IBJ on the D'Amico/Ivy Tech story

Dateline: Wed 16 May 2007

The Indianapolis Business Journal is using the Freedom of Information Act to get to the bottom of the Ivy Tech board's decision to reject Carol D'Amico as its new leader. Instead the board picked Anderson businessman Thomas Snyder in March. Now plenty of people want to know what went on behind closed doors, since D'Amico, a talented longtime career educator, was the school's vice president and was supposedly a shoe-in for the presidency.

The aggressive biz weekly has filed an FOI request for all the papers leading up to D'Amico's May 6 resignation, including all letters and correspondence between the attorneys (Ice Miller for Ivy Tech) and other relevant documents. Yes, this would include outgoing prez Gerald Lamkin's statement that "no woman will lead Ivy Tech," and a comment from a board member who asked questions about Mrs. D'Amico's husband's disability. (He has Parkinson's, which apparently led to speculation in some quarters that he wasn't up to assisting his wife in a leadership capacity).

Meanwhile at the state's huge community college system, Lamkin is reportedly not happy that the new leader-in-waiting is hanging around so much. Lamkin will leave June 30, but it's a bit overdue: he has been on that campus since 1967, so whatever faults Ivy Tech has -- those include higher tuition than many other community college networks, a good old boy buddy system for political cronies and a dismal graduation rate --- can all be laid at his feet.

If the IBJ is successful in its request, some of the tangled web Lamkin has woven will be exposed. Good, because nothing should be more important to Indiana than education. What has gone down at Ivy Tech is a disgrace.

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