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Your Guide To The Board Of Trustees Alumni Election

The race for the Board of Trustees’ three open alumni seats is on as voting is officially open. There are four vying for the three spots — incumbents Ted Brown, Barbara Doran, and Bill Oldsey are up against Dan Cocco, who graduated almost three decades after the three incumbents.

The three incumbent trustees hold the Penn Staters for Responsible Stewardship (PS4RS) endorsement, but Cocco picked up his own key endorsement in Adam Taliaferro yesterday. PS4RS, an organization which formed in 2011 after the firing of Joe Paterno and works to control the nine alumni-elected trustee positions, has dominated the recent elections. Here’s a little about each candidate:

Ted Brown ’68

Ted Brown

Brown is seeking re-election and a second term on the Board. A 1968 graduate of Penn State, Brown deals primarily with crisis management and serves as the vice chair of the BoT’s committee on audit and risk. Though Brown is running on 11 goals, his platform can be boiled down to three main points: honoring Joe Paterno, refuting the Freeh Report, and keeping tuition from increasing. Brown also wants to work on crisis management and transparency within the Board. If you’re looking for the trustee that will fight to build a shrine replica of Paterno’s office, then Brown is your guy.

Dan Cocco ’08


Cocco served as THON’s overall in 2008 and is looking for his first opportunity to serve on the Board and bring a “new independent alumni voice.” Cocco’s platform includes six goals that focus on Penn State and the well-being or improvement of faculty, students, and alumni, with things like “changing lives through groundbreaking research” and “highlight accomplishments of Penn State and attract top talent.” Cocco ran previously but was defeated by PS4RS-endorsed candidates. He will try to come out with a seat this year.

Barbara Doran ’75


Doran was first elected in 2013 and is seeking her second term on the Board, where she currently sits on the committee on governance and long-range planning. While Doran wants “accountability and transparency” from in the Board, she is also running on a plan to strengthen Penn State’s academic standards and keep the cost of attending low with a focus on tuition and room and board rates.

Bill Oldsey ’76


Oldsey was also elected for the first time in 2013 and currently serves on both the BoT’s committee on legal and compliance and committee on finance, business, and capital planning. Oldsey’s focuses for re-election include seeking access to the Freeh documents like his fellow incumbent trustees, but also controlling administrative costs to keep tuition down and proving the worth of a Penn State degree for all academic paths and majors.


All alumni are eligible to vote in the election (sorry undergrads). Those who have voted in previous alumni trustees elections should have or will be sent a ballot automatically. If you’re new to the BoT alumni elections however, you can fill out a request for a ballot herewhich point your request will be analyzed and, if found eligible, a ballot will be sent within 24 hours. Alumni who have requested and been sent a ballot must submit it by Thursday, May 5 at 9 a.m.

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About the Author

Lexi Shimkonis

Lexi is an editor-turned-staff writer who can often be found at either Irving's or the Phyrst (with the chances she'll have her backpack being the same). Lexi is a senior hailing from Spring City, PA (kind of) and studying Civil Engineering. Please email questions and/or pleas for an Instagram caption to [email protected], or for a more intimate bond, follow her on Twitter @lexshimko.


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