He’s talking priorities, his turnaround of the U of M’s College of Liberal Arts, his experience. Trustee Dan McElroy mentions that Rosenstone has no experience with two-year colleges and tech schools. Rosenstone said he’s had experience dealing with other departments, their facilities, needs and faculty. Trustee James Van Houten questions Rosenstone’s executive experience, but Rosenstone said he’s had both official and unofficial leadership experience in Michigan and at the U, and has shown his abilities in hiring, budgets, planning, etc.
The board needs to assess whether the range of experiences are enough for me to be successful.
UPDATE: He’s gone on to push his financial experience, saying he has been “in the trenches” at the U of M, especially in the 2002 budget cuts. He’s talking about how engaged he has been in the legislative “sausage factory”:
I’ll be in the fray. You can bet on that.
He said he’s worked very closely with board members in previous positions — usually over specific projects — and has enjoyed good relations.
I tell the truth and welcome feedback. I don’t try to sneak through the board. … I’ll never run around you, I’ll always work with you. But I expect you to have my back.
He recalled standing firm on teaching loads at the U, because it wasn’t financially tenable:
With a decade of hindsight on that one, people have come to understand the reality that I anticipated. Although faculty would love to teach less and do other things, it was what we needed to do.
On student relations:
Leadership is a team sport – and students are part of the team.
He recalled moving the student-board office into his building so he could have better communication with student leaders, run into them on occasion and have a more casual relationship. He said he had monthly lunches with them. After two years of student arguments against a particular graduation requirement they found “made no sense,” he was persuaded to lobby for them.