Following an announcement last month that CSU President Larry Penley’s No. 2, Executive Vice-President John Lincoln, has retired, Lincoln will receive nearly $70,000 in salary and benefits, according to his separation agreement.
Lincoln’s departure comes at a time when funding shifts under Penley’s administration have funneled tens of millions of dollars from the university’s general fund — primarily tuition dollars — into administration, while funding for academia rises at a significantly slower rate, according to university budget reports and CSU Provost Tony Frank.
The funding shifts and increased budgets and salaries for top-level administration, including Lincoln, reported in the Collegian prompted student government leaders to form an investigative committee that plans to present their findings to state legislators who have called for more transparency in the way CSU spends money.
As CSU faces what the contract deems “uncertain state support and intense competition for human and financial capital,” Lincoln will act as an independent contractor, focusing on strengthening public affairs and communications and “aggressively pursuing and cultivating alternative sources of revenue,” according to his contract. CSU can pay him up to $10,000 a month for services on a contractual basis.
“I am thankful (Lincoln) has agreed to advise public affairs operations of the university on a contractual basis,” Penley said in an e-mail announcing Lincoln’s resignation to campus leaders last month.
After working with Penley during his tenure at Arizona State University, Lincoln was hired by Penley in 2004 to set up an organizational structure for CSU’s communication department.
Lincoln provided direct oversight of all executive operations until he retired. His “significant expertise and a well-documented track record of success” in areas such as student recruitment, public affairs management and higher education marketing serve as basis for his remaining with the university, the contract reads.
“We are certainly very glad that he will remain with (CSU),” said Brad Bohlander, CSU’s head spokesperson.
News Editor Elyse Jarvis can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.