Board of Regents can’t decide on next chair

Meeting ends after six rounds of voting fail to produce a majority choice

The Board of Regents failed to elect a new chair June 17 at CU Boulder, the second such stalemate since 2013.

The nine board members completed six rounds of secret-ballot voting – none resulting in a majority choice – before current Chair Kyle Hybl adjourned the meeting. The vote was the final agenda item on the board’s two-day meeting, which was held in the University Memorial Center.

The final round of voting gave Hybl four votes; current Vice Chair Irene Griego also received four votes, while Glen Gallegos received one vote. In earlier rounds of voting, Hybl tallied three votes; Gallegos, two.

Hybl and Gallegos are Republicans, who hold a 5-4 majority on the board, while Griego is a Democrat.

After the first failed vote, former Chair Michael Carrigan, who emerged as the victor in a vote at a special meeting that followed 2013’s failed 14 rounds of voting, moved to have the board suspend its requirement of a majority rule. With only a plurality of votes, Griego presumably would have emerged as the chair, based on the first vote. But the motion by Carrigan, a Democrat, failed on a 5-4 party line vote.

Hybl and Griego will remain in their current leadership roles until the board attempts another vote, which could happen at its July retreat or sooner if the board chooses to convene a special meeting.

In other business at the June 16-17 meeting in the University Memorial Center at CU Boulder:

  • During the Regents Intercollegiate Athletic Committee meeting, CU Boulder Athletic Director Rick George reported on progress in new facility construction and student-athlete academic achievement. He called the past year one of the department’s best in terms of academics, with student athletes registering a 2.908 GPA in the spring semester and an 86 percent graduation success rate. In competition, the winning percentage against Division I competition was 69.3 percent. The new indoor practice facility adjacent to Folsom Field will be ready for use in the fall, George said. The Board of Regents approved a three-year extension of George’s contract, now running through June 2021.
  • The board voted to approve three new bachelor’s degrees at CU Boulder, in elementary education; leadership and community engagement; and atmospheric and oceanic sciences.
  • During public comment, several graduate students from CU Boulder expressed dissatisfaction with their compensation, saying that the current average salary of $17,909 is woefully below a “self-sufficiency wage.” In Boulder, an MIT calculator places that figure at roughly $29,000. CU Boulder Chancellor Phil DiStefano said the new average salary for graduate students will rise to $19,073 in the coming year, an increase of 6 percent.
  • The board reappointed Peter F. Steinhauer and John W. Bliss to the Board of Directors of the Coleman Colorado Foundation.
  • The board appointed Richard Monfort to the University of Colorado Health Board of Directors.
  • The board approved the name change for the CU Denver Department of Planning and Design to the Department of Urban and Regional Planning in the College of Architecture and Planning.
  • The board approved the University of Colorado Colorado Springs Cyber Security Center Program Plan and planned use of $7.9 million in state funding, which becomes available July 1.

The Board of Regents will meet next July 13-15 for its annual retreat at Silverthorne.

Here’s the CU Boulder meeting roundup