClure straight when she screws up and calling her on her lies, they rally support and offer her a 3-year contract. It makes no sense and shows a lack of respect for ASU and students.
July 25, 2016 at 3:02pm I say we need a new BOT AND a new President.
July 25, 2016 at 2:47pm ASU's "damage control" spin on the ACLU lawsuit is a joke, much like McClure's decision to ban Ledonne. They claim "a retired judge ... ultimately decided in favor of Adams State" and "Ledonne was not compensated by the University." Sure, that's why Danny is allowed back on campus, and we all know our insurance companies always pay out money when we win our cases. More bullshit from the ultimate bullshitters! Pure and simple facts: there was no evidence that Danny was a threat and the PNG violated his civil rights; that's why the PNG was lifted (never mentioned in ASU's statement) and ASU's insurance paid for McClure's mistakes - including her defamatory lies about Danny. The BOT needs to find a new president.
July 25, 2016 at 2:46pm McClure and ASU cost taxpayers $100,000 and tarnished ASU's reputation not only statewide but regionally.
July 25, 2016 at 1:37pm Beverlee McClure's lies have been exposed. ASU lost its case against Ledonne. McClure is unfit to lead ASU and her presidency presents a clear and present danger to Adams State University.
June 21, 2016 at 7:52pm I am a former ASU student who was acquainted with Danny Ledonne during my freshman year in 2011. I have recently discovered this website and would like to alert you to another aspect of ASU's conduct which you might be interested in including here. While I understand that this website was originally set up to monitor ASU's salary policy, the administration's corruption and abuse goes far, far beyond compensation packages. They victimize students as well as faculty. I was one such student, and it still haunts me five years later. I feel compelled to reach out about it now after learning about the way that they have treated Danny.
June 14, 2016 at 9:01pm Faculty are reminded that they serve as role models. If they engage in activities that negatively reflect on the institution they will be reprimanded and possibly fired depending on the seriousness of the incident. I think administrators should be held to even higher standards. A department chair racking up points due to drinking and driving reflects negatively on the institution. Holding department meetings in bars with the chair and some faculty enjoying alcohol probably violate some institutional rule or state law. But then who cares? ASU is out of control and needs to have a complete and total make over. The board, president, HR department, and many department chairs need to be sent packing. To those who think this is anonymous, petty, scandal mongering check it all out. Investigate. Private behavior of public officials is subject to review and investigation. If you were a parent of a senior high school student and you knew all that has come to light regarding ASU would you encourage your child to enroll there? Seriously? Sure, be a ....... major and study under a character flawed alcoholic. Learn about what makes the US "exceptional" and then learn about repression, violations of rights and due process by an unqualified university president. And if your child is female, please investigate sexual assaults on and off campus, especially those the powers at ASU try to hide and sweep under the carpet. Talk to the former chief of campus police. Do NOT send your daughter to ASU until this place is cleaned of the dirty, incompetent, duplicitous administrators and coaches that turn a blind eye to sexual assaults against female students.
June 12, 2016 at 5:38pm I want to hear more about "wives" in HR department! They are notoriously under performing. Who is your daddy?
June 8, 2016 at 11:49am Anonymity is indeed a double-edged blade and this forum would be better for eschewing mere gossip. Nevertheless, DUI is not a disease but a choice indicative of poor judgment by a person occupying three leadership positions. Similarly, infidelity is indicative of a lack of integrity which has been the hallmark of the administration at ASU.
June 7, 2016 at 8:45pm Anonymity is a two-edged sword. On the one hand, anonymity is an indispensible condition for candid discussion about the repressive, oppressive, dysfunctional organization that is Adams State. Gratitude to the manager of this site for providing faculty and staff with a forum for speaking safely about the truly tragic state of Adams. On the other hand, anonymity is also a privilege. Like all privileges it comes with attending responsibilities, including the responsibility to keep the conversation on a higher plane, on a level worthy of an institution of higher education. Using this forum to attack individuals on private matters and personal foibles isn’t just inappropriate – it directly undermines the far more pertinent and more serious matters being raised on this site. Commenters have made repeated direct appeals to “higher powers” – the Board of Trustees, the Attorney General, the Colorado DHE, the HLC, and more – but how can any of these organizations take appeals seriously if they’re intermixed with low, pointless accusations like alcoholism (a disease, not a character flaw) and infidelity (so not anyone’s business)? I value this forum, even if mostly as a lurker. I believe it can contribute to the positive change we all so desperately desire, but IF and only if we use this forum as a tool to speak responsibly - with force and candor, but also respect and discretion - about what we know to be true, that - Adams State is in a tragic state of decline, a decline that can be directly attributed to ASU’s “leadership” - a corrupt, petty, ineffective bunch of cronyistic “administrators” and their pathetic coterie of faculty enablers. They have taken advantage of ASU’s geographic isolation to rabidly and unethically stuff their pockets for years while the ship wanders off course, slowly but unmistakably sinking. And woe to any who dare point out that the ship is off course and sinking. The wiser ones silently jump ship, and their numbers are rapidly growing. If any of those aforementioned outside organizations is listening (is anyone out there listening?), yes – it’s REALLY THAT BAD. Hope you’re listening. ----Editor's Reply: While lurid personal gossip is indeed an appeal of anonymous speech, we have focused our reporting and documentation on some of the structural issues which we believe are the central problems with Adams State University. We would welcome and encourage further discourse on these larger issues but recognize that an open discussion forum will hold different kinds of interest to different readers.
June 6, 2016 at 11:03pm So much drama, dirt, corruption, cheating, and sleaze going on at ASU. If taxpayers only knew the corruption, waste, hypocrisy, and financial improprieties that take place as a regular practice under the not-so-watchful eye of an asleep at the wheel Board. Not to mention drunkards serving as department chairs, marital cheaters in administration, floozies in HR, privileges given to athletes and coaches, unsanitary conditions in food services, illegal drugs rampant in the dorms, and sexual assaults as almost a pre-condition for men's basketball and football. It is truly shameful.
May 31, 2016 at 9:47am Mumper also is receiving his administrative salary who has returned to his political science teaching job. In regards to Novonty's wife, don't you mean "wives" with the other one in HR?????
May 24, 2016 at 3:18pm The VPAA's wife? Well that's pretty much an in-your-face money grab - and an obvious conflict of interest!
May 22, 2016 at 8:22pm I suspect it would be very interesting to learn which instructors have been guilty of this blatant exploitation of Extended Studies as a self-serving revenue stream - at the expense of institutional integrity and endangering accreditation. That's not hard to figure out: Novotny's wife, teaching English. No wonder Frank was Extended Studies biggest fan! It lined his pockets for years. Aldrich's wife, teaching Math. She wasn't retained, but who cares when it comes to teaching online! Probably a few folks in Business too. Someone a while back posted about a prof teaching 9 or 10 hours a day during the 3-week May session. That's like a 45 credit load. Superhuman. Or Super-greedy. Guess that's happening right now for anyone who cares to sit in a few classes to observe academic rigor at its finest. No worries, everything has been fixed. McClure flew to Chicago to meet with the HLC and I'm sure all is well. Notice how quickly ASU was removed from probation? Oh, wait... that hasn't happened.
May 19, 2016 at 4:40pm Given that HLC specifically cited grossly over-enrolled Extended Studies courses as a point of concern with respect to reasonable expectation of academic rigor and student/instructor interaction, I suspect it would be very interesting to learn which instructors have been guilty of this blatant exploitation of Extended Studies as a self-serving revenue stream - at the expense of institutional integrity and endangering accreditation. From the perspective of administrative oversight, might there be an obvious conflict of interest?
May 19, 2016 at 9:05am I have really enjoyed the rat face and pumpkin head show; it has been entertaining but it is time for it to end. They are real pygmies among men.........
May 18, 2016 at 2:06pm Now that Novotny has been "resigned," I wonder why Roybal, the director of Extended Studies, still has a job. Roybal was Notovtny's hire and they both ran the ES program into the ground and landed ASU on academic probation. He should have been "resigned" along with Novotny. Also if it true that Novotny will return to chemistry as an instructor with a significant portion of his administrative salary intact, that is a travesty. This sort of "golden parachute" arrangement should not occur in a publicly funded institution of higher education. It hurts faculty morale and is unfair to students and taxpayers who are footing the bill for an overpriced chemistry instructor.
May 18, 2016 at 1:46pm I see that Svaldi has his home for sale. I guess that he is gathering his loot and getting ready to blow town after he and his cronies have driven ASU to the brink of financial ruin. One wonders how a mediocre instructor, a non-scholar and obviously not a shining administrative star attained the ASU presidency. It reflects poorly on the individuals who made that important decision. I guess it is time to move Svaldi's official portrait from the main hall in Richardson to the bathroom wall where it belongs.
May 10, 2016 at 7:07am According to May 7 article in the Pueblo Chieftain the six year graduation rate for all Colorado public universities is 41.4 percent for Hispanics. At ASU it is just 22.2 percent, probably the lowest in the state, and we call ourselves: Hispanic Serving Institution!
May 9, 2016 at 7:21pm I know Dr. Crowther. I have spoken to several faculty who have had him as chair for over a decade. He is NOT pro-faculty. He has two allegiances. First, to his own advancement and interests. Second. to administration. He does not care about faculty. He is authoritarian as chair. If you disagree with him his response will eventually be, "If we do what you want we will all be out of jobs. We are already being looked at as a department that could be eliminated." If you don't believe me, listen to him in faculty senate meetings. He is a manipulative, deceitful. liar. He will smile at you as he twists a knife in your back. This is the man who now has power over two departments and faculty senate. If senators are afraid of Crowther and administration,. then my advice is just boycott meetings. Don't go. Have a headache. Have child care issues. Have a physician's appointment. Please do not collaborate with this narcissistic, authoritarian. back stabbing, manipulative, power seeking. ambitious phony.
May 7, 2016 at 10:02pm Anyone out there - has President McClure admitted to anyone about her making a single mistake on the job in her first year? Any mistake at all?
May 4, 2016 at 9:26pm I read that the Board extended President McClure's contract. Is that anything other than an arrogant slap in the face to those who are concerned with faculty rights, due process, transparency, honesty, and integrity? Some want to go back and blame David Svaldi for the financial situation. I suggest the Board has been negligent. I think there needs to be wholesale changes to the Board, a new president, and the state should appoint someone to do a full investigation and write a report on what is and has been going on at ASU.
May 2, 2016 at 10:32am Looking at the audit information posted on this site, it seems that the previous president did a lot of harm to the university. Thanks for putting up this information here which is easily accessible!
May 1, 2016 at 3:54pm Adams may not be open long enough for most of us to finish our careers, much less start one here.
April 30, 2016 at 8:02am I have always wanted to work at Adams, after reading documents and comments on here, I'm not so sure I should pursue a career at Adams.
April 29, 2016 at 4:05pm Today's CEC (Classified Employee Council) general meeting was a joke. Once again, McClure danced around several very direct and specific questions. I guess we all should get used to that deer caught in the headlights look. It is plainly obvious she hasn't a clue what she's talking about and continues her practice of divisiveness. The future of ASU is looking more bleak.
April 29, 2016 at 11:52am Surely many ASU employees will be interested in the 2016-17 salary data...
April 29, 2016 at 11:32am This is one of my favorite websites to visit! The drama on here is addicting. I'm considering starting a gofundme account to pay for all the popcorn i'm consuming.
April 28, 2016 at 7:40pm The new documents posted on this site (our last regular audit and an RFP for an apparently unprecedented 3rd party audit) contain some truly scary information. For a "transparent" administration, they certainly did a good job of hiding all of this. - Adams went from an increase in net position of approximately $700,000 in Fiscal Year 2011 to a decrease in net position of approximately $7.0 million in Fiscal Year 2015, a 1,115 percent change increasing the loss. - p. 5: The University has experienced a growing trend of operating losses before other revenues, expenses, gains, losses or transfers as of June 30, 2015 and the previous three years. We may be paying for all our capital construction with our jobs! Thanks a lot Bill, Dave, and Frank! - p. 6-7: The University has experienced over $47 million of capital construction projects since 2011. Related to the capital construction, there have been significant increases in depreciation, interest and operation of plant expenses. The combination of declining revenue and increasing expenses has caused a negative trend in the University's financial condition. - p. 14: Bonds payable of $70.1 million represent over 57% of the University’s total noncurrent liabilities Moody's mentioned some of these issues and the downside of guaranteed tuition when they down-rated our bonds to A3. - p. 7: Why does this problem matter? If the trend is not reversed, the University's financial condition will deteriorate and jeopardize the operations of the University. Are we paying for this by dropping fellowships and scholarships? - p. 22: "Scholarships and fellowships". 2014:$831,691 2015:$254,183 The difference is over a half a million dollars I wonder when Administration plans on discussing any of this with employees?
April 28, 2016 at 2:23pm Chief Grohowski's "performance" at the employee recognition ceremony yesterday was ridiculous and painful. Yes, every one appreciates all that the campus police do to keep us safe from sex predators and drug dealers. And yes, the Chief is being sued by the ACLU, so I'm sure he wanted to seize the opportunity to share the accomplishments of "his" department. Nonetheless, taking 15-20 minutes to recognize four officers was completely out of line with how all the other employees were treated. Staff members who have worked here for 30 or 40 years received 90 seconds of recognition. Top honors went to two faculty members - who were recognized for 90 seconds. Less time was spent recognizing the promotion of a whole list of professors than was spent on the four officers. A naive observer would have thought campus police are the bedrock of ASU, with primary responsibility for educating and supporting our students. Next year, the Chief needs to get his own venue or keep his ceremony consistent with the rest: reason for recognition, name, present an award while everyone claps for 30 seconds,... next!
April 26, 2016 at 8:45am A different scenario of “one year from today.” I and MANY others, (more than you are willing to count, who are tired of the Bullying, Lying and Public Shaming routine at ASU) envision quite a different scenario a year from now. Let’s start with Beverlee and her scorched earth policy. Yes, she still might be president at ASU for reasons beyond reason, but once she and ASU have lost the ACLU case she will be a legally confirmed liar who was willing to defame, libel and slander an innocent individual out of personal convenience. Who exactly did she lie to? She lied to the Faculty senate as she waived a stuffed folder full of meaningless documents while crowing about a non-existent watchlist. She lied to the students, the community and Valley Courier with further false allegations of terrorism regarding her “whipping boy” du jour. She and ASU will then be personally open to civil slander/libel suits where the cost of losing will be compounded. So how much has ASU and the attorney general’s office already spent on legal fees? Who knows how many other libel and slander cases she and OTHERS who have been complicit in this egregious behavior of defamation and bullying will be liable for. Perhaps this treatment of defamation extends to others on campus who are also willing to take up arms against the repetitious pattern of retribution and false accusations. A year from now ASU will still be on probation continuing to garner a stellar reputation as an institution worthy of avoidance. We still have yet to see what further investigation shall uncover. ASU will continue to have a faculty and staff who are deeply divided by an abusive segment of Beverlee loyalists who continue to bully and oppress. They bully and oppress those who will not tow the line of blind and unquestioning allegiance to unrestrained campus cronyism. Oh what a happy family are we! You can paint your happy faces and dance with dervish delight to your pompous parades that make you feel a false sense of elation regarding your current situation but you are just lying to yourself. Right, Beez? The sad and utterly pathetic truth is that the administration and their cronies are engaging in a slash and burn vendetta. When attempts were made for an amicable settlement, without lawyers, Beverlee betrayed everyone who was involved and effectively spat in the eyes of all good faith participants. Now the atmosphere on campus is reduced to campaigns of public shaming, shunning and more of that kind. These behaviors are more worthy of a 13th grade, never mind a university. If Adams is to survive, the retribution needs to stop now. Sincere reconciliation should be the order of the day. All of these campus battles are having a terrible toll on the dwindling student body. Academics, rigorous and honest is what is needed to be the focus instead of battles between petty fiefdoms. The eternal battle of the snake and the mongoose only leads to the demise of both parties. The choice lies with those who have the power to make these changes.
April 25, 2016 at 8:09pm In reply to that last comment, right on! "The same 8-10 unhappy people" is a meme, just like "the disgruntled employee." Just keep saying them and maybe your audience will buy them. People in power love to spread these memes as a convenient way of manipulating public opinion. They are just so palatable, tasty little morsels that are easy to consume without thinking for yourself, but they are poisonous if you care about reality.
April 25, 2016 at 3:22pm "The same 8-10 unhappy people will continue to be unhappy." Depending on how you define it, there are at least 8-10 people who are unhappy with the leadership and culture at ASU in any given department or building. If you think this is limited to just a few people, you are kidding yourself or just unaware of how many people are silently suffering.
April 24, 2016 at 10:23pm On March 17th, someone wrote: "One year from today Danny will still not be employed by ASU. Beverlee McClure will still be President. ASU will still be accredited. Donors will continue their support. Dedicated faculty, staff, and administration will continue the mission of the university. The same 8-10 unhappy people will continue to be unhappy." I'd like to add... One year from today Danny will still not be a threat to ASU or anyone because he never was. McClure will still be President because she'll be unemployable elsewhere. Dedicated faculty, staff, and administration will continue to serve students because that's what they love to do. And almost everyone will be unhappy with the decision to hire an under-qualified "business person" for president. True leaders have leadership skills, including the wisdom to listen to employees who point out problems, rather than being duped by those who say everything is "just fine."
April 6, 2016 at 2:25pm I have been following the Danny Ledone "story" since it was published in Westworld, and I'm confused about exactly what Danny hopes to gain from his lawsuit. Does he want the persona non grata designation lifted, or does he expect more? It seems to me that, in the end, his actions will prove to be self-destructive. Maybe he will once again be allowed on the ASU campus to attend functions open to the general public, which seems reasonable. I hope he will be happy with that because he will never again be employed by the institution. In fact, it is doubtful that any college or university will want to employ him. So Danny, I wish you well in your business because you have made yourself unemployable. ----Editor's Reply: The relief sought in the ACLU lawsuit speaks for itself and filing documents are available on the Watching Adams Documents page. And sometimes, there are greater causes in life than making a paycheck and higher principles than attracting a particular employer. What is happening to the profession of college faculty in the USA is a tragic and avoidable unraveling, one of which many similar stories are emerging nationwide.
March 17, 2016 at 2:20pm One year from today Danny will still not be employed by ASU. Beverlee McClure will still be President. ASU will still be accredited. Donors will continue their support. Dedicated faculty, staff, and administration will continue the mission of the university. The same 8-10 unhappy people will continue to be unhappy.
March 16, 2016 at 10:14pm To the comment that read, "If the institution is so bad, quit!" After all the insults that President McClure has lobbed at the HLC in an open letter, maybe she should consider quitting the HLC? Or just quitting?
March 16, 2016 at 3:05pm I completely agree with the comment left on 3/15 regarding the online programs being cash cows; therefore, any sense of academic or accountability of students are nil, since plagiarism is allowed and unqualified students get degrees.
March 15, 2016 at 9:54pm I sincerely hope that current and future donors to ASU's Foundation and Alumni programs seriously consider how their money might be spent. Unrestricted gifts often have the tendency to find their way to the Athletics department. Staff and administrators in this department seem to have a keen sense of the deep pockets of the Foundation and it's willingness to write "blank checks." I doubt very many donors would be happy to know of this practice.
March 15, 2016 at 7:48pm HLC must be watching the comments posted here about our Extended Studies department with much interest.
March 15, 2016 at 4:20pm It's common knowledge within the institution that the Extended Studies department and it's online courses are ASU's cash cow. Higher-level administration has always been willing to turn a blind eye to the day-to-day operational (both financial and academic) side of things. Rarely, if ever, are the directors of this program held accountable for their spending. The excuse has always been "they're cash funded, so leave them alone." Administrators have also been known to regularly dip into the cash reserves of the Extended Studies program to supplement other budgets across campus.
March 15, 2016 at 1:21pm The divisiveness at ASU was there before Watching Adams. Watching Adams exposed Richardson Hall and the incompetent presidency of McClure.
March 15, 2016 at 9:40am I'm here as a troll, and I very much wish I hadn't clicked on this website (Pandora's Box) since my visit has only added to the ever-growing number of hits it gets, making it look more legitimate than it really is. It deserves no hits. This website doesn't promote anything positive, it just fuels a small clique's need to publically throw hate at Adams State. And yes, it is disgusting that there are people who are supported financially by ASU - who take home a fat paycheck every month - that contribute to this ugliness. If the institution is so bad, quit! Don't expect that you can hide behind your Adams State desk and no one will know who you are; a weasel's easily recognized. I believe in freedom of speech, but I don't believe anything good can come from feeding this divisive propaganda. Stop the hate. ----Editor's Reply: ASU is supported financially by its students and Colorado taxpayers, both of whom deserve outside perspectives on a public institution. Propaganda is largely a matter of perspective, though the Valley Courier and KRZA are local media outlets who reprint ASU press releases in full without any additional investigation. There is a vast difference between criticism and hate - one which should be understood in higher education given that critical thought is the basis for the formation of knowledge. And critical thought is inherently positive because it represents the willingness to challenge existing assumptions - especially those espoused by government officials such as university administration. That is the purpose of the fourth estate - often the only check to government power. And with such a high employee turnover and low graduation rate, unfortunately many people are already quitting.
March 15, 2016 at 8:24am Looking forward to the Standing Strong events scheduled today, spring winds notwithstanding! I'm also hoping that staff/supporters of Watching Adams will attend. Maybe we can have an actual dialogue--with or without their Guy Fawkes masks. --QCIC
March 14, 2016 at 4:29pm Hi Danny, Watching your interview with Dr. Rees at AAUP and I think back on last year, when you were another adjunct in exile! NOW and in spite of what you have been through, you have been relentless and successful in your mission to expose corporate practices in higher ed and for that I THANK YOU for your hard work! As an adjunct faculty myself, I am very grateful to you! Beth E. McGarry, RN, BSN, M.Ed -- Adjunct Professors United on facebook
March 14, 2016 at 1:18pm The best analogy for the parade at ASU is the dance band on the Titanic calming the panicked crowd as the ship sinks.
March 14, 2016 at 9:23am Better a "parade" than creating and maintaining a website like watching adams ----Editor's Reply: The beautiful part about living in a free country is that we can have both! We deserve a marketplace of ideas with more voices and more choices. Judging by the amount of traffic this site gets, people are voting with their eyeballs. --------Reply March 14, 2016 at 12:42pm Not really - people just troll your site. This is hardly a "vote with eyeballs" - more like passing a horrible accident as we have no choice but to keep watching despite the nastiness. ------------Editor's Reply: While we receive many compliments and much praise for our work, it's perfectly fine if someone wants to "troll" this site. But make no mistake: the choice to visit is entirely of one's own making.
March 14, 2016 at 7:22am I could not believe what I just read about Dr. McClure's statement concerning 2008 enrollment levels. I am confused!
March 13, 2016 at 10:24pm - Chronicle article on cheating - Declining enrollment - Moody's downgrade - ACLU lawsuit - HLC probation - Students wondering if their degrees will come from an accredited institution How can ASU address these serious problems? A PARADE! That will fix everything! Students and parents will feel so much better.
March 13, 2016 at 8:53pm From a previous comment: "I (very) recently read about 3 online classes at Cal Berkeley with a total enrollment of 350,000. Are they are [sic] probation too, I don't know?" Home run, you prove the point the HLC made: "the sheer number of documented non-compliant courses is evidence of a pervasive lack of policy communication, understanding, or enforcement.” The commentator, most likely a former department chair, doesn't understand the difference between a MOOC and ASU's online courses, doesn't understand HLC's policies, and isn't or wasn't concerned about enforcement. Is it any wonder the HLC sanctioned ASU?
March 13, 2016 at 1:22pm It turns out, many faculty frequently do leave ASU to find higher-paying and less strenuous teaching positions elsewhere. We had several professors leave at the end of last semester, actually. Ask faculty how often they're serving on a search committee for an open position. Is this constant turnover, which seems financially wasteful and hinders good student relations, really "just the way it is" for ASU? Turnover at a university shouldn't resemble turnover at Walmart or Burger King.
March 13, 2016 at 8:17am Berkeley’s “enrollment” of 350,000 students are participants in MOOCs. A MOOC is an acronym for massive open online course. It’s an online course aimed at unlimited participation and open access via the web. You are comparing apples to oranges. A MOOC is comparable to watching TV. They are mostly streamed lectures with perhaps accompanying materials. We are not talking about a direct student/teacher relationship. Berkeley also relies on “auto grading”. It’s completely computer based. http://alumni.berkeley.edu/california-magazine/spring-2015-dropouts-and-drop-ins/many-enroll-few-finish-moocs-march-how-online Students who PAY for online semester based classes have lecture materials, videos but also must include a direct relationship with a teacher and fellow students with discussion board topics and email communications. Anybody who has taught or taken a course via Blackboard should be familiar with this mode of interaction. MOOCs are similar to watching TV. They offer no personal interaction. Also, Berkeley does not charge a dime for their MOOC streaming AND Berkeley MOOCs do not confer degrees. A single teacher cannot effectively teach “450-600 students in individual online sections” in any meaningful way. This is why the HLC is correctly citing ASU in its online offerings. "•Faculty teaching in Extended Studies have course enrollments ranging from 450-600 students in individual online sections and are peculiar to the freshman sequence of English and math instruction; in addition, current full-time faculty teach many of the large courses, but these are considered outside of their full-time teaching load. This heavy student to faculty loading calls into question the academic integrity of the courses and quality of instruction;" ASU is charging students for a full educational experience. I don’t see how “auto grading” can be effectively employed in an English course. I think the HLC feels the same way.
March 12, 2016 at 10:04pm So let me get this straight, Beverlee could not give the benefit of due process to Danny, but was emphatically requesting the same from HLC???
March 12, 2016 at 9:37pm Response to an earlier comment: "I would say the 'watching adams' crowd has created the fear in others because you don't have the ability to truly dialogue." ARE YOU SERIOUS? Have you read the ACLU/Ledonne case against ASU? "Defendants deprived Mr. Ledonne of constitutionally-protected interests by (1) denying access to a Colorado public university campus and (2) injuring his reputation and good name. They did so without notice, without a hearing, and without any meaningful opportunity to be heard, all in violation of the Due Process Clause." It seems to me that it is actually the president of ASU and her administration who cannot "truly dialogue."
March 12, 2016 at 12:53pm Standing Strong for ASU...its students, President McClure, women's equality, collaboration, academic rigor, shared governance, student success.....join us Tuesday 3/15 at 12:15 at the library....will march to Richardson Hall to celebrate ASU Grizzly greatness!
March 12, 2016 at 12:14pm The "fear of retribution" (by? administration?) is completely false and unfounded. Basically, an excuse to hide and 'think' that people don't know who is posting. I would say the 'watching adams' crowd has created the fear in others because you don't have the ability to truly dialogue. Carol Smith - just sign your name to your posts and blog entries. The entire campus knows that you are a major contributor to this divisive site (and beyond). And, we know a whole lot more about your destructive antics. Your reputation is beyond tarnished.
March 12, 2016 at 10:44am I (very) recently read about 3 online classes at Cal Berkeley with a total enrollment of 350,000. Are they are probation too, I don't know? There is a simple answer to the question about why faculty and staff make 25% less that others, I'm guessing from other colleges: You are working at a small state school with low enrollment. If you want more money then recruit more students and teach more classes. Or go back to school and get a degree or skill that pays more. Or move to one of those colleges that pays 25% more that evidently is holding a job open for you. Only at a college would productive employees be criticized for being more productive. Most of us in this valley support ASU but your constant bickering does not help you.
March 11, 2016 at 11:02pm Something to ponder: if things at ASU are just fine, why is there a 21% four year graduation rate, why do faculty and staff make 25% less than others in their field, and why is there such constant turnover in many programs and departments? Things are not fine at Adams State. Until the campus moves to address the fundamentals, these quibbles over specific online courses are just diddling with the details.
March 11, 2016 at 7:02pm Thanks for the explanation from the School of Business. That helps others understand to some degree. ASU certainly needs to keep the best interest of students in mind. Nevertheless, it is unclear why so many courses are being taught in summer. The figures posted in a previous comment regarding 3 courses in 3 weeks is equivalent to an instructor teaching 45 credits (15 courses) at the same time during a single semester. I can't imagine a justification for that. Moreover, that has been going on for years hasn't it? Maybe some motivated researcher will check the past few years' schedules. Maybe they'll be from HLC. And who has the facts on HLC's claim about 450-600 students in a single online course? Who are the superhumans teaching those courses? I don't know any haters who hate ASU or students, but then again I have limited contacts. I do know people who speak up often do so to make things better, in particular, for students.
March 11, 2016 at 1:04pm Anonymous submissions to Watching Adams are an indication of the prevailing atmosphere at Adams State University. ----Editor's Reply: For commentary on this topic, see The Value of Anonymous Speech.
March 11, 2016 at 11:47am I would like to see a list of contributors to the "Watching Adams" website. Journalistic integrity and fear of retribution is one thing (and I'm using the term "journalistic" quite generously when referring to this website), and having the strength to stand by one's convictions is another. ----Editor's Reply: As these comments are collected anonymously, only those signed by their authors are attributed. "Fear of retribution" for authors and their sources is indeed the reason all articles are edited and published by Danny Ledonne, the only contributor not employed by Adams State University; ASU is an at-will employer who has demonstrated an ongoing practice of terminating or attempting to terminate staff and even tenured faculty without due process. We respect the privacy of our sources and our authors, as well as those who comment here, in the interest of a free exchange of ideas. Those who believe this website is of no value are free not to visit. I would encourage anyone to contact us with story ideas and/or their own writing if they wish to contribute to the site.
March 11, 2016 at 8:43am It is unfortunate that promised "great transparency" has sunk into insults. The haters and malcontents won't care but other readers might note that the School of Business is short two full faculty members - one vacant position and one sabbatical. A part-time adjunct was hired for some classes but the majority had to be shouldered by existing faculty, thus some heavy overloads this and last semester. It was not what the faculty desired, but the alternative was to cancel classes and force students to delay their graduation a semester or year. Note too that some classes are taught in alternate years. Serving the students seemed the best decision. It is also fair to note that no business faculty member sees overloads as a good financial proposition. The pay is very low compared to the time and effort required for a full semester class. Many business faculty could easily accept a consulting or speaking engagement and reap higher financial reward for far less time committed. Those who impugn the quality of business classes at Adams State need only look at the true evaluation of the classes and faculty - the marketplace. Business students are hired at a very high rate and at higher salaries than many other majors on campus. Business executives regularly recruit Adam's graduates and come back for more. Business graduates also fare very well in acceptance to and success in graduate programs in law, tax, management and other areas. And it is not only Business, Adams has many such successful programs. But the truth is, everyone knows this except for the haters and malcontents. They may know it and just be jealous. Regardless, these desperate few could help Adams by working with the president and board, although their efforts to trash and divide are causing the BOT, business leaders, scholarship donors, athletic contributors and others to double-down on our support of President McClure, the School of Business, the Athletic Department, and of course Adams at large. It doesn't take much to tear down, but the builders will prevail.
March 10, 2016 at 7:37pm So today on 9 News, President McClure said they couldn't fix the fact that instructors were overloaded with credits because they are in the middle of the semester. However, this problem has been going on for years and ASU has known for several years that HLC had concerns. Embarrassingly, as a previous post makes clear, the Summer 2016 schedule includes some outrageous overloads. If ASU takes the HLC probation seriously, they need to change the summer schedule NOW.
March 10, 2016 at 3:13pm I wonder how Larry Mortensen and his minions will squander the latest $60,000 donation to ASU Athletics from the Alamosa County commissioners.
March 10, 2016 at 8:11am That last comment got me thinking. When I was in a summer Business class a few years ago, I heard the prof was teaching 3 courses at the same time. A look at the Summer Schedule for 2016 shows that's still goin on. In just three weeks in May one teacher is teaching 3 courses, 9 hours a day, with a 1 minute break between classes for lunch and a 30 minute break between classes in the afternoon. WTF! Another prof is teaching 12 credits in just 5 weeks and covering some kind of internship over the summer. Isn't that more than triple what most profs teach? I thought they were supposed to teach 4 classes in a 15-16 week semester? Two of these classes run for only a week, meeting 5 days for 9 hours a day. Makes you wonder about exhaustion of students and teacher. And how much feedback can students get under those condtions? Quality all the way! Problem fixed. Why would the accreditation folks be so harsh on my poor little ASU?
March 10, 2016 at 6:32am To the last comment, GOOD POINT! I wonder what’s being concealed under the rock the Business School is hiding under. Let’s find out how many student athletic “scholars” are being funneled, ur, I mean educated under that banner.
March 9, 2016 at 9:07pm Let me get this right... President McClure is claiming the problems are fixed? If you look at the course offerings for this semester, it appears a single Business professor is teaching FIVE on-campus courses and a bunch of online courses. How the hell does anyone teach that many classes at once and deliver any kind of quality?!?! And another Business professor is teaching EIGHT on-campus courses, plus a bunch of online courses. Who cares about students, it's all about the money!
March 9, 2016 at 12:36pm Mass email [sent out to students]: I would like to clarify an issue about which you may have questions or concerns. In late 2014, the Chronicle of Higher Education published an article recounting "Confessions of a Fixer", an unidentified person who made a business of cheating to help academically ineligible student athletes at other institutions. He admitted to falsifying information and posing as the athletes to take exams for correspondence course transfer credit through Adams State Extended Studies. Adams State immediately began addressing this alleged issue and commissioned reports with recommendations from two external entities, including the Colorado Department of Higher Education. That review, submitted in May, found "no evidence of instances of ignoring guidelines or policies...or negligence. In some areas, the institution had already identified procedural changes to address issues related to [student] authentication and academic integrity, and had begun to initiate those changes." We have been proactive in identifying and addressing concerns in a manner that demonstrates continuous improvement. Last September 14-15, the Higher Learning Commission, our accrediting agency, conducted an Advisory Visit on campus to further explore the issue. We received correspondence regarding the report on January 7. Our response to the report reiterated that Adams State had already addressed all of the concerns raised in the initial Chronicle of Higher Education articles, none of which were identified in the advisory team report. We have made significant progress in correcting additional findings, as well. Nevertheless, this week the HLC notified us that Adams State was placed on probation effective February 26, 2016. HLC imposed the sanction immediately, prior to even notifying the institution. I ASSURE YOU OUR ACCREDITATION REMAINS INTACT. We are stunned by this action. It appears the HLC had already determined the outcome of this review and completely disregarded the actions we took to correct the situation. Prior to the HLC action, I made several requests to address the HLC Board directly and to speak with its president. Those requests were ignored. We believe the HLC's action was calculated to undermine the integrity of the university. We have requested HLC review all the information we had submitted, which I believe will lead to a reversal of this onerous decision. You may read the documents mentioned here and others at this website. Please know that Adams State University is committed to student success and to meeting accreditation criteria. Sincerely yours, Dr. Beverlee J. McClure President, Adams State University
March 9, 2016 at 8:19am ADAMS STATE UNIVERSITY TRUSTEES: Now you will wake up! Adams State’s President Says Her University Is Accreditor’s ‘Whipping Boy’
March 8, 2016 at 2:14pm ----Editor's Note: The HLC notice of academic probation and President' McClure's response are now available on the Watching Adams Documents page.
March 8, 2016 at 12:35am Dr. McClure's email to staff regarding the HLC action to place ASU on probation is laughable. Furthermore, her letter to the HLC Board comes across as condescending and arrogant. Do we really need these qualities in a supposed leader? Once again, the BOT must be asleep at the wheel. The irony in all this, is McClure's ability to understand the meaning of due process when it's to her convenience.
March 7, 2016 at 8:57pm Too much bad news lately, so I have to point to why I love ASU: I, and I'm guessing the rest of our department, are so incredibly proud of our psychology students. We have record involvement in the Psychology Club and the national honor society, Psi Chi, as well as a record number of students heading to Denver for our regional psychology conference (RMPA). They raised money for RMPA and to bring a speaker to campus from Ft. Lewis (aided by the Campus Impact Fund, I believe). Excellent lecture tonight with great turnout and great discussions. They have set the bar for student involvement within our department. Kudos to the students and faculty advisers (Leslie & Robert)!!! - Jeff Elison
March 7, 2016 at 8:48pm Adams State University Trustees: with the recent HLC notification of putting the entire University on probation, some of you must be thinking, "Is it time for McClure to go?" We all know the various series of events which have resulted in a downward spiral for ASU. Some of you must be coming to the realization that it was a mistake in appointing Dr. McClure as president. However, the bigger mistake with grave long term consequences for Adams would be not to take any action now. Just read the confrontational, accusatory, and defensive letter to HLC and you will know if McClure is fit to lead ASU.
February 29, 2016 at 7:30am From today's WatchingAdams article about the library: "The resolution, which passed unanimously with a vote of 38-0, upholds that the library plays a central role in the academic success of ASU students." I'm proud of our students for recognizing the importance of the library, for working together, and for making their needs known. Good work.
February 25, 2016 at 1:22pm McClure-RESIGN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Get out before you totally destroy an chance at future employment. I would never vote to hire you, but someone may unless you carry this out to its logical conclusion.
February 25, 2016 at 10:17am WOW! Blundering statements follow more blundering statements from Beverlee, and BOT sleeping?
February 25, 2016 at 7:43am The latest joke in ASU's tragicomedy has to be the disconnect between McClure's stance and that of her attorneys: BRING IT ON! (but slowly please). As the ACLU attorneys point out in their latest response to the Federal Court: "only one day after the filing of the lawsuit, Defendant McClure publicly CROWED [emphasis added] that the Defendants 'look forward to making the case that the University’s actions were based solely on evidence'" and “it is eager to tackle the allegations of a former faculty member in U.S. District Court.” So says McClure, in contrast to her attorneys who claim "they cannot reasonably respond to the Plaintiff’s Motion for a Preliminary Injunction within ten days." The president can talk-the-talk, but she doesn't have a case to allow her attorneys to walk-the-walk. Seem like a case of "crow" meets "chicken."
February 21, 2016 at 10:10pm I don't think the decision to issue the PNG will be McClure's downfall. She can claim an "abundance of caution" over "student safety" or blame the AG's office. No, her downfall will be the cover-up, the lies she told to save face. She used students to justify her action, yet she didn't inform students about the PNG for weeks. That makes no sense. She granted an interview with the Valley Courier - using words like "harassment" and "terrorism." Get a grip. She called an emergency meeting of faculty senate - and lied about the State Police Watchlist - and pretended the Watson case didn't apply. She addressed students at AS&F and told them the same lie about the Watchlist, patting her trusty file, "I do have a copy of that in his file." A copy of a non-existent Watchlist that the State Police point out would violate citizens' civil liberties?!? If that's not a cover-up, I don't know what is. Danny Ledonne is Beverlee McClure's Watergate. Just as Nixon's tapes had long "mysterious gaps," I suspect McClure and ASU administration will hide their dirty deeds... but it won't matter. They will lose.
February 21, 2016 at 7:46pm Thanks to whoever addressed the silly “if you don’t like ASU then leave” comment. You are correct; I (Jeff Elison) strive to change things precisely because I do like ASU, Alamosa, my colleagues, and our students. I’ve been waiting to address the second part of the threatening comment, which implies we don’t do our jobs: “These guys don’t have a freak’n clue about the ramifications of this for their careers. But, doubt if they care because they would be doing their jobs rather than…” Somebody beat me to responding and I thank you. It’s nice to be appreciated in these trying times. At the same time, I understand there are many reasons why others, even tenured faculty, might not speak up, so I don’t hold any grudges. As much as my wife dislikes WatchingAdams, she was incredulous when she heard someone didn’t think I work hard enough. She and our kids think I spend too much time working. She said “surely no one in your department feels that way” and I doubt they do. Nevertheless, just as the commentator couldn’t seem to comprehend the logic of loving a place therefore wanting to improve it, he or she couldn’t seem to comprehend critics doing their jobs AND working extra hours to improve ASU. The implication that Ben or I don’t do our jobs is not only insulting (which I’m sure was the intent), but it is an additional threat. Failure to do our jobs would be grounds for “the ramifications” to which the commentator referred. Therefore, I will address these misconceptions in some detail. Just skip it if you’re not interested. Last semester, in the midst of raising issues about Constitutional violations, I received my highest course evaluations ever. Over the four months the PNG controversy has been going on, I served on two faculty senate committees, finished an invited manuscript for the Encyclopedia of Adolescence, submitted a paper to the Rocky Mountain Psychological Association Conference (RMPA) which was accepted, a student I advise had her paper accepted by RMPA and it will be presented as a poster at Student Scholar Days, another student will be presenting a project we worked on together at SSD, I reviewed submissions for RMPA as a member of the program committee, obtained IRB approval for an undergraduate research project designed with two of my students and started collecting data, reviewed 30+ articles for another manuscript which I’ve started, helped Polish researchers translate a psychological assessment I created (13th translation), wrote and submitted an FTAC grant, attended the 7-hour Master Teacher workshop, reviewed three manuscripts for psych journals, and served as an editorial board member for Evolutionary Behavioral Sciences. I’ve also helped with student recruitment by participating in two 2-hour Upward Bound activities in December and January (staying until 9:00pm), spending three hours on the Discover Day recruiting event last weekend, and donating $50 in prize money for this weekend’s ASU Climbing Competition. I work almost every weekend and I worked a few hours almost every day during a 2-week vacation over Christmas and New Years. I’ll happily share my C.V. and course evals with anyone. I may not be an academic rock star, but my publication record isn’t exactly shabby with 15 publications, including a book. Regarding availability to students, I check email first thing every morning, late at night just before going to bed, and many times in between. This prompted one non-traditional student to joke in class: “Dr. Elison didn’t respond for 12 hours, so I was pretty sure he was dead or in the hospital.” So, you and ASU administration would be hard-pressed to make the case that I’ve been shirking my duties. I’m not bragging, just being defensive and setting the record straight for you and administration because, as you acknowledge, ASU can be a threatening environment. Furthermore, my career aspirations are modest. I never want to be a department chair or an administrator. I love teaching and research. My goals are to teach at ASU, improving every year, until I retire in 8-10 years, and attain full professor next year. Yes, at ASU. I love the SLV, believe ASU makes an important contribution to the lives of our students, and believe our campus climate can be improved. Those goals hardly seem threatening or worth the risk of interfering with. Feel free to share this post with administration and their newly hired lawyers. I want people to be fully informed before making any more rash decisions. I’m guessing ASU will be in damage control mode for quite some time. Not a Danny-follower, I’m a believer in Constitutional civil liberties. As someone pointed out here, all ASU faculty pledged to follow the State and U.S. Constitutions. I’ve done my part. Have you? I’d be happy to talk about this more face-to-face. Stop by my office (MCD 350) or we could meet for a beer. Sincerely, Jeff Elison
February 21, 2016 at 8:04am Jeff and Ben. Good guys. Solid academics. Good colleagues. Fighting the fight for faculty rights. Where are all the other tenured faculty? Behind closed doors they agree with Jeff and Ben. Over some foreign beer at the pub they badmouth McClure. But when it comes to publicly supporting Danny, Ben, and Jeff, these tenured faculty show no integrity, no solidarity, no class. Shame on you all.
February 20, 2016 at 11:04am Did she get a "standing ovation" by the Colorado senate on Friday for increasing enrollment and retention, decreasing the number of law suits and other investigations against her and the administration, uniting the campus, increasing graduation rates, following the Constitution and due process, providing a retaliation free campus climate for those who do not agree with her, increasing the prestige of ASU, increasing job placement rates of our graduates, etc, etc?
February 20, 2016 at 6:46am “If you don't like ASU then leave! Please! Do us all a favor and ditch town. “ My brain keeps looping around back to this perplexing mandate from a post last week. If one doesn’t like something, if one sees wrong in the world and is uncomfortable with it, one has three basic choices: a. Live with it b. Leave it c. Change it The majority will probably always gravitate towards the first two options. The majority will probably always take issue with those who opt for the third way. But who really cares for an institution more – those who live with it as it is, those who abandon it for greener pastures, or those who stay and work to improve it? It is the individuals who are actively seeking positive change for ASU who truly “like ASU”. The majority will always say, “Well, we need change just not the way you’re going about it.” A question for the majority, then, is “Which way, then?” My guess is, when pressed to dig deep, their answer is inaction. Patience. Subservience. Because ultimately people are uncomfortable with change until it’s over and done with. It’s a psychological maxim. Questions to ponder: • “If you don’t like segregation, then leave the South!” • “If you don’t like apartheid, then leave South Africa!” • “If you don’t like the specter of Trump, then move to Canada!” • “If you don’t like the British tax on tea, then leave the colonies!” • …Feel free to add your own lessons from history Positive change in the world is not brought about by options a) and b), folks.
February 19, 2016 at 8:46pm College presidents, like Beverlee, who do not uphold the Constitution and take away the fundamental individual right of due process are not deserving of any "standing ovation" by a legislative body nor should be welcomed by them.
February 19, 2016 at 8:21pm As a supporter of Danny and even more important the Constitution, I want to thank Drew Lamprecht for his comment below. Supporters of ASU, students, should read it. I understand employees in Richardson Hall standing by McClure-their jobs would be lost if they did not. But students, get a clue. This is serious. Do you really support an institution that retaliates against individuals because they cannot tolerate any sort of criticism? Do you really think freedom of speech and assembly are not important? Do you have any idea of what "due process" is and how/why it is crucial to a democratic culture? Don't be duped by an administration that talks the talk but then is deceitful, manipulative, and retaliatory. You may not know Danny, but that is not important. If ASU can get away with this against him. they could do it to anyone-even you. If free inquiry and unbridled speech should be protected anywhere it is at a university.
February 19, 2016 at 12:23pm I wrote an email to Dr. McClure in the wake of the issuance of the PNG against Danny and I never received a reply from the "eager to listen" president. I was and still am in support of Danny Ledonne. The president has shown that she would rather let the school get sued than admit she was in the wrong. I left Adams State this semester for multiple reasons, but first and foremost was the administration of ASU. I was close to graduating, but have decided that a different school is right for me (and probably for many other students who attend). A culture of ignorance pervades the detached student body. In one of my 400 level English classes in the fall semester the class complained that we had to "read too much". Clearly, academics are of little priority to many students and especially to the administration. I liked all my teachers, and I knew many other students as dedicated to learning as I was, but we all felt neglected by the "institution of higher education". Adams State University is most certainly broken, and I can only hope that whichever school I end up choosing will accept the majority of my credits. - Drew Lamprecht
February 18, 2016 at 10:38pm From Bridge of Spies (based on a true story of the Cold War): After being asked to violate his ethics "for the good of the country," Donovan responds: "My name's Donovan, Irish, both sides, mother and father. I'm Irish, you're German, but what makes us both Americans? Just one thing, one, one, one, the rule book. We call it the Constitution and we agree to the rules and that's what makes us Americans and it's all that makes us Americans" From the ACLU complaint against ASU: "Without intervention from this Court, employees and students at Adams State University, and members of the Alamosa community at-large, will be deterred or chilled from expressing opinions critical of Adams State University or its administration for fear that they will be unceremoniously banned from campus on the pretext that their conduct is “disruptive,” makes people “uncomfortable,” or represents “a threat” to the campus or its students." The U.S. Constitution is our Rule Book. Maybe it protects people you don't like today, but maybe it protects you tomorrow. It helps level the playing field when some people have advantages due to race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, position, or wealth. Who would we be, as a nation, without it?
February 17, 2016 at 10:21pm After days of active chatter, Jeff Elison’s post appears to have brought this forum to a complete standstill. Wow. Why? Is it because, by daring to identify himself on this anonymous forum, he’s driven home that we are speaking not just about real people, but *to* them? Is it because he has spoken directly to that which compels us all to stay silent at Adams State – the very real and ever present prospect of retaliation? Is it because, by identifying himself by name, he challenges us to consider doing the same and we find that a frightening prospect? I would like to applaud Jeff for having the courage to speak out against the thinly veiled and utterly despicable threats posted here a few days ago. I would like to applaud Jeff and Ben and a few others for being among just a slim handful of tenured faculty at ASU with the personal principles and convictions to stand up for our constitutional protections. If tenured faculty won’t do so, who else will? Certainly not tenure track faculty or at-will employees who can be let go at any time without cause, with no “statement of reasons or grounds required”, and who know this is a repressive administration that looks unkindly on freedom of expression. I wish I had the personal courage to not just applaud Jeff but to declare my own name while doing so. If we ALL identified ourselves and stood up to ASU’s entrenched bullies and intimidators, their power would be instantly diminished. I have come close to doing so with this post, but then I remember – as another poster stated so succinctly - this shit is real. And so I elect to remain anonymous out of simple self-preservation, knowing that this in turn preserves ASU’s unfortunate status quo. I haven’t yet found the courage to speak out, but I applaud those like Jeff who have done so. They are the ones who are leading the way to a new and better ASU.
February 15, 2016 at 8:12pm A comment from February 13 included: “If we are going to name names - let’s call out Jeff Elison and Ben Waddell… These guys don’t have a freak’n clue about the ramifications of this for their careers.” Wow, I check in after a few days and there is so much misinformation – and a threat. I’m going to break WatchingAdams protocol and make it clear who is writing this - Jeff Elison. After all, I’ve been “named” (imagine scary music playing in the background)! Now I have to ask: did you read what you wrote? The ACLU is suing President McClure for what they describe as retaliatory acts and here you are threatening me regarding the ramifications of “this” for my career! Nice irony. You are defending an administration at the same time you are saying they will retaliate against me. You’ve pegged our campus climate. Are you trying to make the ACLU’s case for them? Note: “Ramifications” for my career would violate State and Federal whistle blower laws. I doubt ASU wants to make their situation worse. If you want to intimidate me, you’ll have to try harder. That comment also included: “This and the danny followers, get more and more pathetic. It’s actually very funny and has given a lot of people stuff to laugh at.” I’m glad folks at ASU are laughing during these sad times. I’m sure most of us have had some hearty laughs over this comedy of errors, but we could all use some real humor instead. Let’s not forget administration is wasting our students’ money on legal fees, money that could benefit students and employees, and doing it at a time when ASU’s financial situation is bleak. Not so funny. Neither is being sued in Federal Court for violations of the U.S. Constitution. I doubt President McClure, Chief Grohowski, or the BOT are laughing about the suit or all the bad press. Please let this pass quickly.
February 15, 2016 at 9:21am The piece on anonymity really hits close to home. And frankly, it should be hitting close to home for everyone posting on here; reading from home because they’re afraid ASU is monitoring internet use; or whispering behind closed doors and even still too scared to post anonymously. If in fact ASU was a place that supported innovation or even a dissenting opinion, people would be posting their names next to their comments. So call it pathetic. Call it cowardly. But do us a favor and call it the truth. Whether you’re pro McClure or not, it doesn’t matter. The real issue is that she was hired as a business person to bring money into the institution. Three things to note here. 1) Upper administration and the BOT has not been able to admit to themselves or the ASU community the dire straits that the campus is actually in (financially and culturally). It seems that the condition of ASU was not even disclosed to McClure as noted in a quote from the Pueblo Chieftain where she says “Adams State is not a place you have to go into and fix” http://www.chieftain.com/news/3502449-120/mcclure-education-state-chieftain#sthash.kjUj73cO.dpuf 2) In higher ed new presidents usually come into their new positions and clean house. Whether it’s their whole cabinet or just a few members, new presidents bring in someone from their own team to make things happen. Unfortunately for us McClure lacked the previous experience necessary to even have her own team and had to rely on the existing ASU administration – one that has not worked for years. 3) We can’t throw rich donors, grants, and more money at a problem and expect things to magically get better. While I think that ASU does currently need a business person to get us out of the financial hole that we are in, the long term future of ASU will depend on a strong educational leader. Think about that when we are filling McClure’s position. Not if. When. “Adams is not fractured. Actually, it's never been stronger!” Are you serious? By strong do you mean the huge “mystery” hole in our budget? By strong do you mean our dismal graduation and retention rates? By strong do you mean the institutionalized culture of fear that exists across campus? You must be getting your news from the Valley Courier. So what do we do to fix things? And yes, things need fixing. Someone commented “If you don't like ASU then leave!” It’s not about “not liking ASU” it’s about not liking how things are done, it’s about not being involved in the decision making process. And if you try to get involved in the process you’ll be punished for it. See the piece on the Killing of CAG –this shit is real. I have engaged with some incredible students since I’ve been here. And I know so many hardworking and passionate faculty members and supportive staff. So why would we leave when we know we can make things better for these students?
February 15, 2016 at 7:33am Insightful comment here: "Adams is not fractured. Actually, it's never been stronger!" Maybe you should read the WatchingAdams article about the recent Moody's Report - it looks like our credit rating has never been lower. They just downgraded our rating on January 26th of this year. We, including students, are still paying for all the nice construction on campus. Moody's report says an additional threat that could lead to another downgrade is declining enrollment. And yes, it looks like numbers are down. On top of that, we'll now be paying substantial legal fees for a lawsuit brought on President McClure and Chief Grohowski: "Defendants acted intentionally, knowingly, willfully, wantonly, and in reckless disregard for Mr. Ledonne’s federally-protected constitutional rights"
February 14, 2016 at 10:58pm From the ACLU complaint: "The 'appeal' process proposed by Adams State University was a sham." Enough said. From a previous comment: "I find it curious that those who post that they work at ASU are posting during work hours. Are you posting on an ASU computer too? That's a great use of taxpayer and student money....NOT." Seems like posting about campus issues in an attempt to improve ASU would be a pretty good use of time and money. As opposed to say... squandering students' tuition defending Administrations' violations of ASU policy and the U.S. Constitution. Especially when Admin continued on this crash course after repeatedly having the law explained to them - explanations that are available in emails and audio recordings. An emeritus faculty member explained that the "General Fund" is where all tuition goes and from where we pay legal fees. The attorney general's office doesn't work for ASU for free. In other words, students and their families are paying their hard earned money and it's going straight to legal fees incurred over poor decisions. From the ACLU complaint: "Reasonable officials in Defendants’ positions would have known that their actions violated clearly-established constitutional rights to procedural due process." So, what does that make President McClure and Chief Grohowski? Certainly not "reasonable." You can fill in the rest.
February 14, 2016 at 10:44pm President's Contract (available on WatchingAdams under Documents): 16. Termination b. Discharge for Cause. iii) Intentional and willful misconduct that would subject the Employer to criminal or civil liability; v) A material violation of any law, rule, regulation, constitutional provision or policy of the Employer or University, or local, state, or federal law, which reflects adversely upon the University;
February 14, 2016 at 8:45pm I have contacts at universities in the Midwest and California. They have read what is going on and ASU's reputation is dropping like a rock. ASU already has a reputation for essentially just being 13th grade, but now this. Young Ph.Ds and ABDs are going to think twice before applying or accepting offers here. I guess the McClure supporters think this is a good thing. Circle the wagons and be damned the critics. Well, besides a lot of money to defend the suit ASU is going to have a terrible reputation both in Colorado and nationally.
February 14, 2016 at 7:34pm Has anyone seen this article from Foundation for Individual Rights in Education? ASU is becoming the laughing stock of higher education for its handling of this situation. Here it is: https://www.thefire.org/barred-from-adams-state-former-faculty-member-sues-over-an-utter-lack-of-due-process/
February 14, 2016 at 7:12pm She was supervising about FOUR employees as head of ACI in New Mexico. Bill Richardson gave her a cabinet position when he was the governor there, and subsequently she also contributed toward his presidential bid. And of course many years ago she was heading Clovis Community College in New Mexico. Perhaps BOT found these credentials impressive.
February 14, 2016 at 6:07pm Exactly what were President McClure's previous experiences that led the BOT to hire her? What is so impressive about her resume? I am just curious what her qualifications were to take the helm of ASU during troubled times. With massive education cuts for so many years, declining enrollments, and low faculty morale, what made her stand out?
February 14, 2016 at 5:37pm It is not surprising to see so many McClure sycophants posting. A large portion of ASU students are actually quite intellectually challenged and qualify as having fascist tendencies with their eagerness to follow a strong charismatic leader. You know, a Hitler/Mussolini type. I have encountered many ASU students and most would not be admitted to a real university, ie. U of C, CO State, KU, etc. Her supporters write generalized things about how the new administration is doing such great things. What things? Be specific.
February 14, 2016 at 3:52pm The ACLU does not file complaints in U.S. Federal District Courts based upon "BS."
February 14, 2016 at 1:47pm Per the faculty handbook, every ASU faculty member must sign the following Faculty Oath or Affirmation: "I solemnly (swear)(affirm) that I will uphold the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Colorado, and I will faithfully perform the duties of the position upon which I am about to enter." Every ASU faculty member, therefore, has a sworn DUTY to consider the constitutional issues at hand. Forget Danny, forget McClure. Forget about who you like, dislike, support, or don't support. Forget the unfortunate tone of some recent posts on this site (it's not exactly "robust academic discourse", to use McClure's recent words). Just focus on the constitutional issues being raised - a solid start would be a careful review of the ACLU of Colorado's filed complaint - and then determine what course of action is needed for you to uphold your personal affirmation. To dismiss this as merely a disgruntled personnel issue is to dismiss both the academic code and your responsibilities as an American citizen.
February 14, 2016 at 10:52am Adams is not fractured. Actually, it's never been stronger! There's true leadership and people see that things are getting done . Someone finally has the guts to stand up and not let someone like Danny get away with his BS.
February 14, 2016 at 9:03am It is clear that Adams is now a fractured institution. President McClure has been unable to bring the university together. She has listened to those who she should never have listened to in the first place. Her decisions which have led the university on this unfortunate path have been the direct result of her not following good and basic leadership principles. Mr. Ledonne is and will be a citizen of the valley regardless of the outcome of the ACLU lawsuit. However Dr. McClure will not be in Alamosa for a lengthy period of time. Adams has to unify, but it is unlikely it will happen under the inept presidency of Dr. McClure and those she is relying upon. This is a "created mess" by the ASU's administration and could have been avoided when she took over. With this lawsuit, declining enrollment, and the splintered organization, sooner or later, BOT will realize that they need to make a decision.
February 14, 2016 at 12:12am All of you who are so snidely supporting the administration and McClure are obviously uneducated with regard to the Constitution, 14th Amendment, and Supreme Court rulings on due process. I recommend you read the filing by the ACLU on this website's opening page. I guarantee you, ASU is going lose this case. You are going to spend a lot of money, receive unfavorable media coverage and ultimately lose. You cannot legally do what ASU did. I don't care what you think of the parties involved. In court, you will lose. Take it to the bank.
February 13, 2016 at 8:55pm Great stuff today. Lots of heat and no light. I have yet to see an informed comment that addresses the merits of the case or why exactly the PNG does not violate the Constitution. Any pro-PNG supporters care to do the reading and then explain your position? At least Jeff and Ben had the backbone to attempt an open dialogue at the faculty senate meeting and explain their concerns openly. If you read the complaint, it appears their concerns were justified - pretty much to the letter. They tried to warn the president for the benefit of ASU. Both spent many hours with Kurt Cary and Danny trying to negotiate a win-win resolution, but President McClure pulled the plug. You reap what you sow. As for implications for careers, were you threatening Jeff or Ben? I think you need to be PNG'ed right out of here. I'd be more concerned for President McClure's career. When the real lawyers look at the chain of events, there will be a sudden change.
February 13, 2016 at 6:02pm Oh, and to the person who had a "living hell" for two years because of e-mails and texts -- dude, you sound like a pervert and stalker! I wish they would have kicked out out of ASU. Better yet, thrown you in jail for harassment...
February 13, 2016 at 5:55pm If you have a problem with someone, go and talk to them rather than post (anonymously) on a website that nobody cares about! But, that's all this is -- a bunch of anonymous cry-babies. Get a life! At first, this has promise of being a place for dialogue but has become a bulletin board for angry people. Really? If you don't like ASU then leave! Please! Do us all a favor and ditch town. This has become, "ouch, my feelings are hurt so someone kiss the boo boo and make it go away." If there is a real argument it has been lost with all of the whiners with no life.
February 13, 2016 at 5:50pm This, and the danny followers, get more and more pathetic. It's actually very funny and has given a lot of people stuff to laugh at. That's what the majority of people at ASU are doing with this -- laughing at you all! I find it curious that those who post that they work at ASU are posting during work hours. Are you posting on an ASU computer too? That's a great use of taxpayer and student money....NOT. If we are going to name names - let's call out Jeff Elison and Ben Waddell as being the sad, sad danny followers. Anyone else? These guys don't have a freak'n clue about the ramifications of this for their careers. But, doubt if they care because they would be doing their jobs rather than being danny's little bodyguards.
February 13, 2016 at 12:07pm Whoever it was that feels the need to insult and talk down to our student government needs to come to one meeting and realize that most of ASF are working students who commute and CHOOSE to go above and beyond to serve on committees and represent campus.
February 13, 2016 at 9:49am Dr. McClure has done so many amazing things for our campus. From her first day here she has worked nonstop to promote ASU, bring investors, bring grants, strengthen community partnerships, and she actually listens to what students have to say. ASU is strong, I am a ASU student and I support Dr. McClure.
February 12, 2016 at 8:27pm If everyone who made someone at ASU "feel threatened," Bill Mansheim and Michael Martin would have been given PNG status long ago.
February 12, 2016 at 7:36pm Honey Badger Crowther fits right in with Tracy Rogers and Frank Novotny. Back stabbing, fake, ambitious power seeking devils. As long as they are there the stench over Alamosa will remain. I wonder if Crowther wore his favorite t-shirt, "I'm not an alcoholic, Alcoholics go to meetings. I'm a drunk," first time he met the new president. He wore it to meet the new provost years ago. As for as the members of student government loving the new president, it is well known that SGA is merely a collection of ass kissing immature boys and girls led around by the nose by the Dean of Students. They are resume builders and nothing more. They are far out of touch with most of the student body. Most ASU students commute and work to pay for school. SGA does not concern themselves with these students.
February 12, 2016 at 7:14pm I was treated unfairly by Adams just as LeDonne, suspended for two years for nothing more than texting a scorned love interest. Something that, at other institutions, would have been a minor infraction. Adams state read the contents of my personal email account and punished me according to that and not the actual incident. The "victim" attempted to drop all charges. I returned to Adams (after 2 years) and was again subjected to their paranoid, irrational treatment when a female employee of theirs complained because I was exercising my constitutional right to free speech and used a "risque" subject line in an email to her, after she approached me first. They again punished me for the offense two years prior, and subjected me to mandatory psychologic evaluation, and probation for the remainder of my academic career. Ken Marquez made my life a living hell for absolutely no reason whatsoever. I was an honor student for the remainder of my time there and graduated with a B.S. Adams state is way too reactionary and paranoid and I'm glad to see someone calling them out on their alarmist reactions to people from diverse backgrounds. If you aren't a woman or a gay man I strongly suggest you avoid Adams State University.
February 12, 2016 at 2:47pm A previous comment included the statements: "The lawsuit is bogus and just causing unnecessary problems for Adams and Alamosa." Bogus? Is this an informed opinion? Have you read the 50-page complaint against McClure and Grohowski? Do you understand the "due process" portion of the Fourteenth Amendment? Unless you can answer yes to both of those, then "bogus" is merely uniformed opinion. And if you really want to be informed on the issue, read the case summary from Watson v. C.U. Board of Regents. There you will find a nearly identical case, which C.U. lost. Watson, the citizen in that case, actually went to a dean's house, threatened him, and was arrested. Yet, the Colo Supreme Court still upheld his right to due process. Danny is entitled to the same protections under the Constitution. Your emotional responses have nothing to do with the facts. Whatever is in that mysterious file is nearly irrelevant to the legal issue of due process. Authorities like to make emotional appeals to fear because people fall for it. "Oh no, Homeland Security has raised the alert level, let's all fall in line behind our government for protection. Laws no longer matter... torture is justified... due process is expendable..." The commentator goes on to say the suit is "just causing unnecessary problems for Adams and Alamosa." What is really causing those problems, the lawsuit or is it an administration that disregarded the Constitution? A point on which we probably agree: the quicker this gets resolved, the better. Less money will be wasted on legal fees, and less time will be wasted on campus. We should be serving our students, not defending indefensible administrative decisions.
February 12, 2016 at 12:12pm As someone who has felt threatened (not just creeped/weirded out) by Danny, I know that things can now be revealed about why he was kicked off campus. The lawsuit is bogus and just causing unnecessary problems for Adams and Alamosa. I look forward to having everything in that "file" looked at and, I hope, made public.
February 12, 2016 at 11:50am As what some people might label a Danny "cronie," I'm glad to see the "other side" participating on Watching Adams. Open dialogue is extremely important for a University. I'm sure Dr. McClure has many strengths and brings much to ASU. My problem has to do with civil rights and the U.S. Constitution. To me, it looks like bullying when people in power violate the civil rights of people with less power. Our Constitution is supposed to protect everyone, not just those in power. And I'm bothered even more when people don't admit their mistakes and then lie to cover them up ("terrorism," "State Police watchlist"). If an ACLU lawsuit will make ASU administration follow laws and our own policies, then bring it on. But personally, I'd rather have administration follow laws and policies voluntarily, drop the PNG, and save those substantial legal fees for students and employees.
February 12, 2016 at 11:08am Ditto! I'm also a student/junior at ASU and a member of AS&F -- the majority of our membership supports dr. McClure and we want her to stay and see things through. People need to listen to who matters - the students! Everyone needs to stop spreading lies and false data saying that we don't support her
February 12, 2016 at 11:02am Thank you, thank you, thank you to the person who posted in support of ASU. I really wanted to avoid writing anything on Watching Adams but the amount of negativity is finally getting to me. Everyone saying that "nobody supports Dr. McClure" is totally false! I've heard nothing but positive things about her and the work she has done. In fact, she's done more in less than a year than the previous administration did in over ten years. The students, faculty, staff and community are glad that she ws hired!
February 12, 2016 at 8:55am I sincerely doubt that my note will be published as I'm sure Danny and his cronies are monitoring/editing/evaluating everything. After reading a few of the items on this website, I am fully convinced that you all have NO lives, families, or jobs. Get real! This crusade is the most pathetic display of selfishness that I've ever known. The only thing worse than Danny's little "fight" with ASU are the people who are blindly following this crap. I am also guessing that the people posting to this site number less than 10 (you all just have nothing better to do). For what it's worth, the majority of the campus and community truly support Dr. McClure and her efforts. While Danny and his followers are busy creating nonsense, the rest of us are working hard to keep ASU afloat and thriving. I have now just wasted five minutes of my life writing this note. I can only hope that the rest of you realize how pathetic you all are... ---Editor's Note: So long as a comment meets the posting guidelines, we publish every comment. Your perspective is valid and your time spent posting is welcome and appreciated.
February 11, 2016 at 11:18pm I have to agree with an earlier comment about Crowther. During the years I worked at ASU, I saw him pull some outrageous maneuvers. He will do anything to suck up to the administration. He'll shake your hand and smile at you, "Honey Badger," as he stabs you in the back.
February 11, 2016 at 10:07pm I agree with the previous writer. President McClure has lost the confidence of faculty, staff, and students. All of this can go away if she goes away, Tracy Rogers resigns, the Board give a full and complete public apology to Danny, pay him for expenses and suffering. And look for a new president. This time someone with a Ph.D who spent at least a decade in the classroom teaching.
February 11, 2016 at 6:11pm Dr. McClure has lost confidence of the majority of her staff and faculty. If a college president comes to this place in her or his professional career, they should resign for the sake of the institution and the students.
February 11, 2016 at 4:56pm One of the comments discusses Frank Novotny and Tracy Rogers as: "Certainly, those two individuals are the very foundation of everything wrong at ASU. If there is a problem, enough investigation ultimately reveals these two are the root." I write to concur and add one additional name to this list. Careful observation and investigation will reveal that Dr. Ed Crowther is a full time member of this axis of evil. He runs his department with an iron fist and constantly brags how his "kingdom" ( departments, majors, minors, disciplines, faculty, staff, and students ) make him one of the most powerful people on campus, not to mention he "makes more money than God" for all the various disciplines and people he has serving (under?) him. He is a glad hander, ambitious, sycophant of those in power, and expect those "under" him to swallow their pride and be a cult follower and sycophant of Crowther. Apparently not even driving through stop signs while under the influence of alcohol can get him in trouble with administration. But enough about this soldier, the axis of evil Luca Brasi. I only mention this to give full credit (blame?) to all three in the axis of evil. Frank and Tracy are, indeed, dangerous, but Luca the wild, loud head of the McDaniel Hall Family should not be left out. My hopes are that publicity of all this reaches readers far and wide. I hope Colorado parents warn their children against ASU. I hope The Chronicle Of Higher Education jumps on this with weekly updates. I hope enrollments and retention decline and cause massive terminations of people in Richardson Hall. I hope faculty, staff, and students who find themselves being bullied, intimidated, threatened, and treated unfairly do not just take it but fight. Fight like Danny. Do not just give in to this axis of evil. And I hope others who are in the know of the dirt that covers Richardson Hall and its "elites" will write comments to this site, talk to Danny about an interview, share what you learn with others. I fully support Danny and am ecstatic that the ACLU has taken his case. The ACLU is the real deal President McClure. I think you need solid legal advice, so avoid Tracy Rogers or any local attorneys at all costs.
February 11, 2016 at 11:35am I have been following Watchingadams.org since its inception. Quietly, I have listened to many individuals—on both sides of this conundrum—discuss why Danny or Dr. McClure is “right” or “wrong”. I have been cautiously optimistic that Dr. McClure was simply a victim—as many, many of us have been—of Frank Novotny’s and Tracy Rogers’ lying, conniving, and evil practices. Certainly, those two individuals are the very foundation of everything wrong at ASU. If there is a problem, enough investigation ultimately reveals these two are the root. So, imagine my surprise—and dismay—to learn that an organization as reputable and successful as the ACLU has chosen to take on this fight on Danny’s behalf. Imagine how one’s heart sinks when they have supported something or someone—even though cautiously—only to learn that perhaps that support was misguided or misplaced. This is not to say I didn’t support Danny…In fact, I did and still do. I never have believed the PNG was appropriate. I believed that the minions surrounding Dr. McClure misinformed her. But, it is time to admit that Dr. McClure has CHOSEN her path, regardless of who has informed her. As a cautious Dr. McClure supporter, I think she’s f’ed. And, I am not alone in this thinking… pride is an interesting and wicked thing.
February 11, 2016 at 9:12am In president McClure's response to the law suit she falls back on a dangerous justification: "an abundance of caution." The dangers of this phrase are discussed here: http://www.bifurcatedneedle.com/new-blog/2015/7/22/out-of-an-abundance-of-caution-an-overused-phrase From the article: "It allows businesses, schools, leaders in the government, and others in charge to enact policies that are scientifically unfounded but potentially irrational and, sometimes, to INFRINGE UPON THE RIGHTS OF OTHERS. " [emphasis added] "The phrase, 'out of an abundance of caution,' is often used when explaining an action that isn’t necessary, but is going to be done anyway because you want to be extra careful. Unfortunately, this throws the whole decision making process for a loop, because it assumes that there are no consequences for overly cautious and unnecessary actions. Yet these actions always have a COST – in money, resources, time and, sometimes, CIVIL LIBERTIES. " [emphasis added] We have already seen the COST to civil liberties in Mr. Ledonne's case, as well as the administration's own admission that they were spending 150 hours / week on their PNG decision. Now it looks like there will be further COSTS as ASU wastes money defending their "abundance of caution." I'd rather see that time and money go to employees and students!
February 11, 2016 at 8:26am The hastily prepared and reactively long missive to us by Beverlee in response to ACLU filing just shows that she, the administration, and BOT have now found themselves in a situation which could easily have been avoided much earlier. As more news media pick up the story it will have a negative impact on enrollment, retention, and employee morale. Beverlee has received an 'F' grade so far in leadership, management, and interpersonal skills. There are consequences if a student receives a similar failing grade consistently.
February 11, 2016 at 8:01am From the ACLU press release: “We bring this lawsuit to protect the rights of not just Mr. Ledonne, but all Coloradoans,” said ACLU of Colorado cooperating attorney N. Reid Neureiter. Yes indeed, all Coloradoans need protection from ASU. The president's cabinet recently passed a Persona Non Grata policy that intentionally leaves out the due process (hearing prior to imposition of PNG status) that Ledonne was denied, prompting this law suit. In other words, the cabinet members decided the Constitution was too inconvenient, too limiting of ASU's powers. So, they decided to ignore it and pass an ASU policy that violates the U.S. Constitution. Putting their disregard for Coloradoans' civil rights in writing does not bode well for ASU in this law suit.
February 10, 2016 at 8:22pm The contrast between the professionalism of the ACLU's 25-page legal motion and ASU's half-assed response is hilarious. The president's message has multiple errors, she ignores the due process claims, and resorts to more mud-slinging against Mr. Ledonne. How much money will McClure waste in her lame attempts to save face? She should just admit she was wrong and save more embarrassment. More importantly, she should save some of that legal defense money for students and employees, rather than squander it trying to save her own career. It looks like ASU is against the ropes financially, so it's way past time to do the right thing. The bluff is over. Let's move forward for the sake of students.
February 10, 2016 at 3:33pm Bravo! Bravo Danny for not just taking it but standing up for yourself and your principles. I hope Richardson Hall, the Board, and citizens now realize just how deep the hole Richardson Hall has dug for itself is. Do not even think you can bully the ACLU. You brought this on your selves. After years of abuse of faculty and staff it is now time to face the consequences. All those who have been abused by administration, including tyrannical department chairs, applaud Danny and the ACLU. Whatchya gonna do now Madam President? Spend a lot of money defending your actions, being negatively exposed in the media, continue to see enrollments and retention decline, get savaged by the Chronicle of Higher Education.....Richardson Hall needs to be fumigated and the Board needs to be removed. Bravo Danny, bravo ACLU!
February 10, 2016 at 1:33pm As I read through today's ACLU filing of suit against ASU, the main thought that came to my mind was: WHERE ARE ASU's BOARD OF TRUSTEES? Hopefully there is at least one trustee who might be wondering at this point if Beverlee McClure was the right selection to lead ASU???
February 10, 2016 at 1:07pm I read the comment from the Classified Employee posted on [Jan 26th]. I am also a classified employee and proud of my race, language, customs, and where I have come from. Below is an e-mail, word for word, which went out to Classified Employees on January 29, 2016: "CIELO believes that the photos of past Presidents in Richardson Hall might work better if they were placed in the museum. The photos are not very "warm" and do not reflect our student body (white, male, etc.). Please understand this is no disrespect to the past presidents, it is about making the space more welcoming to students. Would you support having these moved to a different location so that something more student centered can be placed there? Please let me know as soon as possible so I can provide your feedback to the CIELO committee. Thank you and have a wonderful weekend." I am not sure how others felt when they received this e-mail, but I just went WOW!
February 5, 2016 at 2:00pm So the early word on the street is that enrollment numbers aren’t looking so hot. No surprise to anyone walking around campus. I was in the union the other day and found myself wondering where all the students were. I believe I heard my footsteps echoing. When the official statistics come out, the last thing anyone wants to hear from Richardson Hall is that tired line, “Recruitment and retention are everyone’s responsibility.” Of course they are. In a certain sense, everything is everyone’s responsibility. But administration should be forewarned not to lob any finger-pointing platitudes in any direction except their own. You can’t dismiss and devalue your faculty and staff until disaster looms, then try to pull us in to share your culpability for the mess. Hold up a mirror, kids. You’re the ones who got us here. You did this. And we all know you have no idea how to get us out of it, so stop pretending that everything’s fine. You know what I’d like to see? A campus roundtable where administrators comes clean, confess they’ve driven ASU into the ground with their ineptitude, arrogance, and lack of direction. Admit they don’t have the answers. Ask for help and answers and action from the ones who really matter, the ones who really count: The faculty and staff who interact directly with students everyday. Together we might be able to turn things around. But if RH keeps acting like everything’s fine, like they’re the big bosses on campus and we should just shut up and put up, it’s all going down in a very ugly way. But please, please: No more theatrical events like that utterly bogus campus forum we endured last year regarding the Chronicle accusations and resulting HLC investigation. That was a poorly concealed, obviously orchestrated “press conference” performed by those with vested monetary interests in Extended Studies. The one person on the “panel” who dared to speak somewhat candidly found themselves on the receiving end of glares from the other participants. We all saw it. And so attendees all knew better than to try to contribute anything truthful and substantive. Most, wisely, said nothing at all. Let’s end the pretending. Only a big platter of honesty and a side serving of humble pie from RH will move us out of this very scary place we’re in right now. Trustees? Hello?
February 3, 2016 at 10:18am Concerning the cult climate at Adams, you might want to read an article in the Sept. 10th (I think) issue of New York Times Magazine. It describes the corporatization of higher ed institutions where, like any corporation, protection of the institution is way more important than helping people, the truth, or doing what should be right. When the Navajo walkers were here last fall, a lady wore a shirt proclaiming "Capitalism Is The Mortal Enemy of Mother Earth." And I would add, just about everything else. The corporate mentality is infecting everything and that is extremely bad for everyone but the top 10 percent. Since the current ASU president came from a corporate climate, I'd be very concerned with her policies and ethics.
February 3, 2016 at 12:08am As someone without a personal connection to ASU or the community of Alamosa, I find it disturbing and sadly ridiculous that recent actions undertaken by ASU administration seem to be aimed at preserving an existing power structure on campus, and eliminating open discourse instead of simply addressing their own long-standing nonfeasance. It is also beyond me how the people tasked with running a university can be so terribly misguided and embarrassingly out of touch with not only the communities they serve but with the faculty and staff that actually fulfill the schools mission. With Watching Adams help in increasing public awareness of the mess that is ASU administration governance, surely it's only a matter of time before a big plate of crow is laid out for President McClure and her admin. underlings.
January 26, 2016 at 6:31pm To whom it may interest, I am an employee of Adams State. I am just a classified employee, which equates to lowest form of employee on the campus. I saw and read something today that really upset me and there is nothing or nowhere to take this. If I contact the infamous HR department, I might as well kiss my paycheck goodbye. I know better than upset the apple cart. This administration talks a good game on diversity and being sensitive to each persons feelings and well being but there is no place to go if your not in lock step with the administration's beliefs. Here is the item that insulted me as a man and my race. It was an article, instructions and suggestions on how to denounce my race and declare that, because of my race, that I am a racist and until I do the following I will remain a racist. I, hopefully along with the majority of people, am proud of who I am, where I came from, what my ancestors and I have accomplished. This type of political attack should not be allowed but we all know that the school will do nothing but let's be clear that the real crime here is there is No place for me to go and voice my concerns. It would be a death sentence. ---Editor's note: for more on this comment see White Privilege at ASU: an Interview with a Classified Employee.
January 20, 2016 at 10:24am In the context of fairness and campus-wide “equity”, as reflected by inclusion of the topic on the Faculty Senate agenda for January 27, more than a few faculty members may find interesting the salaries awarded Drs. Novotny and Mumper upon their “decisions” to “step down” to faculty status from their respective administrative positions.
December 10, 2015 at 2:14am I was sorry to learn of the termination of campus police chief Joel Shults. I found Joel to be professional, well educated, committed to the institution, and quite likeable. Although we are pretty much at opposite poles of ideology, I really enjoyed our chats over coffee and grew to respect Joel. From what I have heard he was treated in a harsh, arbitrary, and mean spirited way. If readers are learning anything from this site it is that Adams State does not provide anything approaching due process. The head of HR, Tracy Rogers, advises administration and her lack of proper legal education has become quite clear. Knowing what I know about the favored position of athletics at Adams, I believe he was terminated because he refused to go along with the Adams administration and certain members of the Board who wanted athletic students and coaches to do as they wished. I have heard many negative things about the men's basketball coach and believe Adams decided their basketball coach was more valuable than a quality chief of police. It looks like the new president has a fellow authoritarian in the office of chief of police now.
December 4, 2015 at 9:26am Dr. McClure you have indeed transformed ASU. It has gone from a fairly ineffectual relatively benign culture, with some exceptions, to one of suspicion and distrust from an overtly adversarial administration. One no longer has to imagine what people behind the former Iron Curtain experienced. The campus environment is one of bullying and baseless allegations leading to punitive measures where the accused has no reasonable defense. Those around you do not seem to have the slightest concept of due process. Your apparatchiks consistently parrot with pavlovian fervor signaling in the affirmative to your utterly baseless allegations of dangerous behavior of one or cast the evil eye at any one else who dares to differ with respectful queries regarding questionable practices on campus. There is a great appearance of a lack of any valid attempt to consider as to whether the so called “toxic” or “negative” individuals just might have valid points that could improve the situational health of the campus. When being questioned on why approved legal practices were not enacted when dealing with an individual who has been stamped with the red letter of “terrorism”, your convenient response is that the question is sexist in nature. This of course makes the questioner sexist by the association of merely to have the audacity to ask a reasonable question. This is a convenient and cowardly way to avoid giving an answer to what as many suspect is that you have no appropriate defense and must fall back on the current flavor of PC McCarthyism to deflect blame. There has developed an unhealthy schism between faculty, staff and students by this toxic campaign. Anyone who dares walk outside of the clearly delineated path is treated as a heretic to be shunned, ostracized and have their livelihood made to feel insecure. The motto for ASU should be changed to “sit down and shut up” or as we have heard reported frequently by many, “if you don’t like it, you can leave”. This is a free speech issue Dr. McClure. Yes, everyone can speak their mind in your presence but that “freedom” does not come without consequences and misrepresentation. The true shame of this predicament is that many of those who have been tarred and feathered as “toxic” or “negative” care and are deeply saddened by the situation at ASU. Their unheeded attempts to cite where serious problems lie are based on observations from the field, day in and day out. They are your boots on the ground. They are reaching out with a helping hand only to be, as previously stated, shunned, ostracized and have their livelihood made to feel insecure. As Lincoln aptly stated, “a house divided against itself cannot stand.”
December 3, 2015 at 9:35am With Frank Novotny stepping down, it is high time for Beverlee McClure to start taking stock of her actions as a new ASU President. She needs to go back and educate herself about the fundamentals of being a successful university president and take notice of the advice offered in this article, which she has been oblivious about up till now: http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB10001424052702304893404579530204036842732
December 2, 2015 at 10:59am I sure wish I was still at Adams. I was a free thinking non-conformist while there and would be fighting the fight with Danny. I had great relationships with students and might even encourage them to voice their opinions. But then I would fall victim to one of McClure's PNG labels and be banned from campus. Maybe a campus-wide vote should be scheduled on whether McClure is best labelled a PNG threat.
December 2, 2015 at 10:49am It is 11:30 AM. I rarely drink, and rarely drink this early. But the news of Frank Novotny leaving his vpaa position to return to teaching is just such sweet news. He had wanted Svaldi's position for so long and now his administrative ambition has been zapped. I also heard that Ed Crowther was driving and pulled over. Of course, like any true alcoholic, he had been drinking. I need to find the police report in the paper. [comment previously redacted due to potential libel]. So two of the axis of evil have fallen on bad times. Miss Tracy Rogers is so far a survivor under the new dictatorship, er, leadership of President McClure. If the president reads these comments I can assure her that Crowther will be a thorn in her side, and while cleaning house she should deal with him right up front. ---Addendum 12/4/15: The deleted part of my earlier comment (deemed potentially libelous) had to do with a FACT. Earlier in the year one of the axis of evil, Dr. Ed Crowther, was reported in the press to have run a stop sign while under the influence. This is not libelous but is a fact. I just want parents, students, and citizens to know what one of McClure's sycophants was up to. A subscriber to the Valley News might do a check if this was the first time. I believe the accumulation of points is now in the neighborhood of twelve. ------Editor's reply: Watching Adams has done some preliminary investigation and determined that the claim regarding Dr. Crowther's alleged moving vehicle violation is true. Via the Alamosa Police Report "May 13th, 2015: Edward Riley Crowther, 55, Alamosa, was summoned for disregarding a stop sign at a through highway, 4 points, and for DUI, 12 points, at Clark Street and Craft Drive." At this time, we encourage readers to investigate the matter further and form their own opinion of the matter.
December 2, 2015 at 10:15am Contradictions, loss of trust, and no direction. The emails sent to ASU staff, faculty, and students regarding campus safety, retirements, resignations are just plain distracting. How are we as an institution supposed to be productive? There seems to be no aim for true resolution to the issues on our campus. Even though there are many problems that are glaring they seem to be ignored. Is it ethical for those in higher administration to just retire or resign? What message are you sending? It is clear that even though behaviors that deem to be a reason to get fired have no strong repercussions. The elite are always protected. Beverlee McClure will never get the respect that she yearns for until heads in higher administration roll. Lately at several administrative meetings we have heard her talk about gender bias, and men not respecting her because she is a female in charge. However it seems more submissive to let people in higher administration who have been so disruptive to our work environment just resign. Where is the strong willed woman that we saw in the campus interviews? We want her back with a vengeance.
December 1, 2015 at 12:44pm Hearing today that Dr. Novotny has decided to go back to faculty starting Fall 2016 was not a surprise to me because I worked closely with him for 8 years and for the past two and one half years, after being flown out “Flight for Life” he has struggled with a chronic health issue. I know rumors will fly but I know for a fact that his decision was based on what is best for him and his family. I would like to leave you with a quote from Shannon L. Alder – “When dealing with critics always remember this: Critics judge things based on what is outside of their content of understanding.”
November 27, 2015 at 6:10pm There is an axis of evil at ASU. McClure adds one more crypto-fascist. Beware of Novotny, Tracy Rogers, and Ed Crowther. They run the place like they own it. Crowther runs his HAPPSS department like his little kingdom. Tracy Rogers does not understand the federal or state constitutions nor statutes. Novotny is frustrated, wants to be president, can't make any headway, so he abuses what powers he does have. Decent people, like Michael Mumper, have had their authority diminished. If an honest job could be done rather than a "good ole boy" cover up, ASU would be found to be so mismanaged that it should be shut down. And students are right, graduates are leaving here totally unprepared for careers and life. ASU has almost no academic standards. If a student can pay tuition they are welcome here. Many professors are more like middle school teachers than university professors. Add to this the favored place of athletics. Football players are notorious for throwing parties where young women are taken advantage of, and worse. Damon Martin is almost in the axis of evil. He gets whatever he wants, regardless of cost. I have no doubt that Danny has been exploited and now treated illegally. He is being denied his constitutional rights and his character under constant attack. ASU has no sense of shame. The powers that be use taxpayer monies for their personal agendas. As long as Danny continues to fight and this site is up I will continue to post-the truth.
November 24, 2015 at 4:12am Dr. McClure clearly does not know what to say and when to say it. First her use of the word "terrorism" publicly regarding Mr. Ledonne's actions, and now her blatant and outright lie about Danny being on a "watchlist" are indications that she is not fit to lead a state institution or any other institution. Wonder where are the BOT???
November 20, 2015 at 10:52am The Board of Trustees for Adams State unanimously approved a new Guaranteed Tuition program for undergraduate students enrolled in on-campus classes. This program put together by the administration, under Dr. McClure's leadership, is an amazing step towards affordability and helping students graduate. Dr. McClure will be visiting AS&F meeting to discuss Persona Non Grata and all relating issues. Students are highly encouraged to come with any questions, concerns, or comments. The meeting Monday November 23rd at 6 pm BUS 142. If you have any further questions or comments please contact me. Azarel Madrigal email@example.com
November 17, 2015 at 11:00pm The email to the students by Dr. McClure is a joke! The email sounds like a middle school teacher communicating with her students. It undermines the intellectual level and capabilities of students. The tone of the email is condescending and patronizing. It is an insult to the students.
November 16, 2015 at 11:10am I want to thank you for the honest and difficult work that you are doing; for challenging the "norms" deemed acceptable by ASU. Working in Administration and "near the President's Office," I can tell you that no superior or preferential treatment is given; barely over minimum-wage pay, lack of praise in accomplishment (actually non-existent); fearful to speak out against campus norms-even for the betterment of student services. I do wish that your website and this media coverage would change ASUs condemning and disparaging environment. Conforming and ingratiating ourselves with the ASU bureaucracy is not acceptable, nor is it beneficial to our student population or community.
November 15, 2015 at 8:28pm I have been a community member and/or student here in Alamosa and at Adams State for five years now. I have met, spoken with and been in the company of Mr. Ledonne several times. he is always pleasant, and although he has opinions that challenge the dominant paradigms of economics, politics and education, I have never experienced any indications of threatening or violent behavior. To “blanket ban” a person from ASU events and properties here in our small community effectively cuts them off from others, isolating and segregating them from many of the events and activities offered here in the SLV, many of which are associated with ASU. To have issued this blanket ban to a person identified as “low risk” and for no specific reason is, in my opinion, in complete opposition to the core function of an academic institution. Further, it violates ASU’s motto of “great stories begin here…” or perhaps once they have begun, and begin to question the staus quo, they must move elsewhere. I, for one, am not impressed. Much is made here at ASU about inclusivity, tolerance and awareness of cultural differences. We are a Hispanic Serving Institution. Recently, there was a campus-wide effort to educate and increase sensitivity about LGBTQ+ issues. Why, exactly, is Mr. Ledonne being singled out for exclusion? Is it because he has a voice? Because he has an audience? Because he expresses opinions you do not agree with and you are afraid that his audience might grow? As a citizen, I must protest this arbitrary censorship. If there are, indeed, reasons to bar Mr. Ledonne (and/or others), let us hear them. This particular incident has already caused public humiliation for the person being targeted; what further harm could come from enumerating those reasons? Lack of knowledge causes fear, and withholding knowledge specifically to engender fear is a tactic unworthy of an institution that receives funds from a government founded on principles that have endured for millennia. Put away the hemlock, President McClure and Chief Grohowski, and remove the ban against Mr. Ledonne unless you can prove with evidence that he poses a clear threat to the students and this campus.
November 14, 2015 at 8:28am The problem ASU admin is having is that their credibility is running on empty for many students, faculty, and staff nowadays - and they know it!
November 13, 2015 at 9:53am Watching Adams recently posted an ASU press release. A couple of observations: If Danny really is such an imminent threat to campus safety, why would the institution identify one of the complainants as “the former president”. Hmm, who could that possibly be? Aren’t you just putting a big target on Svaldi’s forehead? Isn't this yet another confidentiality violation? Amateur hour. Rapidly descending into absurdity. And to suggest that academic freedom is a concept limited to the four walls of a classroom puts their institutional ignorance on full regal display.
November 12, 2015 at 8:40pm The senior administration staff, who have negatively affected the growth and success of Adams State for many years, are still in power. They are the real personae non gratae. One can not even come close to comparing the damage they have done, and keep on doing it, to ASU with any actions of Danny Ledonne. Beverlee McClure has the wrong persona non grata or personae non gratae!
November 12, 2015 at 12:12am The Board of Trustees' email only reveals how out of touch they are with what actually happens on campus. First, their denial that this is a First Amendment issue is ridiculous. What about "the right of the people peaceably to assemble"? Danny is no longer allowed on public property. What about the effect it has on faculty and staff? I'm a professor. My colleagues and I are afraid that speaking up will be met with retaliation. We will likely be labeled "toxic" by our President. Second, the BOT's statement, "We urge you, our faculty and staff, to continue in your dedicated work to serve students and move Adams State forward in a positive manner," sickens me. The statement is condescending and they fail to recognize the value and dedication of their employees. They have no idea how dedicated most ASU faculty and staff are. Why else would we be here, given our low pay? The bottom line is that we love helping students. We have the intelligence to, and are quite capable of, giving our students 100% while keeping track of the Administrative circus all around us. When I walk into the classroom, I give it my all; I am completely absorbed. So, who is creating the distractions? Who is keeping Adams State from moving forward in a positive manner? Administration much more than Ledonne. Let it go, give up this reckless course of action. ASU doesn't need the bad publicity. Administration is far more of a threat to the well-being of ASU than Danny Ledonne. Who IS serving our students on a day-to-day basis? Staff and faculty. Listen to your people. They have valid concerns about shared governance, Administration's violations of policies, students' well-being, and salaries. To tell a whole university full of intelligent people to "keep your head down, ignore the problems" is patronizing and unrealistic. BOT, it is time to pay attention. You may have thought this was a cushy position, but it comes with responsibility. Be realistic about what is best for your students, faculty, and staff.
November 11, 2015 at 6:22pm The challenge of leadership is to be strong, but not rude. Be kind, but not weak. Be bold, but not bully. Be thoughtful, but not lazy. Be humble, but not timid. Be proud, but not arrogant. – Jim Rohn It is clear that Adams State University has NOT found a leader in President Beverlee McClure. In my opinion, a simple one-on-one conversation between President McClure and Danny Ledonne could have saved a lot of time, heartache, and potentially money if Mr. Ledonne decides to make President McClure (and ASU) pay for the slanderous, libelous, words they have said against his character. I’ve seen no proof of a threat to the safety of students, faculty, or staff. In fact, ASU administration admits “we do not find an actionable threat at this time”; “Mr. Ledonne's behavior has not yet breached the realm of violation of our laws.” So why the rush to ban him from campus? If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck….. This appears to be a clear case of retaliation and a violation of Mr. Ledonne’s civil rights.
November 11, 2015 at 11:53am Be careful when you blindly follow the masses. Sometimes the “m” is silent. ~Unknown
November 10, 2015 at 1:27pm Surprised and disappointed by the recent ASU Board of Trustees email sent to all ASU employees. Instead of looking into the allegations and indicating that it is their responsibility to thoroughly investigate all issues and non-compliance of rules and regulations at ASU, they want us to believe that there is nothing wrong at ASU and all of this is just the doings of a disgruntled ex-employee.
November 10, 2015 at 1:27pm Surprised and disappointed by the recent ASU Board of Trustees email sent to all ASU employees. Instead of looking into the allegations and indicating that it is their responsibility to thoroughly investigate all issues and non-compliance of rules and regulations at ASU, they want us to believe that there is nothing wrong at ASU and all of this is just the doings of a disgruntled ex-employee.
November 8, 2015 at 9:16pm President McClure and Chief Grohowski have sunk from "irrational behavior" to "harassment" to "toxic" to "terrorism"... what could possibly be next? The FBI defines terrorism as "acts dangerous to human life that violate federal or state laws." So, in the Valley Courier article, President McClure just publicly accused Mr. Ledonne of violating state or federal laws, yet Chief Grohowski's email included "Mr. Ledonne's behavior has not yet breached the realm of violation of our laws." Is this amateur hour? Don't they understand that "harassment," "slander," and "libel" have legal definitions - definitions that apply to their own behavior? Mr. Ledonne's lawyer must be smiling wider and wider everyday, with dollar signs in his or her eyes. Seriously, it is time for President McClure to act professionally and rescind the persona non grata order before she wastes anymore valuable ASU time and money, both of which could be better used to help students!
November 8, 2015 at 8:16pm It is clear from the callow comments made by the ASU President, as published in the recent Valley Courier article, that she is not equipped to lead the institution. Unfortunately her statements portray her as a clueless leader who is unaware of the spirit and pulse of Adams State University, the local community, and its citizens.
November 8, 2015 at 4:14pm This website is disgusting. Danny Ledonne is a sick man, I'm glad Adams State University let this guy go. How can a man that made a game about a tragic event in history and say he could make it because he was affected by it. No human being should or never make a game about the death of several people. You need to get a life stop ruining the lives of others. ---Editor's reply: If you'd like to learn more about the purpose and impact of "Super Columbine Massacre RPG!" you might consider watching the documentary on the topic: http://playingcolumbine.com/ Columbine has been the subject of plays, movies, documentaries, books, songs, magazine articles, and much more. Fundamentally, interactive media should also be a possible tool for understanding difficult and socially-urgent topics. So how can a man make a game about a tragic event in history and say he could make it because he was affected by it? The same way another person could make a film, write a book, or create a painting about that same topic. ------Reply November 9, 2015 at 7:21pm That doesn't mean you should be disrespectful and take the issue as a joke. If you see another production make fun a disability, would you too? Would you agree that making a game to reenacts the day most families hate to remember and all they see is a rpg reenact the death of their loved ones, NO! Instead of bring bad memories back, why not create a better understanding what to do to prevent these attacks from being influenced. I've watched thw documentary of your RPG, and it continues to bring me to see that you are not human. ---------Editor's reply: As is evident in the dozens of interviews Danny Ledonne has done on the topic, he does not view school shootings disrespectfully or as a joke. He has personally met with and befriended school shooting survivors from Columbine and Dawson College during the production of "Playing Columbine" and has demonstrated serious commitment to the issue of rampage shootings and representations of violence in media. It is possible that you are viewing the Columbine RPG as a joke; game critics and theorists who understand the medium disagree. For example: Shawn Rider, Editor In Chief of Alternative Games wrote: "Super Columbine Massacre RPG is not a great game. But it is an important game. It is a game created by a filmmaker, not a game developer. In fact, Ledonne told the Washington Post that he would not make another game. It was created specifically with the intent of generating discussion and presenting a unique perspective on the events of the Columbine shooting. This may not be the future of gaming, but it is a step towards the future of how games will be treated and viewed in our culture--as artful, meaningful objects which represent the thoughts, ideas, dreams and nightmares of a unique creator." Medical professionals would strongly contend that Danny Ledonne is human. He may not think like you do or view the role of interactive media in society the way you do, but that's the principal insight of a pluralistic society with freedom of expression.
November 8, 2015 at 9:34am I had heard the rumors on campus, but they seemed too far-fetched to believe, that is until the first Valley Courier article came out: could President McClure be a naive victim of sabotage from within? The rumor hypothesizes that Frank Novotny and Tracy Rogers have set up McClure for failure with the hope that Novotny would fill the void once McClure is dismissed. Arguing against the rumor, one must note McClure's libelous comment implying Ledonne is a terrorist. It is hard to imagine she was coached to say this. It's asking for a lawsuit. More likely she is just ignorant of the law and willing to say anything to make Ledonne look bad, all in hopes of saving face.
November 8, 2015 at 9:27am Now playing in the Valley Courier and at the Sky Hi 6: The Last Witch Hunter, starring Beverly McClure and Danny Ledonne.
November 5, 2015 at 6:39am An open communique to ASU Board of Trustees: If you did not attend the recent ASU Faculty Senate meeting, then you must at least read the minutes. You must take action now, before all of this gets out of hand. Needless to say, the writing is on the wall!
October 29, 2015 at 3:15pm For the "messenger" (ASU Chief of Police) to write such an email and jump into the fray reflects poorly on his professional conduct and provides an insight into ASU administration's current desperation and unprofessional actions. It seems that the administration is making mistakes upon mistakes. One of the most serious and damaging implication indicated in the email is the ludicrous connection between Columbine, the video game, Mr. Ledonne, and campus safety. All of us who have known Danny for a long time, in any capacity, and who are residents of this community are outraged that such an incriminating statement pertaining to a prominent citizen has been made with the backing of the ASU President.
October 29, 2015 at 8:33am On 10/28/2015, the ASU Chief of Police, Paul Grohowski, issued an "open letter" to the campus. A quick read is enough to see that this letter had nothing to do with making the campus safer. It was all about justifying the ban against Danny Ledonne in an attempt to save face for the President. It's nice that the Chief is a team player and willing to take the hit for recent poor decisions. However, it is unfortunate that whoever was involved with writing this open letter (in addition to the Chief) felt it would be helpful to disparage Danny. The first "Fact" states that "Mr. Ledonne created a post-Columbine video game that recreates the horror of the Columbine HS shooting massacre." If this were just about disparaging Mr. Ledonne with this insinuation that he might go postal, I wouldn't honor that insinuation by responding. However, the Chief's letter is dangerous in so many ways. The threat to freedom of speech and academic freedom at ASU is obvious, but the Chief's response is dangerously misguided - putting students and employees at GREATER risk - if the threat were real, which IT IS NOT. It would seem the Chief is horribly misinformed about best practices with regard to suspected school shooters. I think we can safely assume the FBI knows more about such threats. Reviewing their 52-page report, "The School Shooter," shows how misguided ASU's actions have been. For starters: "One response to the pressure for action may be an effort to identify the next shooter by developing a "profile" of the typical school shooter. This may sound like a reasonable preventive measure, but in practice, trying to draw up a catalogue or "checklist" of warning signs to detect a potential school shooter can be shortsighted, even dangerous. Such lists, publicized by the media, can end up unfairly labeling many nonviolent students as potentially dangerous or even lethal. In fact, a great many adolescents who will never commit violent acts will show some of the behaviors or personality traits included on the list." Yes, that's right "dangerous." Reading further, I'm guessing any rational person would judge Danny as Low-Risk (or no risk if you actually talked to him), based on the reports assessment guidelines. When it comes to the FBI's recommendations for intervention, ASU's actions can once again be construed as dangerous: "It is especially important that a school not deal with threats by simply kicking the problem out the door. Expelling or suspending a student for making a threat must not be a substitute for careful threat assessment and a considered, consistent policy of intervention. Disciplinary action alone, unaccompanied by any effort to evaluate the threat or the student's intent, may actually exacerbate the danger-- for example, if a student feels unfairly or arbitrarily treated and becomes even angrier and more bent on carrying out a violent act." "Kicking the problem out the door"? Sure, let's ban him from campus - even though he's not a real threat and this is against recommendations. And as an added bonus, this move will serve to isolate him from many positive social connections, while at the same time embarrass him. A "considered, consistent policy of intervention"? Let's hastily plagiarize a Persona Non Grata policy and implement it before it has even been approved. ASU's response has been anything but "considered." "Unfairly or arbitrarily treated"? Bingo! Speak up and President McClure is happy to slap you down. Let's have the Chief issue this open letter, which will further embarrass or humiliate Mr. Ledonne. That's certainly a best practice when dealing with someone you are accusing of being a potential threat. Humiliating someone always makes them less violent - sure! Returning to my initial point about safety, yesterday's letter had nothing to do with safety. It was just another poor decision that would "exacerbate the danger," IF THE DANGER WERE REAL. So, I hope all students, staff, faculty, and administration are feeling safer today, all thanks to the intelligent, rational actions of President McClure and Chief Grohowski. It would just be simpler and safer for Administration to admit they were wrong and DE-ESCALATE, rather than continue to double-down on bad decisions.
October 28, 2015 at 10:31pm I can't believe a public institution would actually release a statement to the media calling a specific person a "disgruntled, unsuccessful job applicant". It almost feels like Adams State is asking to be shut down due to its gross incompetence. And to then read a childish rant from the chief of police that was sent to ALL staff?
October 27, 2015 at 1:43pm ASU is in need of seasoned, experienced, and mature leadership. The institution needs a leader who understands the type of counsel that is given and who is giving it and what are their real motives. A leader who does not understand this basic attribute of an astute university president, will not and cannot be successful in governing. Unfortunately actions and decisions of the current ASU President do not reflect this. Naturally, it is difficult for someone who was supervising about FOUR employees in their previous longtime position and is now responsible for an entire state university!
October 26, 2015 at 8:37pm I believe the title "President McClure is Misinformed..." is quite accurate. I have heard or read at least five statements that were just plain incorrect. Most of these statements were about past situations at ASU (supervisors reviewed and approved CUPA-based salary decisions, come on?) or recent changes (all the data available at WatchingAdams came from ASU's website and is available there - false!), so it is easy to imagine how she may have been misinformed by the same administrators who routinely misinform the campus and obfuscate facts to hide their incompetencies or personal agendas. If she is listening to Dr. Novotny and Tracy Rogers without taking what they say with a large grain of salt, then it is no wonder she is misinformed. It is a real shame if Dr. McClure is making incorrect statements due to these circumstances, and just plain unethical if she is doing it knowingly. In either case, the result is the same -- a blow to her credibility. She made a good impression when she interviewed and at other times when she has spoken on campus, leading many of us to be hopeful. That hope hasn't died, but it certainly has been tarnished as her credibility continues to drop. Dr. McClure is happy to give advice to others. Here is some for her: "Beverly, don't believe everything from those who seek to whisper in the Queen's ear." They just might be motivated to misinform.
October 26, 2015 at 7:09pm Lots of talk here about "due process." Given ASU Administration's history of disregarding due process, Dr. McClure's actions fit right in. Perhaps, she has found a good fit at ASU.
October 26, 2015 at 6:54pm Regarding the "'Negativity' is Negative" commentary, Dr. McClure's language reveals something about her way of thinking. Using words like "toxic" to describe individuals is more than just disparaging; it is a label that relegates them to an inconsequential status, justifying her dismissal of their concerns. Similarly, characterizing Human Resources as "victims" not so subtly implies that those who complain or question are "persecutors," also worthy of dismissal. This type of black-and-white thinking is not what we need in any leader. An additional concern is the speed with which she is willing to judge others as "toxic." Do these rapid all-encompassing judgments come from her personal experience, or is she just following what other administrators tell her? I am sure Dr. McClure is under great pressure in her new position; therefore, I hope she is capable of less emotional, more rational thinking as ASU moves forward. In particular, I hope she comes to realize that much of the "negativity" has a long history and that there is much to be learned from "complainers."