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Trustees

From left, OU officials during a media availability at Walter Hall in January 2019: Deborah Shaffer, vice president for finance and administration and treasurer for the Board of Trustees; President Duane Nellis; OU Trustee Chair David Scholl; and former Provost and Executive Vice President Chaden Djalali.

The Ohio University Board of Trustees, tasked with determining whether Yusuf Kalyango is able to keep his tenure, pledged to review all evidence within the years-long case, including the Faculty Senate committee report that recommended upholding the professor’s tenure and both Title IX investigations that found he sexually harassed two students.

The decision by the university comes after Faculty Senate passed a resolution last week asking the Board of Trustees to withdraw the committee report that recommended Kalyango, a journalism professor, keep his tenure, saying it was improperly conceived and violated university policy.

“We acknowledge and deeply appreciate the engagement of the Faculty Senate with regard to the resolution passed (last week). In order to fully comply with our obligations as final arbiter of this matter, we believe it necessary and appropriate to review the full record, including the report of the Faculty Senate committee, the hearing transcript, the findings of the Office of Equity and Civil Rights Compliance, the recommendations of the University Professional Ethics Committees, and other relevant documents,” the Board of Trustees said Tuesday night in a statement.

“To that end, we have requested that President Nellis transmit the full record to the trustees for review and consideration. We are mindful of the gravity of this matter to all parties involved and the greater university community, and dedicate ourselves to a just resolution.”

According to the faculty handbook, the Board of Trustees are only charged with reviewing the final Faculty Senate document sent by Nellis when determining tenure revocation of a faculty member, but there is no language that prevents other evidence from being placed into consideration. The Board is expected to determine to future of Kalyango’s tenure in “the near future,” a university spokesperson previously said.

Both Office for Equity and Civil Rights Compliance (Title IX) investigations outlined in great detail the substation of allegations from two former students, Tess Herman and Lindsay Boyle, that Kalyango sexually harassed them.

A subsequent University Professional Ethics Committees (UPEC) report recommended to former Provost and Executive Vice President Chaden Djalali that Kalyango lose his tenure, affirming the Title IX investigation into Herman’s case. A second UPEC report upheld the investigation into Boyle’s case.

Djalali issued a letter calling for the university to detenure Kalyango.

Kalyango then appealed tenure revocation, leading to the specially convened Faculty Senate committee that was charged in December with reviewing both women’s cases through evidence and testimonies from Boyle, Herman and faculty members.

The committee recommended that Kalyango shouldn’t lose tenure and immediately be reinstated as a full professor after not being ensured adequate due process by the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism and the Scripps College of Communication. It also called into question the merits of both Title IX investigations.

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