Kaine's take: BOV secrecy a 'huge mistake'
Former governor Tim Kaine, the man who appointed half of the Board of Visitors, including embattled Rector Helen Dragas, weighed in on the forced resignation of UVA President Teresa Sullivan at a meeting with Charlottesville women June 19.
"The board made a very, very serious mistake in making this decision without meeting," he said. "It's been very painful watching this."
Kaine, now running for the U.S. Senate, recalled that in his last month as governor, he heard the news that Teresa Sulllivan had been chosen president of the University of Virginia.
"I was very proud of the board I put in place," he said. And in the two years since, "I have not heard one negative word about Teresa Sullivan," he notes.
"Like you," he told the women assembled at the roundtable meeting held at C'ville Coffee, "I was stunned."
Kaine said he was taking the Board of Visitors at its word about the reasons for pushing Sullivan out.
"Philosophical differences are legitimate," said Kaine, though he voiced disagreement with the method.
"It's not an issue to be dealt with in secret," says Kaine. "That should be discussed in public." Not doing so, he added, "was a fundamental error."
One of the participants at the forum asked Kaine what he would do with this Board, and he answered with a slight dodge, going back two years ago to recall that many of the folks who fired were the folks who hired: "There was an enormous pride in many of the same people that Teresa Sullivan was president."This story is a part of the The ousting of a president special.