An Update from Baylor Board Chair Ron Murff

November 15, 2016
The Baylor University Board of Regents has committed itself to the highest standards in the governance of the University and in support of the Baylor mission. We have heard the concerns of our community and pledge to listen and respond to calls for increased transparency and accountability.

In particular, we acknowledge the Baylor Family’s desire to be better informed about our decisions and deliberations. Last week, a group of former Regents, Baylor alums, donors and friends of the University met in Waco to share their thoughts about improvements to the University’s governance. We welcome and embrace their recommendations for more transparent leadership.

While the Board has taken several important steps in recent months to focus on adopting best practices in governance, we have a lot more to do. As part of our continuous review of Board governance, two leading experts joined Regents during a daylong retreat at our July 2016 meeting. Dr. Cathy Trower and Ray Cotton challenged the Regents to identify and adopt meaningful changes in governance that will better position the Board to support the University in achieving its mission well into the future.

Our Governance and Compensation Committee worked throughout the summer and early fall to address areas of improvement. An update memo sent by the committee chair to the Sexual Assault Task Force project manager in early October outlined these improvements and areas of ongoing review. That memo has been posted on the website baylor.edu/thefacts.

On November 9, the Board announced a special Governance Review Task Force. The formation of this Task Force grew out of the work of the Board Governance committee. The Task Force will partner with the Committee to recommend substantive changes to Board practices and procedures. We are committed to taking immediate action to increase transparency such as posting agendas and minutes of our quarterly meetings. There will be more announcements in the near future toward achieving this goal.

The Board of Regents is comprised of business leaders, pastors, lawyers, entrepreneurs and others. The vast majority of our Regents are alumni and all share a love for Baylor University. We consider our voluntary service a way of giving back and supporting this great institution. We work to do what is right for Baylor’s future and it is in this spirit that we are taking steps toward greater transparency and accountability. We look forward to working alongside those who share our love for and commitment to the future of Baylor University.
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