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An Open Letter to the FSU Community from the Board of Trustees (Sept. 20, 2018)

megaphone Official PDF of Open Letter from the Board of Trustees

Dear Ferris State University community,

The Ferris State University Board of Trustees takes great pride in the University and the quality education it provides to thousands of students each year We believe that Ferris’ success as an institution has been made possible through the combined, collaborative efforts of our University’s excellent faculty, its dedicated staff, and the strong, stable leadership provided by President Eisler and his executive team.

The Board is, therefore, deeply disappointed by the recent lack of progress in the collective bargaining negotiations between the University and the Ferris Faculty Association. We firmly believe that a contract agreement negotiated at the bargaining table is the best way of resolving the remaining disputed issues. A state mediator was appointed in July to help the process move forward. We encourage both bargaining teams to work collaboratively with the state mediator, and at the table, to reach agreement.

As this process continues, we want to convey to the University community the strong support of the entire Board of Trustees (both individually and collectively) for President Eisler. We greatly appreciate the outstanding leadership he has consistently provided to the University during his 15 years of service here, and look forward to that continuing into the future. We believe that stability in the University’s leadership team provides significant benefits to Ferris. As such, we have worked very hard over the years to retain President Eisler at Ferris State University, and to provide him with a competitive compensation package.

As trustees we carefully review President Eisler’s performance each year. We also examine the market factors which must be taken into consideration when setting his compensation for the coming year. We carefully study the compensation packages afforded other University presidents at peer group institutions. Based on this, the Board believes that President Eisler is being fairly compensated for the fine job he has done, and continues to do for the University.

We do not believe that the recent criticisms of President Eisler, based on out of context mischaracterizations regarding his compensation, are at all justified. In fact, we believe that personal attacks and confrontations such as these serve only to impede the goal of reaching a negotiated collective bargaining agreement. Instead, we would like to see both bargaining teams promptly resume negotiating at the table, and work diligently until a mutually beneficial contract is agreed.

As a Board, we remain firmly committed to Ferris State University, its students, its faculty, the leadership of President Eisler and his team, and above all, to serving the best interests of Ferris by encouraging both parties to return to the table now, and bargain their way to a negotiated agreement.

Paul E. Boyer, chair