WSU President Dobelle placed on paid administrative leave - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

WSU President Dobelle placed on paid administrative leave

WESTFIELD, MA (WSHM) -

After 10 hours of meeting in executive session, the Westfield State Board of Trustees voted to place President Evan Dobelle on paid administrative leave pending another investigation into his spending of the Westfield State Foundation's money. 

"I wish I could speak to you, but the reality is, I can't," said Dobelle briefly before police blocked the media from asking any questions. 

His lawyer, Ross Garber, said he was not surprised by the vote, but he was still disappointed. 

"Given the limited amount of information that the board had, given the unfair process and given the enormous political pressure, I am not surprised by the results. I hope and expect and insist in the next couple of weeks that the board and the public can get a full story," said Garber. 

Wednesday's vote stems from a report released back in August that showed Dobelle mixed personal and business expenses on the university's credit card. 

Dobelle has insisted that every dime he has spent was for the good of the school. 

Since he took office, the school has seen millions of dollars in revenue and has undergone a series of renovations, including a new dormitory and updates to classrooms. 

Dobelle's leave will continue until Nov. 25 while a second investigation into his spending is done by the Boston law firm Fish and Richardson. 

Westfield State Board of Trustees Chairman John Flynn said the board voted unanimously to place Dobelle on leave. 

Dobelle's attorney said they are considering taking legal action against the board because they said trustees violated Dobelle's rights by hiring an auditor last year without full approval from the entire board. 

Before the trustees voted to place Dobelle on leave, the campus faculty and library union held a no-confidence vote in Dobelle. 

The breakdown of those votes include: 138 voting no confidence, 61 voting confidence and 16 voting abstained. 

"I voted no confidence in our president because I feel he cannot lead the institution anymore, but that's my own opinion," said Buzz Hoagland, chair of the biology department. 

But amid both of Wednesday's votes, there is still support on campus for Dobelle. 

"I have full confidence in my president. It's unfortunate that the campus is so divided now because there are people who are very supportive of him," said faculty member Laurie Simpson. 

Students at the college said the entire ordeal has been frustrating for them. 

"They've been keeping us out of this process for way too long. The fact that they haven't included us in anything, as the statement from Dobelle has ostracized us away from this process is very disheartening for us," said senior Victor Martinez-Dias. 

Westfield State released a statement on Wednesday's votes, reading in part, "At Westfield State University, we remain inspired by our students, their curiosity and ambition. With them in mind, we are proud of our accomplishments and continue to focus on achieving excellence every day." 

Copyright 2013 WSHM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Grief counselors available, community mourns loss of student

    Grief counselors available, community mourns loss of student

    Tuesday, May 23 2017 5:37 AM EDT2017-05-23 09:37:37 GMT
    Tuesday, May 23 2017 5:37 AM EDT2017-05-23 09:37:37 GMT
    Western Mass News photoWestern Mass News photo
    Grief counselors will be available Tuesday at Springfield Public Schools, as students and faculty remember 17-year old Luis Gomez. Gomez was last seen on Saturday with his friends at Watershops pond, where a body was recovered Monday.  It was at the pond Monday, where police found a body after hours and hours of searching. They were assisted by state and environmental police in their search.  The Commerce high school junior loved basketball. His sister...More >>
    Grief counselors will be available Tuesday at Springfield Public Schools, as students and faculty remember 17-year old Luis Gomez. Gomez was last seen on Saturday with his friends at Watershops pond, where a body was recovered Monday.  It was at the pond Monday, where police found a body after hours and hours of searching. They were assisted by state and environmental police in their search.  The Commerce high school junior loved basketball. His sister...More >>
  • Prosecutor: Man's suicide attempt killed his girlfriend instead

    Prosecutor: Man's suicide attempt killed his girlfriend instead

    Tuesday, May 23 2017 4:38 AM EDT2017-05-23 08:38:00 GMT
    Tuesday, May 23 2017 4:44 AM EDT2017-05-23 08:44:27 GMT
    A judge has entered a not guilty plea for Victor Sibson, an Alaska man accused of killing his girlfriend after he shot himself and the bullet traveled through his head and hit his girlfriend in the chest. (Anchorage Police Department via AP)A judge has entered a not guilty plea for Victor Sibson, an Alaska man accused of killing his girlfriend after he shot himself and the bullet traveled through his head and hit his girlfriend in the chest. (Anchorage Police Department via AP)

    An Alaska man is accused of killing his girlfriend after he shot himself and the bullet traveled through his head and hit his girlfriend in the chest. 

    More >>

    An Alaska man is accused of killing his girlfriend after he shot himself and the bullet traveled through his head and hit his girlfriend in the chest. 

    More >>
  • EXCLUSIVE

    Laura Reilly accused of misleading police in Jo Ringer disappearance

    Laura Reilly accused of misleading police in Jo Ringer disappearance

    Monday, May 22 2017 5:09 PM EDT2017-05-22 21:09:12 GMT
    Monday, May 22 2017 5:14 PM EDT2017-05-22 21:14:24 GMT

    At just 19-years-old, Savanah Ringer has dedicated her life to finding her mother. Her mother, Joanne ‘Jo’ Ringer of Clarksburg has been missing for months.

    More >>

    At just 19-years-old, Savanah Ringer has dedicated her life to finding her mother. Her mother, Joanne ‘Jo’ Ringer of Clarksburg has been missing for months.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly