Top Philanthropist Questions Regent’s Silence on UT President

Kenneth Jastrow II, chairman of UT’s Capital Campaign and the man who led the Commission of 125, criticized UT Board of Regents Chairman Gene Powell’s “overt lack of support” for President Bill Powers in a July 8 letter to Powell.

As the Austin American-Statesman reported last night, Jastrow’s letter praises the success of the Capital Campaign, which has raised $342 million for UT this fiscal year. Since its inception in 2006, the campaign has raised $1.6 billion toward a $3 billion goal.

“Clearly, 191,000 plus donors believe President Powers and others at UT are doing a good job, and they believe in the mission and core values of the University of Texas,” Jastrow wrote, adding that no other UT president has ever raised as much or as much in a single year.

Jastrow goes on to question the chairman’s support of the president, pointing out that Powell’s June 28 statement on the University’s $70,000 settlement with controversial reformer Rick O’Donnell supported only Chancellor Francisco Cigarroa, “purposely” failing to voice support for Powers.

“Your overt lack of support for Bill Powers is troubling,” Jastrow wrote, noting that Powell voted to support both the chancellor and the system presidents in a May Board of Regents meeting.

“You voted to support President Powers, and you should honor your vote,” Jastrow says.

Read the full letter here.
Jastrow Letter to Powell


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