The Board of Supervisors “absolutely” stands by its decision not to release the names of LSU presidential candidates that were demanded by multiple parties including The Daily Reveille, said Presidential Search Committee chair and Board of Supervisors member Blake Chatelain on Wednesday morning.
The Board held an executive session at its Wednesday meeting to discuss its next move regarding the public records requests submitted by The Advocate and Andrea Gallo, editor in chief of the Reveille. The session came under the threat of a lawsuit from Gallo, whose attorney Scott Sternberg sent LSU a letter last week asking the University to seek an attorney general's opinion on the secretive search.
“This is the norm in 45 states,” Chatelain said. “Either way you do it, there are going to be unanswered questions.”
Withholding the records of the 34 other candidates considered for the LSU president position leaves the question of who else the Board could have hired, but if the record was made public, Chatelain said the issue would be different.
"The question is who would not have applied if the records had been made public," he said.
LSU President-Elect F. King Alexander said he wouldn’t have allowed his name to be considered by the Presidential Search Committee if he wasn’t guaranteed confidentiality.
"This is probably the fourth lawsuit like this that I’ve seen," Alexander said. "Often times these fizzle out, and the Board’s just been put in a very difficult situation of identifying people and bringing them in. If you bring them in there’s the potential for them to lose their jobs."