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T. Beechy: John Eastman: CU Boulder should use reforms set up by Arts and Sciences faculty

The faculty of the University of Colorado Boulder recognize the egregious nature of the events of Jan. 6, 2021, at the U.S. Capitol and the deep embarrassment and regret already expressed by campus leadership over the hiring and subsequent actions of John Eastman during his time at Boulder.

The Colorado Ethics Institute has called for the university to ascertain, among other things, “what steps could or should be taken to avoid this type of situation in the future” (“Former CU professor’s emails called into question,” Daily Camera, May 10).

The executive committee of the Boulder Faculty Assembly suggests a concrete step that the campus should take.

It should enact the reforms already adopted by the faculty in the College of Arts and Sciences in April 2021 (

The recommendations would require that the faculty in the appropriate academic department approve any visiting scholar hired by an entity such as the Benson Center. (Eastman was selected by a search committee of the center, and hired to teach in political science on the approval of the department chair alone.)

The recommendations would also check the influence of community members from outside the university (who sometimes sit on search committees) by requiring a meeting without such members before the final vote.

The administration has thus far failed to recognize the authority of the faculty, granted by University of Colorado Regent law (Article 5.A.1.B), in its refusal to enforce the faculty’s recommendations regarding visiting faculty hiring.

The faculty urge the campus to take this step as a meaningful way to prevent damaging debacles in the future.

T. Beechy, chair

signed by the Executive Committee of the Boulder Faculty Assembly