How former U president Bruininks replied to an invitation to talk

Just letting you know what former University of Minnesota President Bob Bruininks told Jayne Solinger, producer for MPR’s All Things Considered, when she invited him to come onto the show.

She wanted him to talk about the controversial separation/transition packages he granted 10 top administrators when they left their jobs.

Here’s his reply:


From: Robert Bruininks []

Sent: Wednesday, March 07, 2012 2:15 PM

To: Solinger, Jayne

Subject: Re: Possible interview?

Dear Jayne,

I am sorry, but I have other commitments today that would make it impossible to do the interview. I would suggest that you contact Ray Cotton (202-434-7322), who is considered an expert in this area and could speak about why such policies are needed and desirable in higher education. I believe he would be willing to talk with you.

If you do proceed with a story today, you may include the following statement from me:

“Although there has been some conflation in the media of existing and transition compensation for departing administrators, without question the dollar amounts are still large. It should be noted that we faced the departure of an unprecedented number of senior executives who together had contributed more than 150 years of outstanding service – and many of whom continue to do important work on behalf of the University and the state. These outstanding leaders succeeded in advancing the University’s academic profile, productivity, and reputation during a particularly challenging period. I am comfortable that I acted in the best interests of the institution and in conformance with existing University policies, which provide presidential discretion on these matters.”


Bob Bruininks