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USF Poly board member quits, saying USF is scuttling the “Poly model”
Posted Feb 2, 2012 by Lindsay Peterson
Updated Feb 2, 2012 at 10:05 PM
The Poly drama continues.
One of the biggest cheerleaders for USF Polytechnic’s independence, Mark Kaylor, has resigned from the Poly governing board with a flourish.
Kaylor, a lawyer for another independence advocate, state Sen. JD Alexander, sent a letter to USF President Judy Genshaft last week saying there was a “systemic problem” with the governance of the USF system.
“While it may not be clear to many, it is very clear to me that the true underlying intentions of USF Tampa is to scuttle the polytechnic model and otherwise thwart any opportunity to meet the benchmarks set forth by the Board of Governors when it granted status for a 12th university,” he wrote.
The letter was dated Jan. 27, just four days after Kaylor commended Genshaft and USF at a Poly campus board meeting. Genshaft and USF trustee Brian Lamb met with the campus board to update members on the independence effort.
“I’m glad to see board members from Tampa engaged,” Kaylor said to them.
But the next day the new Poly chief, David Touchton, fired five top administrators in a reorganization that he said would save the campus $1 million. They included the people who ran the international recruiting programs.
That set Kaylor off, it seems.
In addition to Genshaft, he wrote Morteza “Mori” Hosseini, a member of the state university Board of Governors who leads a board committee monitoring the independence moves.
He said Hosseini must “act swiftly to prevent further dismantling of the polytechnic/business plan model.”
Kaylor was part of a community group, led by Alexander, who began pushing in July for Poly to separate from USF.
In a long, emotional debate in November, the state university Board of Governors struck something of a compromise, voting to give Poly its independence once it met several benchmarks showing it could stand alone.
The following month, Genshaft dismissed then-Poly Chancellor Marshall Goodman, whom Kaylor had supported.
Hosseini chided Genshaft for her seemingly sudden decision to replace Goodman with Touchton, who had opposed the local independence effort. Genshaft vowed to keep board members in the loop in the future and in meetings since then, Hosseini has praised Genshaft and USF trustees for their cooperation.
She will decide who replaces Kaylor.