JUNE 11, 2020 | MINUTES

A meeting of the Purdue University Board of Trustees convened at 4:46 p.m. on Thursday, June 11, 2020, on the Purdue University campus in West Lafayette, Indiana. The meeting was held in Stewart Center, Room 214, to allow for social distancing amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Restrictions were placed on the number of visitors in the room, and members of the media and the public who wished to observe the meeting virtually were provided such instructions. Everyone in the room was wearing a mask.

All trustees were present: Michael Berghoff, chairman; Sonny Beck; JoAnn Brouillette; Vanessa Castagna; Malcolm DeKryger; Michael Klipsch; Gary Lehman; Noah Scott; Thomas Spurgeon, vice chairman; and Don Thompson. Trustee Castagna attended by video pursuant to Article III, Section 3, of the Bylaws and the Electronic Meeting Policy.

Officers and administrators in attendance were: Mitch Daniels, president; Jay Akridge, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs and diversity; Chris Ruhl, chief financial officer and treasurer; Jim Almond, senior vice president, assistant treasurer, and assistant secretary; Steve Schultz, general counsel; Trent Klingerman, deputy general counsel; Janice Indrutz, corporate secretary and senior executive assistant to the Board; and Ron Elsenbaumer, chancellor of Purdue University Fort Wayne.


Chairman Berghoff called the meeting to order and noted that all trustees were in attendance.


Chairman Berghoff read the list of items on which the Academic and Student Affairs Committee and the Finance Committee had earlier voted to recommend full Board approval, which composed the unanimous consent agenda along with other routine items, as follows:

  • Minutes;
    • Executive Sessions: April 2, 2020, and May 26, 2020
    • Stated Meeting: April 2, 2020
    • Executive Committee: April 9, 2020
    • Special Meeting: May 26, 2020
  • Approval to award a posthumous Bachelor of Science in Computer Science degree to IUPUI student Steven Andrew Camp;
  • Ratification of Dr. Alejandra J. Magana as the W.C. Furnas Professor in Enterprise Excellence;
  • Ratification of Dr. Richard J. Makadok as the Brock Family Chair in Strategic Management;
  • Approval to name the Robert H. Buckman College of Engineering Online Education Program;
  • Approval of M.S. in Graduate Studies;
  • For IUPUI, approval of Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering;
  • For Purdue Fort Wayne, approval of tuition and fee changes;
  • Approval of FY21 budget;
  • Approval of conflict of interest disclosures; and
  • Approval of exceptions to Nepotism Policy.

Chairman Berghoff asked if any of the Board members wished to have an item removed from the consent agenda for further discussion. Trustee Scott informed Chairman Berghoff that he would vote to approve all items with the exception of the conflict of interest disclosures, from which he recused himself because he had been accepted into the ProjectX Safe Campus internship program and would technically be working for Purdue. Hearing no other requests, and upon proper motion duly made and seconded, the Board of Trustees voted unanimously to approve the unanimous consent agenda. All supporting materials were filed with the minutes.


President Daniels profiled the gifts of $1,000,000 or more that the university had received since the Board’s stated meeting on April 2, 2020. The donors of these gifts were recognized in the following Resolution of Appreciation:

WHEREAS, the following friends of Purdue University have generously contributed $1,000,000 or more to move Purdue to greater excellence and preeminence; and

WHEREAS, the University wishes to acknowledge the significance of these gifts to new directions, advancements, and momentum in Purdue’s history, progress, and future;


1. That the University and the Trustees are grateful to these individuals for their leadership and support of Purdue University; and

2. That this resolution be spread upon the minutes of the Board of Trustees as part of the permanent record of the University.

FRIENDS: Robert Buckman and Joyce Mollerup, to support the College of Engineering; Howard Chapman, to support Purdue Fort Wayne; Catherine and Jay Clements, to support the School of Industrial Engineering and the College of Veterinary Medicine; Peter and Ann Lambertus, to support the College of Engineering; and Richard and Jill Piasecki, to support the Purdue Center for Cancer Research, Purdue Polytechnic Institute, and the College of Engineering.

During his overview of the gifts, President Daniels recommended that the Gateway II facility in the new Engineering and Polytechnic Gateway currently under construction be named for Peter and Ann Lambertus in recognition of their $10,000,000 gift to the project.

Chairman Berghoff then called for motions to (1) approve the Resolution of Appreciation for the donors and (2) name Lambertus Hall. Upon proper motions duly made and seconded, the Board of Trustees voted unanimously to approve the resolution and name the facility. Supporting materials were filed with the minutes.


President Daniels informed the Board that, according to the latest survey conducted by The Chronicle of Higher Education, 75% of colleges and universities planned to reopen in the fall. He expressed his appreciation to the Board for having met on May 7, 2020, and May 26, 2020, to approve resolutions that outlined Purdue’s various, initial measures for operating during the COVID-19 pandemic. He then requested the Board’s approval of a third resolution which proposed additional measures for reopening campus in the fall.

Chairman Berghoff highlighted the four key components of the resolution, which read:

WHEREAS, consistent with earlier actions approved by the Board at its special meetings held on May 7, 2020 and May 26, 2020, the Board of Trustees has received, reviewed and discussed additional plans for preparing the West Lafayette campus to return to its learning, research and engagement missions in the midst of the present pandemic, with the objective of protecting the people of Purdue, and particularly those who may be at greater risk for severe illness due to COVID-19:

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Board hereby approves, ratifies and confirms the University leadership’s plans:

1. To provide for the staged return of upper-level students and onboarding of first-year students through Boiler Gold Rush and other orientation programming, taking into account public health guidance from the Protect Purdue Implementation Team and supported by a communications and awareness campaign describing the elements of the Protect Purdue program and its expectations of students as members of the campus community.

2. To implement the testing and tracing program previously authorized by the Board through the development of capabilities featuring: (i) on-campus sample collection through various means and methods, (ii) on-site testing at the new clinical lab facility co-located at the Animal Disease and Diagnostic Lab, (iii) contact tracing through a combination of in-person interviews and technology tools, and (iv) a single point health monitoring system for the West Lafayette campus community integrating health information resources, clinicians, case workers and contact tracer personnel.

3. To develop and conduct dining operations to meet campus needs while maintaining social distancing and de-densification features, including the use of carry-out dining options, reconfigured spaces, regulated serving practices and other food service protocols, whether carried out at existing dining courts, temporary outdoor facilities, and/or additional campus spaces redeployed for this purpose.

4. To develop and offer a “resilient pedagogy” during the Fall 2020 semester to enable students to continue their coursework in the event their class attendance is interrupted due to COVID-19, featuring face-to-face, hybrid and online courses meeting University standards for rigor and excellence while using methods that are resilient, adaptable and flexible to fulfill student needs and to protect students and instructors alike.

RESOLVED, FURTHER, that the members of the University’s leadership are hereby authorized to take such other actions as they deem necessary and proper to carry out the purpose and intent of this resolution, whether herein specifically authorized or not, except such actions as are specifically required by law to be taken by the Board of Trustees as the governing board of The Trustees of Purdue University.

RESOLVED, FURTHER, that the University’s leadership is hereby directed to report regularly to the Board on the development of additional plans related to these and other COVID-19 mitigation measures prior to their final implementation, where appropriate.

Upon proper motion duly made and seconded, the Board of Trustees voted unanimously to approve the resolution. A copy of the resolution was filed with the minutes.

President Daniels commented that, with the Board’s approval of the third resolution today, the basic fundamentals of Purdue’s plan were now in place and would be released the following day in response to the many questions being received from across the campus and the country.

Chairman Berghoff remarked that the level of talent required for, and assigned to, this initiative was unbelievably impressive. He said this was a challenging assignment and its scale was significant because of the number of people it effects both on campus and in the community, and he expressed the Board’s confidence in the Protect Purdue plan.


President Daniels informed the Board that fundraising had declined across the country, including at Purdue, due to the pandemic, and said it would likely remain at low levels. He called upon Mr. Greg Kapp, interim vice president for development, to provide a fundraising report. Mr. Kapp briefly introduced himself to the Board, saying he had been involved with Purdue development since 1998. He reiterated President Daniels’ observation about decreased fundraising, predicting a 30% decline from last year. Mr. Kapp reviewed data from the successful seven-year Ever True fundraising campaign which ended on June 30, 2019. He attributed the exceeded campaign goal to good leadership, good messaging, and a strong economy. He illustrated the decline in gifts beginning in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and he compared gift totals and number of donors to the Big Ten. To conclude the fundraising report, Mr. Kapp outlined challenges and counter measures, the latter which included crowdfunding recently launched for the Protect Purdue initiative. A copy of President Daniels’ and Mr. Kapp’s presentation was filed with the minutes.


Provost Akridge respectfully recommended the Board’s ratification of Dr. Shelley MacDermid Wadsworth as a Distinguished Professor of Human Development and Family Studies. Provost Akridge informed the Board that Dr. MacDermid Wadsworth was an internationally known expert on the intersection of work and family life, specifically on the resilience of military families. He said that, as director of Purdue’s Military Family Research Institute, her work had been funded by a wide range of sources, and Dr. MacDermid Wadsworth had received invitations to testify before Congress, and she had a been a guest of President and Mrs. Obama. Provost Akridge also shared that Dr. MacDermid Wadsworth had received several Purdue awards and was recognized as one of the world’s top 10 contributors to work and family research. Provost Akridge also cited one of five letters received in support of Dr. MacDermid Wadsworth’s appointment. Chairman Berghoff acknowledged that Dr. MacDermid Wadsworth was attending the meeting by video.

Upon proper motion duly made and seconded, the Board of Trustees voted unanimously to ratify Dr. MacDermid Wadsworth’s appointment as Distinguished Professor. Supporting materials were filed with the minutes.


Provost Akridge respectfully recommended the Board’s ratification of Dr. Michael A. Campion as a Distinguished Professor in Management. Provost Akridge informed the Board that Dr. Campion was one of the world’s most published and influential scholars in the field of human resource management and organizational behavior. He said Dr. Campion had been appointed the Herman C. Krannert Professor of Management in 2009, and he highlighted Dr. Campion’s publishing success. Provost Akridge also noted that, in 2010, Dr. Campion had received the highly prestigious Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award from the Society of Industrial and Organizational Psychology, an award given to only one scholar each year, and he cited one of nine letters received in support of Dr. Campion’s appointment.

Upon proper motion duly made and seconded, the Board of Trustees voted unanimously to ratify Dr. Campion’s appointment as Distinguished Professor. Supporting materials were filed with the minutes. The Board acknowledged Dr. Campion’s attendance.


Provost Akridge respectfully recommended the Board’s ratification of Dr. Ourania M. Andrisani as a Distinguished Professor of Basic Medical Sciences. Provost Akridge informed the Board that Dr. Andrisani, a program leader in the Purdue Center for Cancer Research, was an international expert on the molecular biology of the Hepatitis B virus whose studies were paradigm shifting. He said Dr. Andrisani’s research had been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health for 25 years, and she had served as a major professor or committee member for more than 60 Ph.D. students. Provost Akridge cited one of 11 letters received in support of Dr. Andrisani’s appointment, the writer of which stated that her work propelled the projects of other scientists in her field.

Upon proper motion duly made and seconded, the Board of Trustees voted unanimously to ratify Dr. Andrisani’s appointment as Distinguished Professor. Supporting materials were filed with the minutes. The Board acknowledged Dr. Andrisani’s attendance.


Provost Akridge respectfully recommended the Board’s ratification of Dr. Deborah W. Knapp as a Distinguished Professor of Comparative Oncology and the Dolores L. McCall Professor of Comparative Oncology. Provost Akridge informed the Board that Dr. Knapp was one of the most respected and accomplished comparative oncologists in the field of veterinary oncology, saying her work on bladder cancer in dogs was highly regarded and promising findings from her research had moved into human studies. Provost Akridge cited one of six letters received in support of Dr. Knapp’s appointment, the writer of which observed that Dr. Knapp was held in extremely high regard by the cancer research community and her achievements had been nationally and internationally recognized.

Upon proper motion duly made and seconded, the Board of Trustees voted unanimously to ratify Dr. Knapp’s appointment as Distinguished Professor of Comparative Oncology and the Dolores L. McCall Professor of Comparative Oncology. Supporting materials were filed with the minutes. The Board acknowledged Dr. Knapp’s attendance.

Trustee Brouillette shared her understanding that both Dr. Knapp and Dr. Andrisani were the first women in the College of Veterinary Medicine to be recognized as distinguished professors, which was met with applause.


On behalf of Chancellor Elsenbaumer, President Daniels respectfully requested approval of the proposed strategic plan for the Purdue Fort Wayne campus, which, he said, the Board had reviewed with Chancellor Elsenbaumer. President Daniels expressed his belief that it had been a very inclusive process, and he emphasized that the strategic plan was a prerequisite for PFW’s accreditation in 2021.

Upon proper motion duly made and seconded, the Board of Trustees voted unanimously to approve the Purdue Fort Wayne strategic plan. Supporting materials were filed with the minutes. Chancellor Elsenbaumer thanked the Board for approving the plan, saying it was very important for the campus.


Chairman Berghoff announced that this final agenda item had been 15 years in the making and said the Resolution of Appreciation for Vice Chairman Spurgeon had been read in its entirety during dinner the previous evening. Chairman Berghoff remarked that it was humbling to see all that Vice Chairman had been involved in and accomplished. Upon proper motion duly made and second, the Board of Trustees voted unanimously to approve the following resolution:

WHEREAS, Thomas E. Spurgeon has served Purdue University with excellence and dedication as a member of the Board of Trustees from 2005 to 2020, having been elected by the Purdue Alumni Association as an alumni trustee; and

WHEREAS, Tom provided his leadership to the Board as chairman (2013-15) and vice chairman (2011-13 and 2015-20), as well as serving as chair of the Board’s Compensation Committee and Audit and Risk Management Committee; and

WHEREAS, Tom was a member of the Presidential Search Committee that recommended finalist Mitchell E. Daniels, Jr. to the Board to serve as Purdue’s 12th president; and

WHEREAS, as chair of the Compensation Committee, Tom helped lay the foundation for an innovative Presidential Pay at Risk Program, which put a portion of the president’s salary at risk and payable only to the extent that relevant performance metrics were met; and

WHEREAS, Tom and his fellow board members committed to President Daniels’ Purdue Moves, a range of initiatives designed to broaden the University’s global impact and enhance educational opportunities for its students, investing in areas of strength in world-changing research, leadership in the STEM disciplines, and transformative education; and

WHEREAS, Tom and his fellow board members recognized the need for colleges and universities to make affordability a priority, leading to nine consecutive years (2013-22) without an increase in tuition at Purdue while continuing to invest in the important work and mission of the institution; and

WHEREAS, as chair of the Audit and Risk Management Committee, Tom maintained oversight of the university’s financial position and risk profile and provided guidance to enable university employees and others to submit information in a confidential and anonymous manner; and

WHEREAS, his service to Purdue included membership on the 2000-2007 Campaign for Purdue steering committee and the Purdue Athletic Advisory Council, while also serving on the executive committee of the Purdue Alumni Association Board of Directors and chairing its Strategic Planning Task Force; and

WHEREAS, Tom is a 1961 Distinguished Military Graduate of Purdue’s industrial management undergraduate program and he went on to earn an MBA from Indiana University in 1966; and

WHEREAS, while a student, he was a manager for the Boilermaker football team and was active in the ROTC program; and

WHEREAS, Tom enlisted in the Army following graduation and went on to serve as a nuclear weapons officer and have an active role in some of the most classified activities in our nation’s military history until his discharge in 1964; and

WHEREAS, Tom became an entrepreneur who succeeded in a variety of business opportunities, beginning with Cummins Engine Company, followed by the ownership and management of three companies: Gott Corporation of Winfield, Kansas; Cosco of Columbus, Indiana; and Lincoln Office of Peoria, Illinois; and

WHEREAS, he has served on various corporate and community boards and presently serves as a trustee on the Methodist Health Services Corporation board in Peoria, Illinois; and

WHEREAS, he was selected to the 2014 Old Masters program and invited to share his significant success and experiences with students to inspire their own future success as Boilermakers; and

WHEREAS, Tom was an inaugural member of the Columbus High School Hall of Fame in 2013, a class which included fellow Boilermakers Ray Eddy and “Dutch” Fehring; and

WHEREAS, Tom received the President’s Council Distinguished Pinnacle Award in 2002; Purdue Athletics Diamond “P” Award in 2005; Purdue Alumni Citizenship Award in 2008; Krannert School of Management Distinguished Alumni Award and Phi Gamma Delta Distinguished Fiji Award in 2015; and Legends Award from the National Football Foundation in 2016; and

WHEREAS, Tom has been a fervent supporter of Purdue Athletics, endowing a scholarship for the men’s and women’s golf programs and investing in student-athletes as a longstanding member of the John Purdue Club; and

WHEREAS, Tom’s generous contributions to the University resulted in the construction of Hanley Hall on the Purdue campus and in three facilities bearing his name — the Tom Spurgeon Golf Training Center, the Spurgeon Hall of Spirit in the Dauch Alumni Center, and the Spurgeon Club at Mackey Arena; and

WHEREAS, Tom attended countless commencement ceremonies as a member of the platform party, proudly observing as thousands of students walked across the stage in Elliott Hall of Music to receive their Purdue diplomas and become fellow alumni; and

WHEREAS, Tom served as president of the Purdue Alumni Club of Peoria, Illinois, and chairman of the Purdue Alumni Club of Central Illinois, and he continues to be active with his fraternity, Phi Gamma Delta, and

WHEREAS, Thomas E. Spurgeon will step down from the Purdue University Board of Trustees on June 30, 2020;


1. That the Trustees recognize the positive impact of Thomas E. Spurgeon’s 15-year tenure as a board member; and

2. That enormous gratitude and appreciation are expressed to Tom for his generosity, loyalty, and service to Purdue University; and

3. That Tom is to be congratulated and thanked for his tremendous and passionate contributions to his alma mater; and

4. That his many achievements are part of the great, permanent history of Purdue and will never be forgotten; and

5. That this resolution be spread upon the minutes of the Board of Trustees as part of the permanent record of Purdue University for all to witness.

A formal copy of the resolution was filed with the minutes.

Vice Chairman Spurgeon remarked that the resolution of appreciation was bittersweet. He counted that, during his 15-year tenure on the Board, he had served with 30 different trustees, 8 of whom were student trustees, and he revered the quality of the student trustees. Mr. Spurgeon said it had been a privilege to serve on the Board of Trustees and bond with his fellow trustees. He estimated that he had driven more than 100,000 miles from his home in Peoria, Illinois, to attend more than 100 board meetings and more than 100 commencement ceremonies, and he said his dedication had been rewarded with the special friendship of his fellow trustees and a sense of belonging to something good. Mr. Spurgeon concluded his remarks by saying that, though he was leaving his post now, he would never be far away and would continue to serve Purdue University. He received a standing ovation. Chairman Berghoff remarked that Vice Chairman Spurgeon’s love for Purdue was obvious.


By consent, the meeting adjourned at 5:26 p.m.


During the meeting of the Academic and Student Affairs Committee, which preceded the stated meeting and was attending by all members of the Board, Trustee Scott expressed his desire to comment on the national Black Lives Matter movement, which had been further propelled by the death of a black man named George Floyd on May 25, 2020, in Minneapolis, Minnesota, while Mr. Floyd was forcefully detained by a white police officer. This human tragedy resulted in national protests and civil unrest which lasted for approximately six weeks, and the police officer was charged with second-degree murder. A printed history of these events was filed with the minutes.

Trustee Scott commended Ms. Assata Gilmore, the new president of Purdue Student Government, and said he echoed the letter she sent to students regarding the national events surrounding Mr. Floyd’s death. He shared an analogy which he hoped would help others gain perspective of the events, and he firmly stated, “Black lives matter.” Trustee Scott concluded his remarks by saying, “I stand with you, we stand with you, and we, together, will need to come together as a campus and a country to build a better world for tomorrow.”

President Daniels endorsed Trustee Scott’s comments and said he looked forward to working with him to make it happen. Chairman Berghoff then shared that the Board members had discussed their personal reactions to the tragedy and civil unrest and they had agreed that Purdue University needed to do everything possible to ensure that every student had an opportunity to experience all the university offered regardless of students’ race, rural/urban background, etc. As a result, he announced that a committee would be sanctioned to address these issues, much like the Safe Campus Committee and subsequent Protect Purdue Implementation Team had been sanctioned to address COVID-19 pandemic issues faced by the university.

Trustee Thompson remarked that he had served on the Board for over ten years and said, “I’ve not been more proud of any conversation than the ones we were having last night and today…because they spoke about us moving toward action…” He continued, “I think it’s time for us to move forward. I think this body can exhibit the kind of leadership that Noah talked about. Yes, Noah, my life matters. My black life matters…I need you to show me. Words are cheap…so I’d ask that we serve the way I know we can, and we take the message that Noah just gave us, and we act like the Board we are, and we lead and we try to make honest, substantial changes with integrity the best we can…we do it for the kids to show that, yes, black lives do matter.”

A copy of Ms. Gilmore’s letter and a complete transcript of the Black Lives Matter conversation was filed with the minutes.