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April 19, 2024

Lewis & Clark College cancels President’s contract, president starts investigation of board chairman –

By John Kraft & Kirk Allen

On May 10, 2019


In a stunning rebuke of the “lame-duck” Lewis and Clark Community College’s Board of Trustees attempt at extending President Dale Chapman’s contract by three years, the new Board of Trustees, at its first meeting, declared all contracts approved at the previous meeting invalid and rescinded them.

Three new trustees were elected in the April 2019 election.

During the April 9, 2019 Board of Trustees meeting, the lame-duck board approved certain contract extensions, among those, were contracts to the President and the President’s wife.

At the first meeting of the new Board, held April 30, 2019, the Board approved agenda items as follows:

  • Declare as invalid of all administrative contracts voted on at the April 9, 2019, meeting
  • Rescission of all administrative contracts voted on at the April 9, 2019, regular meeting

This action was taken because the new board believed the previous board violated the Public Community College Act, Section 3-65, by not giving proper public notice of the pending contracts or otherwise making them available to the public prior to approving them:

Sec. 3-65. Employment contract limitations.(b)The following apply to any employment contract entered into with an employee of the community college district:(4) Public notice, in a form as determined by the State Board, must be given of an employment contract entered into, amended, renewed, or extended and must include a complete description of the action to be taken, as well the contract itself, including all addendums or any other documents that change an initial contract.

Prior to the vote, the new Board also alleged the previous agenda violated the Open Meetings Act by not giving enough information so the public could be aware that contracts for specific people were being voted on.

Now that the Board nullified the contract, and there were complaints about alleged comments the board chairman made on his personal Facebook page, College President Chapman has decided the college would investigate the alleged comments. Note there was no mention of any such investigation prior to the rescinding of the contracts, which raises the question as to the real motive behind the investigation.

CAIR-MO has called for his resignation.

Video of the April 30, 2019 meeting:

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