Half the USM Faculty Voted to Remove President Selma Botman. The Other Half Were Too Busy Putting Toilet Paper in Her Shrubs to Vote

selma botman

selma botmanOver half of all faculty at the University of Southern Maine cast votes saying they don’t have confidence in USM President Selma Botman. The vote needed a two-thirds majority to pass and be considered the will of the faculty. But with a voter turnout of about 75 percent, over 68 percent of faculty who voted cast ballots of no confidence in Botman. The Faculty Senate Executive Committee will submit the results to the University of Maine System Chancellor James Page and the board of trustees. The no-confidence referendum was triggered by a group of senior faculty who circulated a petition in early April calling for the vote, receiving 53 signatures, more than the 10 percent of all faculty required for a petition to mandate a referendum. Botman released a statement around after the vote was tallied saying it didn’t receive the two-thirds majority needed to pass. “Our challenges remain and we must, as a community, address them and we will do so,” she said in the statement. Faculty began casting their ballots Tuesday at locations in Portland, Gorham and Lewiston, and voting closed today at 4 p.m. Ronald Schmidt, a political science professor and the media contact for the Faculty Senate, released the results to The Free Press this evening after the committee tasked with counting ballots released the results to the Executive Committee. “I think this says there is intense disagreement over the future direction of the university,” Schmidt said. “Everybody needs time to think about what these numbers mean, and then we need to start talking.” (read more at The Free Press)

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