For the last three years, Thomas A. Hamilton has increasingly become a minority of one on the seven-member Board of Trustees of St. Clair County Community College, regularly challenging policies adopted by the two-year institution's president and questioning whether the board is fulfilling its obligations to oversee and assess her performance.
Many college presidents consider reporters a necessary nuisance in a democracy. Auburn University's interim president, Ed Richardson, isn't so sure about the necessary part.
He sent a memo to Auburn faculty members and administrators last week telling them that he will no longer speak with Jack Stripling, who covers higher education for the local newspaper, The Opelika-Auburn News.
When Florida overhauled its higher education system to shift power from the State Board of Regents to boards of trustees at individual campuses in 2003, it invalidated the employment contract between the regents and the statewide union that represented 10,000 professors, throwing academic labor relations into disarray.