The Board of Regents say they will hold U-I president Sally Mason accountable for the poor handling of the alleged sexual assault on campus by two former football players, but also expressed confidence in her for the future. The board voted today to maintain Mason’s $450,000 base salary, but did agree to up Mason’s potential for performance bonuses from 50 to $80,000.
Regents president David Miles says Mason took over the university at a tough time, yet led the school to record fall enrollment, record research grants and private giving. He says Mason’s leadership during the June flooding was “extraordinary.”
“Under her leadership, our preparations for the flood were aggressive, and she did not simply organize those preparations, she worked on the front lines helping to fill and place sandbags to protect our buildings,” Miles says. Miles says Mason worked effectively with state, federal and local officials to bring order to the chaos in the midst of the major disaster. Miles says while Mason has show very good leadership since coming to the school, this case was a negative.
“The University failed in its handling of the sexual assault, and for that president Mason bares responsibility, the board has been clear with her on this.” Miles says, “yet we also recognize that the event itself occurred just a few weeks following her arrival on our campus. She inherited the flawed policies and procedures in place at the time, she relied upon members of her executive team, some of whom in retrospect did not serve her well in this matter.”
Miles says Mason did what she could to handle the assault despite the poor procedures in use. He says Mason stay informed and reached out to the alleged victims mother and made the right calls to make sure the matter was handled expeditiously. Miles says Mason has now committed to making changes to bring confidence back to the university. Miles says the decision to not give Mason a raise was based on the overall mishandling of the sexual assault case.
Miles says: “As president she is responsible for the good and the bad, and thus our approach. We urge the public to take from this approach a message of accountability for results, it is not meant to convey dissatisfaction or a limited future for this president. But rather our high expectations for her and what we continue to view as great promise for the University of Iowa under her leadership. In sum, we president Mason to be a good and able president.”
Miles says he will meet with Mason and set the goals she must reach to be eligible to receive the $80,000 in incentive pay.