Tone Deaf, Myopic (and Self-Serving) Leadership


Writing for the Hartford Courant, Jacqueline Rabe Thomas reports “In Tough Times, UConn Hands Out Raises to Top Staff”:

“In a fiscally challenging year in which few non-union managers received pay increases—at UConn or elsewhere in state government—President Susan Herbst is sticking by promises she made in 2013 and 2014 to give multiyear increases to four senior staff.

“The university considers the raises contractual commitments.

“In December 2014—one month after the governor cut state funding for UConn by $3.7 million and warned more cuts would come before the fiscal year ended—Herbst gave three of her most senior staff members hefty pay increases over two or three fiscal years.

“Those increases went to the university’s general counsel, chief architect and Herbst’s deputy chief of staff. In 2013, she awarded her chief of staff increases and bonuses over the next three fiscal years.

“Separately, Herbst and athletic department staff also received large increases dictated by their multi-year contracts. Herbst received a $29,500 pay raise in January, a $125,000 bonus in May and will receive another $40,000 bonus this summer. . . .

“With the state facing a deficit of $1.3 billion in the fiscal year that begins July 2017, UConn is not planning any further increases, UConn spokeswoman Stephanie Reitz said.

“’The university and the board have indicated they intend to freeze non-union pay in 2017. ‘”


Thomas’ complete article is available at:


Susan Herbst, President, UConn

Susan Herbst

2 thoughts on “Tone Deaf, Myopic (and Self-Serving) Leadership

  1. See also an excellent op-ed by Sarah Darrer Littman, a writer and AAUP member, on CT News Junkie here:

    She writes: “at a time of massive state budget deficits and statewide layoffs, President Herbst and the Board of Trustees have chosen — because let’s be clear, it’s a choice — to go forward with massive pay increases to a few non-union administrators on the basis that ‘everyone else is doing it.’ One can’t help but think of that oft-heard parental reprimand, ‘If all your friends were jumping off a cliff, would you do that, too?'”


    “Apparently in the eyes of our governor, ‘the best and the brightest’ refers only to administrators, not people who actually teach the students. Sadly, anti-intellectualism seems to have become a bipartisan affair, too.”

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