Bill Ayers Denied Emeritus Title

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In his/her professional life, a university professor goes through certain signposts or stages:

  • S/he begins as Assistant Professor, if hired as a “ladder” faculty instead of a year-to-year appointment as a Lecturer or Instructor, which was Obama’s title at Chicago Law School. This is the probation period, which lasts 4 to 6 years, depending on the college/university.
  • At the end of the Assistant Professor period, the individual is evaluated for the much-sought goal of tenure. A tenured professor is assured job security, but not advancement/promotion, and can be fired only for reasons of professional/criminal misconduct or a dire university financial crisis.
  • If tenure is conferred, the individual is also promoted to Associate Professor rank.
  • Promotion to the next and last rank of Full Professor is dependent, not on years served, but on merit — excellence in research and publication, and the attainment of a national, if not international, reputation. Academics have retired as Associate Professor, never having been promoted to Full Professorship.
  • The last honor/distinction conferred on an academic is to retire as an Emeritus (or the feminine Emerita) — a title that may be given to a full professor who retires in good standing. According to the American Council on Education it is typically awarded for “long and distinguished service” although standards for granting professor emeritus status vary  from one institution to another.

So it is most interesting that the University of Illinois-Urbana (UI) has denied the Emeritus title to William Ayers — former member of the 1960s radical Marxist group Weather Underground; unrepentant domestic terrorist; and Chicago buddy and ghostwriter of Barack Hussein Obama. Well done, UI trustees!

Ayers denied emeritus status after plea from Chris Kennedy

By Jodi S. Cohen – Chicago Breaking News – September 23, 2010

In a very unusual move, University of Illinois trustees today denied giving emeritus status to controversial retired professor William Ayers.
The vote, at a U. of I. board meeting in Urbana, was unanimous and came after a passionate speech by board chair Christopher Kennedy, who invoked the 1968 assassination of his father, Sen. Robert F. Kennedy in saying that he was voting his “conscience.”
The other trustees, without comment, also voted against the appointment.
Ayers, the Vietnam War-era radical, had been an education faculty member at UIC since 1987. He retired effective Aug. 31 and then sought the emeritus faculty status, a largely honorific title that includes some benefits such as library privileges. A co-founder of the Weather Underground anti-war group, Ayers was frequently in the media spotlight and, as such, was one of the university’s best known faculty members.
While trustees regularly vote on emeritus appointments, they rarely comment about them. But in an emotional statement, Kennedy discussed his reasons for voting against Ayers’ request.
“I am guided by my conscience and one which has been formed by a series of experiences, many of which have been shared with the people of our country and mark each of us in a profound way,” Kennedy said. He said he could not confer the title “to a man whose body of work includes a book dedicated in part to the man who murdered my father.” Kennedy was referring a 1974 book co-authored by Ayers, “Prairie Fire,” which was dedicated to a long list of people including Robert Kennedy assassin Sirhan Sirhan and “all political prisoners in the U.S.”
Ayers became a controversial figure in Barack Obama’s presidential campaign because they worked on a school-reform initiative together, leading opponents to say Obama was linked to a “terrorist.” UIC was forced to release more than 1,000 files detailing the activities of that group. The university also faced questions in 2001 after Ayers wrote in his memoir about helping with the non-fatal bombings of government buildings.
According to the UIC faculty handbook, the granting of emeritus status is “based on merit” and is “an extraordinary title that is given for extraordinary service.” Kennedy said he hoped faculty, staff and Illinois residents “understand my motives and my reasoning” and concluded: “How could I do anything else?”
Ayers could not be reached for comment, and UIC School of Education Dean Vicki Chou did not return a call from the Tribune. She told the Tribune last month that Ayers has “been really a very good colleague here” and “the good far outweighs any negative press.”
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0 responses to “Bill Ayers Denied Emeritus Title

  1. Yea,my thoughts to Steve. Ayers should not even be walking around a free man. The thought of him having anything to do with our education system is outrageous! We need to cleanse the education system of people like him. They have worked long and hard on their devious plans to infiltrate the education system,and we let it happen. Kevin Jennings is one that needs to go ASAP.

  2. Bill Ayers deserves to be an Emeritus, just like Obama deserves to be POTUS.
    That whole Chicago crew of Obama is a bunch of criminals, liars, and miscreants.

  3. Steve,this is shocking. Put this on the list. Because they are not going too far with it. The “Fraud” in our White House has sure made them brazen. That’s ok they have shown us their ugly,evil heads,we now know who they are. Now it is up to us to get things back in order. Restore honor integrity,respect once again. We must for our childrens sake. Then we must teach them the truth and nothing but the truth.

  4. Ditto Steve! I really hope people will get involved with their local government,schoolboards,spend time seeing what is going on in their school. City Councils ect… It is crucial.

  5. Nothing Ayers did, before or after his treasonous/criminal behavior could ever atone for what he did. I am glad they did not give him emeritus status. He never showed remorse for his actions, but said he wished he’d done more. A man of this caliber and who writes a book and gives credence to an assassin like Sirhan-Sirhan, based on absolutely nothing redeeming , isn’t meritorious.
    They say your past always catches up with you. In this cases it has. Too bad he was ever put in a position to indoctrinate the unknowing naive young in any University.


  7. “the good far outweighs any negative press”. So killing a police officer & bombing the Pentagon is now labeled as negative press? I’m sure Holder’s DOSJ would concur w/that as long as it fits their political views. At least they got it right on this one…


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