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In Support of Parity, Democracy

In reading through the pages of the Dartmouth Parity website, what struck me most was the level of honesty and optimism. This stands in stark contrast to the website, and slate of candidates, who are opposing the democratic vote of alumni by fear-mongering and personal attacks.

The candidates running on the Independent, Dartmouth Parity slate speak about maintaining a campus with a diverse student body, shrinking class sizes back to optimal levels, a better faculty-student ratio, and retaining the kind of world class professors that Dartmouth has recently been losing.

There is also a larger, transcendent issue. No matter a student or alumnus/a’s perspective on class size, diversity, faculty, etc. Dartmouth Parity support their right to exercise their democratic voice. This election presents two very different choices for the future of the college. One slate, the independent, pro-parity slate supports the right of alumni to elect their Board of Trustees at our College.

Since the 1891 contract alumni have had the right to elect half of the Board, today 8 trustees, along with the 8 trustees who are appointed (in addition to 2 ex-officio members). Recently the Board, including all of the unelected members, moved to add spots for 8 new unelected trustees for which they were sued by Dartmouth alumni. Adding these new seats not only violates the 1891 contact in legal terms, it decreases the power of alumni from 50% influence to 33% influence in moral and practical terms. For this reason the plot to expand the Board in this deceptive way have become known as the €œBoard-packing scheme. € Whether we accept this intolerable act or fight for alumni democracy is the issue in the upcoming election.

The slate of candidates led by J. Michael Murphy ‘61, Bert Boles ‘80, and Paul Mirengoff ‘71 support parity on the Board and the democratic right of alumni to vote on the direction of Dartmouth College.


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