LINCOLN UNIVERSITY, PA — State Senator Andy Dinniman said that he believes the Lincoln University Board of Trustees acted contrary to state statute in not seating several gubernatorial and legislative appointees prior to the July 10 meeting and vote that ended the employment of President Brenda Allen.
Board leadership has stated that it reserves the right to vet any state appointees before seating them. However, Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro filed a lawsuit arguing that the board violated notice and agenda requirements by refusing to allow participation by those appointees.
Dinniman, who serves as minority chair of the Senate Education Committee and as a Senate appointee to the Lincoln board, said he is drafting legislation to strengthen and clarify laws related to state-related university board appointments and appointees.
“We must make it abundantly clear that no state-related university, including Lincoln, has the right to delay or refuse to seat a state appointment to its board,” he said.
Dinniman further noted that the governor and legislature reserve the right to appoint members to these university boards because the institutions receive public funds. In the case of Lincoln University, state funding accounts for more than 25 percent of its budget.
In response to a lawsuit from Allen, Chester County Common Pleas Judge William Mahon recently ordered that she be reinstated as Lincoln University President. Mahon also ruled that the Lincoln University Board of Trustees meet again on August 6 to discuss and vote on Allen’s potential contract renewal with the new appointees seated.
Lincoln University is in Senator Dinniman’s district. Dinniman said he remains a strong supporter of Allen and believes it is in the university’s interest to renew her contract.
“I am hopeful that with all the Commonwealth trustees finally being able to vote, we can renew Dr. Allen’s contract and continue her outstanding leadership of Lincoln University,” he said.
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