Amidst a wave of big endorsements, Dr. Alice Pope has entered the race for one of the three alumni seats on the Penn State Board of Trustees. Pope, a three-time Penn State graduate and outspoken member of grassroots efforts to reform the Board, officially announced her candidacy last week.
Her stated platform is non-specific, promising to “honor the past, renew our pride, and lead for tomorrow” with a sentence or two after each. But it’s apparent that Joe Paterno is on the forefront of Pope’s mind.
“I will honor our past, renew our pride, and provide leadership for tomorrow,” said Dr.Pope. “As a university, we need to embrace – not ignore – our tradition of success with honor in academics and athletics. Sandusky’s prosecutor, in a televised interview, debunked the Freeh Report’s wild speculation about Joe Paterno. Now is the time for Penn State to acknowledge the immense contributions that Joe Paterno made to our great university.”
“We must get to the bottom of the Sandusky scandal and examine the origins of the problem as well as understand the outside forces which came to bear in the decision making processes…Only transparency and a thirst for truth will heal our wounds and ensure that children are out of harm’s way.”
That type of PS4RS-inspired pathos has already garnered endorsements from current alumni trustees Bill Oldsey, Barbara Doran, and Anthony Lubrano.
“Alice has worked tirelessly on my behalf with respect to legislative reform. She has my respect, admiration, and now my support. I look forward to working with her as my colleague on the BOT.”
“Alice is a gifted academician and educator who understands the higher education landscape. She has a keen sense for the challenges facing Penn State now and into the future. I have found her to be an excellent communicator who takes the time to carefully research and understand the important issues of sound governance. Alice is a true Penn Stater and someone I am proud to call both colleague and friend. She would make an exceptional Trustee and has my full support.”
“A natural leader, gifted with a discerning intellect and an engaging and open manner, Alice has spoken out publicly on matters of governance and leadership at Penn State from day one. Her writing and public speaking have the power that comes from a clarity of vision, purpose and insight, and she is indefatigable in the pursuit of truth. This, plus her academic background and expertise in governance and human psychology, would make her a welcome and important addition to the board.”
Pope, a longtime psychology professor including at St. John’s, has made her name writing op-eds about Penn State over the last year and a half to various newspapers across the state (they’re all listed on her website). This type of activism, support, and apparent focus on past transgressions sets her up nicely for a run at the coveted PS4RS endorsement.
The election is currently in its nomination stage — Pope and other potential candidates won’t officially appear on the ballot until they receive 50 or more nominations — which will last until February 25. Voting begins on April 10 (alumni need to request a ballot), and the three winners will be announced at the May 9 meeting.