Continuing a saga that started in late March, Sul Ross State University Foundation board members recently resigned, and were quickly replaced.
University President Pete Gallego’s Chief of Staff Mike Pacheco told the Avalanche the foundation would carry on as it had, but with a new board of directors.
“The money will continue to be spent the way the donors wanted,” said Pacheco.
He noted that over several months, the university had asked the foundation to do “several things that were within their contract,” but noted the board refused. He pointed out there was a termination clause in their agreement, and the university exercised that option.
He stressed that large sums were given to the foundation with certain contracts, and the money would be used for those purposes.
“I’m confused about what’s going around town about us taking the money, and that’s not possible in some of the cases,” said Pacheco.
The new board members include Rick Stephens, Carla McFarland, and Beto Hinojosa.
Pacheco thought additional members would be added, but noted the board was its own entity, and he didn’t know where they were in the process.
Said Pacheco, “The board knows they have a lot of work to do. They met last week and assigned each other with different tasks. They’re going to give each other some time, get together in the near future, and decide how best to move forward.”
He stressed the number one initiative was to ensure substantial fundraising efforts to support the university.
“There are a lot of people out there who want to make sure there is a robust foundation arm. That’s important to President Gallego,” said Pacheco. “We’re trying to include as many people in the decision making process as possible. We need to do what we feel is best for the university as a whole, and the community.”
New board president Stephens later stressed the foundation was up and operating to support its primary mission, saying, “There’s a new board in place with decades of experience who is committed to excellence, transparency, and success in supporting one of the most important assets in Alpine, in addition to all campuses including those in the Rio Grande Valley.”
Those interested in supporting the university may contact Stephens at 714-262-5089.