Peacock responds to Faculty Senate vote of ‘no confidence’

Joshua Farmer

Chancellor Kenneth Peacock sent an email to Appalachian State University faculty Wednesday commenting on the Faculty Senate’s vote of “no confidence” in the leadership of Provost Lori Gonzalez on Monday.

“I have listened and given serious and thoughtful consideration to your feedback, and I thank the Faculty Senate and the campus community for continuing to share their voices on important issues,” Peacock said in the letter.

Peacock went on to express his support for the provost.

“Since arriving on campus, Provost Gonzalez has tirelessly met challenges, many of which existed long before her arrival, with great professionalism and dedication,” he said in the letter.

Peacock said that he and the provost remain committed to working on the areas of concern that faculty has identified and that there is always room for improvement.

“All of us in higher education are facing many challenges, with more likely in the days to come. The Provost and I are ready and willing to dig deep into the issues and engage in meaningful dialogue with our faculty about how we address them and move forward,” Peacock said.

Government and justice studies professor Matthew Robinson responded to the letter sent out by Peacock.

“The message to me is that for faculty, our voices really don’t matter, our signatures don’t matter and our votes don’t matter,” Robinson said. “It appears that faculty are expected to just forget their legitimate complaints and serious concerns with no resolution to them and simultaneously ‘unite and focus on our mission—to teach, research and serve’ in spite of the fact that we never actually stopped engaging in teaching, research and service all along.”

Provost Lori Gonzalez commented on the vote of no confidence that happened Monday.

“Over the course of my career, I have been required to make hard decisions and deal with difficult circumstances,” Gonzalez said. “In the days ahead, issues remain that we need to address together with trust and collegiality.”

Gonzalez said that she looks forward to a discussion with Faculty Senate about their concerns.

“I have been overwhelmed with the outpouring of support from faculty and staff across the campus over the past weeks,” Gonzalez said.

Story: STEPHANIE SANSOUCY, Senior News Reporter