Remove Dave Baca from Linfield's Board of Trustees

Remove Dave Baca from Linfield's Board of Trustees

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Hannah Waterman
Hannah Waterman signed this petition

Many Linfield students were very distraught to hear about the Board of Trustees’ decision that allowed Mr. Dave Baca to continue leading; especially as Linfield moves forward into a new stage of its institutional development.

 

Mr. David Baca mishandled the sexual abuse accusations against former Trustee, David Jubb. We understand that the events in which the latest accusations occurred were not at a Linfield sponsored activity. However, Baca’s failure to immediately take action against Mr. Jubb who already had a history of sexual abuse (https://www.insidehighered.com/quicktakes/2020/05/26/linfield-accused-ignoring-abuse-complaint-against-trustee shows Mr. Baca’s inability to stand by the values of Linfield and shows an utter disrespect to the students and the institution that he is supposed to protect. In a recent statement send by Allison Xavier it is stated that Baca has the “character, the passion and the leadership to lead Linfield University to a brighter future”. We, as the student body, fail to see how his lack of moral action demonstrates the supposed character and leadership that is expected of him, especially in his role as the leader of Linfield’s governing body.

 

We understand that the Board of Trustees has the purpose of protecting our institution and reflecting its values. The Linfield faculty, which is comprised of professionals at the top of every field of academia, rejected Baca’s leadership (https://www.oregonlive.com/crime/2020/05/linfield-college-faculty-issue-vote-of-no-confidence-in-board-chair-over-handling-of-sex-abuse-complaints.html Considering this action, we as the student body believe it is not possible to maintain trust in the Board of Trustees. It demonstrates to the student body, that the Board of Trustees are willing to compromise student safety and ignore the considerations of the faculty.

 

One powerful part of Linfield that makes it distinctive, is its focus on inclusivity. As the country faces a historical reckoning of what attitudes, ideas, and values we have, Linfield takes a stance by allowing Mr. Baca to continue to lead without the considerations of the Linfield staff or student body. In return, this stance clearly states to all Linfield students, especially our female identifying students: we hear you and we do not value your voice or your suffering. Mr. Baca must step down as the community of Linfield and our country move forward we need to start acting upon, demonstrating, and upholding the values of solidarity and inclusivity that the Linfield University Board of Trustees represent.