Sunday, February 1, 2015

The Board Member Who Ate Milwaukee...

Whenever the writing muse is silent I can depend on the powers that be at the Honest Weight Food Corpop to awake me from my writing slumbers. So I was talking to a Corpop member recently who defended the decision of members of the Board to do an end around on one of the elected members of the Board and deny him a role in the evaluation of the Corpop's Leadership Team. This member is also on the GRC, one of the governing committees that runs the Corpop, so I think we can take this as close to an official version of what happened. The argument this member made goes like this: having a staff member as part of the evaluation team was a conflict of interest making it necessary for the Board to act in the way that it did because the staff member under suspicion refused to recuse himself.

The problems with this argument, it seems to me, are several. First, those who take this position haven't offered any concrete case or cases in which a staff Board member had a conflict of interest when evaluating the LT. What is clear is that the staff member under suspicion has never and will never, to my knowledge, be evaluated by any member of the LT. So where does the conflict of interest come in? Second, they haven't explained why the same staff Board member who was involved in the evaluation of the LT several years ago and not one of the powers that be seemed to object to this at the time. What changed in the intervening years? Third, they haven't provided any evidence of a written code of ethics that mandates that staff Board members recuse themselves from LT evaluation committees. This leads one to wonder whether certain members of the Board make the rules up as they go along and have no problem changing them whenever it suits the powers that be's purposes.

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