Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Another Murder of A Black, Gay English Professor

Don Belton. Photo credit: Indiana University.

The ranks of Black and openly gay professors, already not large, has been tragically diminished, again.

Two days after the accused murderer of UC Riverside (and formerly UC Irvine) English Prof. Lindon Barrett was found dead in his jail cell, another Black, gay English Professor has been murdered, this time in Indiana.

Don Belton, an English Professor at Indiana University, was viciously stabbed to death 27 December 2009 at his Bloomington, Indiana, home by Mike Griffin, a blue-eyed ex-Marine who had served in Iraq. Griffin turns 26 next Monday. According to friends of Prof. Belton, Griffin has an ongoing relationship with Belton and invited him and his girlfriend over to his home on Christmas day. A policeman's affidavit notes that Belton, in a diary entry written a week before, had expressed happiness about "Michael" coming into his life.

Griffin, who was turned in by his girlfriend, is now claiming that Belton sexually assaulted him twice on Christmas Day and when Belton would not apologize, he killed him two days later, stabbing him "until he quit moving", with a "peace keeper" knife he acquired before heading for Iraq, according to the police. However, in court today, Griffin pleaded not guilty.

Belton's friends have rallied to the slain professor's defense, arguing that Griffin's claim of being assaulted is nothing short of a dubious "gay panic" defense, used to inflame the public and stirr up homophobia. They have organized a vigil for New Year's Day and also created a web page to ensure justice for Don Belton:

The site also links to research materials debunking the gay panic defense.

Hopefully, the truth will prevail, given that Griffin appears to have acted with premeditation, arriving in Belton's home with a change of clothes (he later dumped the bloodied clothes) and his peace keeper knife tucked in a scabbard on his belt.

The parallels with the Lindon Barrett case are inescapable. Both professors (Belton was 53; Barrett, 46) apparently had younger lovers, in their 20s, and both lovers in the end betrayed them.

According to Belton's profile on the IU web site, he is the author of a novel, Almost Midnight and editor of anthology on black masculinity, Speak My Name.

He previously taught literature, fiction and world cinema at Macalester College, the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and the University of Pennsylvania.

Belton's own web site, still up, shows some of his quirkiness and humor: "Greetings! Don Belton here. I am an author, educator, jazz fiend, bibliophile and cineaste. Welcome to my website and blog. In the coming weeks and months you will find here what I trust will be an exciting and growing compendium of culture, arts, and commentary. So, stay tuned!"

His own bio states, tongue in cheek: "Don was born in posh penthouse on the Right Bank of Paris with a silver spoon in his mouth, listening to Miles Davis playing live in celebration of his birth."

Another life snuffed out. Rest In Peace Don.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Suspect in Lindon Barrett murder found dead Christmas Day

Lindon Barrett

Marlon Martinez, accused in the 2008 strangulation death of longtime UCI English/African American Studies Prof. Lindon Barrett (who had gone to teach at UC Riverside at the time) has been found dead in his cell in the Los Angeles County Men's Central Jail.

According to the Long Beach Press Telegram, Martinez, 22, "died in a six-person cell on Dec. 25 after sheriff's deputies conducting a security check found him suffering from respiratory distress and were unable to revive him."

Autopsy results are inconclusive, pending toxicology tests, which could take more than six weeks, according to the 28 December 2009 news report.

This brings to a sudden and unexpected close any opportunity to uncover why Prof. Barrett was killed and the nature of his relationship with the accused.

For the July 21, 2008 KUCI Subversity radio program on Prof. Barrett (which also aired on KUCR at UC Riverside) and was excerpted on KPCC, click here: .

Monday, December 28, 2009

A Look Back: 2009 Passings: Los Angeles Times Orange County Edition

Irvine -- In our end-of-the-year edition today (28 December 2009),
Subversity, a KUCI public affairs program, looks back at 2009. It is
customary to reflect on those who have passed away in the year. We
did a show on Michael Jackson as a queer icon when the pop icon died,
and two programs on the elimination of an important UCI resource, SAAS, the
Student Academic Advanced Services, and over the months, many shows
on the slow -- and lingering death -- of the California Master Plan
for Higher Education and of the University of California as a public

Today, however, we look back another passing, that of a once-important OC

In this Subversity look back at 2009, we repeat an airing of our
March 9, 2009 remembrance of the glorious days of the Los Angeles
Times OC edition, with long-time Times reporter David Reyes, and
observer John Earl, now publisher of OC Voice, now "the Green Voice for the Orange Coast."
The show airs 9 a.m. today on KUCI, 88.9 FM in Orange County,
California, and is simulcast via

See also:

Orange County - Ex-Times Scribes Dishes on OC Edition Demise, OC Weekly Rise.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Win for all: Library to open 24 hours

Irvine -- In a victory for common sense, UCI will keep a large campus library open 24 hours starting this coming Friday (4 December) through the end of Finals (the subsequent Friday at 5 p.m.). See library announcement.

Faced with the prospect of student protesters staging a "study-in" after the original 5 p.m. closure Friday at what the protesters have renamed the Langston Hughes Library, wise heads prevailed and the University found the money to keep the library open.

Some faculty members have been invited to participate in the teach-in announced earlier. According to the protesters' posters, teach-in activities begin outside Langson Library at 3 p.m. on Friday, 4 December.

The prospect of police intervening if the library were occupied after hours must have spurred the University to find the funds to keep the library open. After all, keeping the library open 24 hours costs less than paying overtime to police decked out in riot gear.

And UCI protesters have this reaction to the library staying open during exam week and the weekend before: "Direct action gets the goods!" See more of the protesters' reaction here.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Naming Opportunities

Posters from protesters' site

Irvine -- When UCI opened in 1965, its main library was named, appropriately enough, Main Library. It was not until 2003 when a Newport-Beach real estate entrepreneur, Jack Langson, gave $5 million to the University of California that it got renamed, of course, after himself, as Jack Langson Library.

The library got itself a needed facelift, new carpeting and more PCs for students to use and comfortable, colorful sofas for them to sit in, and for some to sleep on.

Talking about naming opportunities, Lang Son is of course, the name of a northern province in Vietnam, next to China, so colleagues there often laugh when I say I am from Langson Library.

Fast forward to late November 2009, right after the UC Regents hike "fees" (they can't call it tuition according to the California Higher Education Master Plan) an outrageous 32%. UCI students protesting the fee hikes now plan a "study-in" at Langson Library Friday December 4, 2009, after 5 p.m. closing hours, calling it a form of resistance to the fee hikes. In "liberating Langson," "students, faculty and workers" have also taken the opportunity to rename it, rather creatively one might say, "Langston Hughes Library," after the gay Harlem Renaissance poet and literary master.

Their Facebook page on "liberating" the library already has over a 1,000 listed as potentially attending the study-in.

Their manifesto, addressed to UCI's librarians and library staff, declares:

"As students, we believe we should have full access to books, computers,
and library materials before and during Finals Week. We also know that
the funds exist within the UC system to maintain a fully-staffed,
adequately paid 24 hour library on campus. Close to 8 billion dollars of
discretionary funding is sitting untouched, and the UC has taken out
over 6 billion dollars in construction bonds. This money comes from our
tuition and our and our parents’ taxes, and we want a piece of it.
Similarly, we are disgusted by the University’s negotiation process,
offering library staff representatives the “choice” of layoffs or pay
cuts; we want neither!"

The unionized librarians accepted the University's pay cut/furlough plan, but library assistants (in the Coalition of University Employees) will be undergoing 11 rotating layoff days next summer.

The study-in organizers explain:

"In taking over the library and keeping it open overnight Friday and
perhaps indefinitely thereafter, we are exerting our agency as students
and members of the UC community. We do not expect anything of you beyond
your normal work requirements, and despite administrative claims to the
contrary, we are not asking you to stay beyond your regular work hours.
We only ask of you, and of the University, that we retain access to
automated check-out machines, computer labs, and other basic unstaffed
resources. We additionally condemn any attempts by the administration to
shut off power or Internet access or lock the main doors.

"Our only barricades will be our bodies so long as authorities respond
peacefully to us, and it is our intent to leave the library cleaner than
how we found it. We intend to use the space for teach-ins about the
budget crisis, exam review sessions, study groups, and quiet study. On
Saturday at 1pm, we will be holding a General Assembly for the UCI
community to assess our ability to remain in Langson Library and
consider our capacity for further action. Should you or your coworkers
voluntarily choose to stay in the library for any period of time in
order to assist us in any way, you have our humble appreciation."

The manifesto goes on to make some grand statement of solidarity with past instances of direct action:

"This action is being carried out in solidarity with 15 prior occupations
in the UC and CSU systems this quarter, and with the occupations
throughout the world, most recently in Croatia, Serbia, Germany,
Austria, Italy, and Great Britain. While this may be the first attempted
occupation at UCI, it will not be the last. We will occupy the entire
campus, building by building, until everything that has been taken from
us is ours again.

It ends with a rallying cry: "LONG LIVE THE OCCUPATIONS!"

The planned occupiers say this: "We are an autonomous body in Orange County attempting to subvert hegemonic, state-supporting/ed protest by promoting radical discourse and militant action."

Of course, occupations have a mixed record in the UC recently, without the students necessarily achieving all their demands, although undoubtedly they became radicalized by the them. At UCLA, Berkeley, and Santa Cruz this past week, student occupiers of buildings on those campuses were forced to vacate them at risk of being arrested for "tresspassing." At Berkeley, over 40 were arrested.

Study-ins, however, have been successfully held at libraries in other UCs. One at Berkeley's Anthropology Library "led administrators to allocate funds from unrestricted donations" to keep that and similar specialized libraries on campus open. In addition, "student activism around the finals week closure brought about an awareness of the issue that led to a private donation to keep the libraries open during finals week" ("UC Libraries Face cuts, But Faculty and Student Activism Pays Off," UC-AFT Perspective, Fall 2009, p.9.)

Prospects for a peaceful resolution at UCI are as yet unknown. Will the University welcome students to stay for the duration of the study-in?

I like Langston Hughes, but given that Lang Son was where noted General Võ Nguyên Giáp defeated the French colonial forces there in 1950 in one of the first successes of the First Indochina War, facilitating military aid from China across the border, perhaps the students could have just added a blank space and renamed it Lang Son Library as well.

Monday, November 23, 2009

UCI Students Protest Fee Hikes

Dennis Lopez & Hadeer Soliman at KUCI. Photo © Daniel C. Tsang 2009

UCI Students Fight Back Against Fee Increases

Updated with audio link: To listen to our interview with Dennis Lopez and Hadeer Soliman, click here: .

Irvine - UCI students, faculty and staff gear up for a huge noon rally
Tuesday (24 November 2009) at the UCI flagpole.
The rally, sponsored by a host of student groups,
comes in the wake of Regental action the
past Thursday to raise student fees a third for the coming year,
starting Spring Quarter.

On the 23 November 2009 edition of Subversity, we talked with Dennis Lopez of UCI's Worker-Student Alliance
and Muslim Student Association member Hadeer Soliman.

According to the rally Facebook page.

"The UC has voted to raise tuition by 32%! Students were brutally
assaulted at UCLA for using their right of freedom of speech! Cuts are
coming from the bottom not the top, while the administrators are
getting raises workers are getting fired and student class sizes get
larger. It is time that we as students come together in solidarity to
tell the UC it's our UC!!!"


"Come out and hear stories from those affected and find out what we
can do from here! Please invite at least 10 others. This is our time
in history will we live up to the responsibility?


"We stress that this is a peaceful rally, however, we as citizens of
the United States can and will exercise of First amendment Rights of
free speech!"

Calling "even studying is now a form of resistance," the organizers
also plan a teach-in outside Langson Library Friday December 4 at 3
p.m. followed by a "study-in" in the library at 4 p.m., followed by an
"all-night" teach-in at 5 p.m., past closing hours. On the next day, a
Saturday, a "general assembly" is slated for the Graduate Reading Room
in the library at 1 p.m.

For details see another Facebook page.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

From Liberation Struggle to University Presidency in Vietnam

Dr. Bui Tran Phuong at UCI's Langson Library. Photo © Daniel C. Tsang 2009.

Updated with audio link: To listen to our interview with Dr. Phuong, click here: .

On the 9 November 2009 edition of Subversity, a KUCI public affairs program, we talk with a university president from Vietnam. Dr. Bui Tran Phuong is president of Hoa Sen University in Ho Chi Minh City and she has an interesting story to tell, one that is rarely heard publicly in Orange County, California.

When she was ten, his father, who was in the Viet Minh resistance movement, was arrested with her by the south Vietnamese police under then-Pres. Ngo Dinh Diem. She was released after a day, but her father spent several years in prison, enduring torture.

Thus began her political awakening, that brought her to Paris where she
joined in distributing agitprop resisting both the south Vietnamese
government and U.S. invaders to her homeland, from the political active and (at the time) leftist Vietnamese diaspora abroad. After graduating from Sorbonne, she returned to Saigon and took part in the liberation movement.

Today she is a university president and grappling with the challenge of improving higher education in Vietnam. In an era of globalization, at her university, juniors and seniors will soon be offered the choice to be taught in English. But her enduring passion remains history; she is hoping to organize an international network of scholars interested in women and war.

Dr. Phuong visited UC Irvine this past Thursday, 5 November 2009.

The show airs Monday 9 November 2009 from 9-10 a.m. on KUCI, 88.9 fm in Orange County, California, and is simulcast via

Podcasts will be available afterwards. Interviewing her is show host Daniel C. Tsang.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Le-Van Kiet's Dust of Life begins theatrical showings with benefit premiere; Coco Paris LLC distributes the film

Lee Ngo, Dan Tran and director Le-Van Kiet outside KUCI. Photo © Daniel C. Tsang 2009

Updated with audio link: To listen to the 2 November 2009 Subversity show, click here: .

Irvine -- For the November 2, 2009 edition of Subversity, a KUCI
public affairs program, at 9 a.m., we feature again Le-Van Kiet, the director of Dust of Life, a gritty, local film focusing on youth in Little Saigon in an era of police surveillance of Asian youth and gang activity. Dust of Life makes its theatrical premiere this coming Friday. He is joined by the distributors of his film, Dan Tran, President of Coco Paris LLC, and Lee Ngo, marketing consultant. (Clocks have changed in U.S. and Canada 2 November 2009, with "fall back" one hour giving sleepers one more hour of sleep!).

Cocco Paris LLC is is "a media distribution company based in Orange County, California. Our mission is to distribute Vietnamese media content and to ensure their accessibility. The plan to achieve these objectives begins with several initiatives of creating awareness about the film industries, and working closely with and engaging filmmakers and the community for innovative marketing solutions to bring the Vietnamese media content to the general mainstream audience.

"Further, the plan is to create an effective and efficient platform to reach a wider audience by including distribution of media content through different venues and other distribution channels worldwide."

The premiere Friday 6 November 2009, starting at 6 pm, at STAR
Performing Arts Center, 16149 Brookhurst St., Fountain Valley, CA
92708. is a benefit for two worthy causes: The Vietnamese American
Cancer Foundation and Project MotiVATe, which seeks to mentor
Vietnamese teenagers and motivate them to civic involvement. Regular screenings of Dust of Life continue November 7 at STAR Performing Arts Center. For more information, see:

The film runs 90 minutes, in English and Vietnamese with English subtitles. Le-Van Kiet did initial research for his film at the Southeast Asian Archive at UC Irvine Libraries.

Our earlier interview with Le-Van Kiet on Dust of Life is: here.

Dust of Life web site and trailer.

We also interviewed him on another feature of his, Sad Fish, which was featured at the 2009 Vietnamese International Film Festival at UCIrvine.
of that Subversity interview.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Historic Protest at UC Irvine

Video clip from OC Register.

Updated 3:15 PM 10/05/09: To listen to the 5 October 2009 Subversity show, click here: .

Irvine -- In our 5 October 2009 edition, KUCI's Subversity program looks back at the historic walkout rally and teach-ins at UCI on September 24, 2009, with Dennis Lopez and Raul Perez, from the Worker-Student Alliance at UC Irvine. We'll also play audio from the day's noon rally that drew hundreds in a show of unity among workers, students, faculty and staff.

Dennis Lopez, a graduate student in English, and Raul Perez, a graduate student in Sociology, have been major forces in bringing students and workers together to fight for in-sourcing and for social justice, and Lopez has been a guest on Subversity before.

The show airs 9-10 a.m. on KUCI, 88.9 FM and is simulcast via

Facebook page for WSA.

WSA Web site

New University coverage of rally

Student Newspapers' interview with
UC President Yudoff

Sunday, September 27, 2009

UC's Hidden Wealth: Why is UC Pleading Poverty?

Donohue points to UC's unrestricted assets at CUE event at UCI. Photo © Daniel C. Tsang 2009.

UPDATED 9/28/09 with audio link: To listen to the show, click here: .

Irvine -- It sure sounds like the University of California is in financial crisis, with layoffs, paycuts/furloughs, massive student fee increases and campus protests. But economist Peter Donohue thinks otherwise.

Looking at the UC's own financial reports, he has discovered billions hidden away in its unrestricted reserves. The UC likes to say these funds are already committed, but Donohue says these are not legally restricted. They could be freed up to offset the massive loss of state funding. But unlike the CSU system, UC funding is only 13% -18% dependent on state sources. On Subversity, we talk to Donohue about why the UC is pleading poverty.

Subversity airs Monday 28 September 2009 from 9-10 a.m. on KUCI, 88.9 FM in Orange County, California, and is simulcast via

Peter Donohue is an economist and head of San Francisco’s PBI Associates. Since 1982, he has assisted union, nonprofit, community and business groups with research, financial analysis, bargaining, arbitration and government relations. He advises clients in transport, construction, semiconductor, utility, printing, health care, retail, design, engineering, hospitality, transit, insurance, education and government. Donohue has taught at Portland State University, San Francisco State University, the University of California, Berkeley, the University of Texas at Austin and University of Missouri-Columbia.

He is currently compiling, for CUE (Coalition of University Employees), an updated analysis of the UC budget; see his earlier 1992 study: UC's Hidden Wealth: An Analysis of 10 Years of UC's Financial Reports.

See also Prof. Emeritus Charlie Schwartz's web site that tracks UC budget issues:

CUE's website, contains links to other resources, including our 20 July 2009 Subversity interview with CUE local president at UCI, Dianna Sahhar, and with Juan Castillo, union organizer with AFSCME local 3299.

Meanwhile, UC janitors are seeking to be in-sourced and represented by SEIU-United Service Workers West. A noon rally at UCI's flag pole is slated for October 2, 2009. 37 UCI janitors are under threat of layoff by cleaning contractor ABM. With workers laid off, UCI Labs are slated to be cleaned weekly only, but UCI offices only three times a year!

On the broadcast show, we also aired a clip from the 24 September 2009 rally at UCI of popular Sociology lecturer Chuck O'Connell talking about

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Activism -- UCI's Disorientation Week: First Disorientation Guide Debuts!; UPTE set to strike Thursday, 24 September! Faculty Plan Teach-ins

UPDATED 9/21/09 with audio link: To listen to the show, click here: .

Irvine -- As incoming UC Irvine students converge on campus this week as part of Orientation Week, they will encounter a UCI in turmoil Not only will their fees increase, UCI's faculty and staff are undergoing paycuts, furloughs and in some cases layoffs. Opposing the increasing privatization of the university are local activist groups who will be out in force this week, which starts off with an Anteater Involvement Fair on campus. And on Thursday, faculty plan walkouts and teach-ins, while the UPTE union stages a strike.

UCI's Radical Student Union is premiering a historic first, UCI's Disorientation Guide, aimed at uncovering what is not widely known about the institution, and seeking to provoke students and other readers into action. In its introduction, its anonymous authors state: "Between these covers, you have a guide into the belly of the University. Use it wisely. But don’t let this be your only map of this place, add your own experiences into the mix." It adds, cryptically: "Just remember what you don’t see is probably more interesting and important than what you do."

In the show's first half hour, we talk with members of the Disorientation Guide collective, about why they put out this first Disorientation Guide.

John Bruning is a second-year graduate student in Sociology, and a member of the Radical Student Union and the Disorientation Guide collective. John was first exposed to radical ideas after receiving a Disorientation Guide during Welcome Week as a freshman at the University of Wisconsin, and got involved in campus activism shortly thereafter.

Tim Brown is a second year grad student, studying the art of sound design. He previously lived in Oregon and and sought out the RSU after being immersed for too long in the terribleness that is the home territory of the New Majority.

The paper version of the Disorientation Guide will be distributed at the Radical Student Union table at the Anteater Involvement Fair on Monday, 21 September at UCI, and throughout the week on Ring Road. KUCI is cited in the first Guide as a "voice of freedom" while Subversity is mentioned as follows: "It's like Disorientation on the radio!"

See also other campus disorientation guides: UC Santa Cruz | UC Berkeley | NYU.

Moore on Subversity. © Daniel C. Tsang 2009

In our second hour, we talk with a union leader from UPTE, which will be on strike on September 24 university-wide, to call attention to the misplaced priorities of the current central administration, where administrative salaries have headed skyward even as the university claims it is in a budget crisis.

Michael Moore is UPTE's Leadership Development Coordinator for the past four years.
Active in the labor movement for 14 years, he has worked for various unions throughout the U.S., organizing and representing a cross section or workers. Originally from Georgia, he was mentored by Hose Williams, one of Dr Martin Luther King, Jr.'s organizers. His grandmother was one of the first presidents of the Newtown Florist Club, an environmental organization in his home town of Gainesville, Georgia.

The show airs Monday 21 September 2009 on KUCI, 88.9 FM in Orange County, Calif., and is simulcast via

For more on the hidden wealth within the UC's corporate structure, see UC Berkeley Prof. Emeritus Charlie Schwartz's latest analysis, posted at:

His analysis jibes with that of economist Peter Donohue, who last week held public sessions at UCI providing analysis with documentation on UC's hidden wealth. If the UC were really in an economic crisis, why would bond agencies increase UC's rating? Financial reports submitted by UC show clearly that millions are stashed away in the University's accounts, and are not legally restricted despite what the administration claims. The funds may be "committed" to some projects in some budget projections, but they are not legally restricted. See Donohue's earlier report

September 24, the first day of classes at UC Irvine, is also a day when faculty across the UCs plan to hold "walkouts" and teach-ins about the future of UC education. For more information, including flyers for a noon event at UCI's flagpole, see: Defend UCI.

See also: Remaking the University

And on Monday, 21 September, students protesting the closure of SAAS, which served first-generation, disabled and low-income students, plan to hold the first of two consecutive days of SAAS LOVE events at UCI, starting at 11 a.m. on Monday. See: Facebook page, SAAS Love.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

What's Different with Annie Le

by Tara Bui

If you hear the voice of Vivian Van Le on any other occasion, you will find yourself smitten by her vivaciousness and playful flirtation. But the past week has depleted her. At midnight in California, what was 3 a.m. in Connecticut, Le called me from the strangeness of her hotel room.

“My child is already dead,” she said.

This was hours after a press conference in which New Haven Assistant Police Chief Peter Reichard confirmed that the body of a female had been found wedged into a metal chase in the basement of 10 Amistad. The discovery, everyone feared, would now end the search for the missing Yale graduate student, Annie Le.

Spooked by the gruesomeness of the situation, and the utter deadness of her voice, I shook the weariness from my head and voiced the only thing that could be clung to.

“They still don’t know who it is 100% right?”


“Well, I know 99%.”


And so the story elevated to a higher level, and the press finally bothered to figure out that Annie Le had been of Vietnamese descent.
They took the real (her Western sounding name, Jewish post-grad fiancé, fancy Long Island wedding, and Ivy League medical student status), and spun it with embellishments.

Annie Le, it seemed, was a super-human who worked 12-hour days, spent ample time with friends, and still smiled constantly as she was, of course, the happiest girl in the world.

The term “American dream” was used as a myth spun around this young woman’s image. But all this spinning kept the story afloat. It kept the woman at the center looking like a model minority, and for whatever reason Asians who work hard and never have issues are endlessly commendable.

But the fact that Annie was raised by a PhD aunt in Placerville while she had a mother who was alive and well in Orange County may have been one minor inconsistency in the dream façade. And the fact that her first wedding celebration was not at a New York banquet hall, but at Emerald Bay, a Chinese-Vietnamese restaurant, was another. The restaurant, for those who don’t know, is the center for many anti-communist fundraisers and gatherings in Orange County’s Little Saigon. Its doors are secured with duct tape, but it is named after one of the most expensive real estate nooks in affluent Laguna Beach. Le’s August 8th reception was most likely loud, with balloons, a Vietnamese MC, and a bottle of Courvoisier at every table.

But the similarities were sidelined as the differences made Annie’s story more worthy of reporting. Perhaps many Vietnamese women thought, “Who would care if that happened to me? My name is hard to pronounce, and I clean nails for a living. I’m nobody.” It is a most legitimate fear. It is what makes Annie’s story so intriguing and frightening to us all.


They try to place Annie Le in the same category as Jennifer Wilbanks and Laci Peterson. But they conveniently overlook the fact that within 24 hours of her reported disappearance; a reported $60,000 dollars worth of city and state funds were used to implement on-foot searches for Wilbanks. $25,000 dollars was what the Board of Trustees at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill offered last spring for information leading to the arrest of their slain student, Eve Carson. In the Peterson case, she was last seen alive in December 2002, friends and law enforcement spanned out to search for her, and her body was found almost four months later; in the meantime, a $500,000 reward was offered for her safe return

And what about Yale? Well, in November 2007, the Office of the State’s Attorney in New Haven sent out a press release announcing that the State of Connecticut and Yale University were pooling together a $150,000 dollar reward for information leading to an arrest in the case of Suzanne Jovin, a Caucasian student who was found stabbed to death on campus in 1998. Of the $150,000 lump sum, Yale contributed $100,000 dollars. That alone has caused some family friends of Annie Le’s to wonder whether the $10,000 reward money offered in her case was actually scrapped together by desperate relatives.

Many eyebrows have risen as to why it took 5 days to find Annie’s body, when cadaver dogs and over 100 law enforcement officials were supposedly searching the 21,000 sq. ft lab. Police have tried to deter questions by stating that the lab was not of focused interest during the first 48 hours because they still believed that this was another “runaway bride” case.

The sexism of that claim is apparent; Women are self-centered, play games, and should not be taken too seriously. But even that has never stopped a sense of urgency before. In the first days of her disappearance, Le did not get as much air time as Peterson or Wilbanks .

So perhaps her story is more common to that of Eridania Rodriguez, a Manhattan cleaning lady who was brutalized and stuffed into an air conditioning vent by an elevator worker of the building she worked at. Surveillance cameras caught images of her working in the building, but never leaving. Her hair clip and cleaning cart were found in a hallway, and her purse was in her locker. Still, the search did not intensify on the building until 4 days later, when missing ceiling tiles and a foul odor lead to the discovery of a decomposing body. The office, like 10 Amistad, was still in use until blood was found dripping from the ventilation system.

Like Rodriguez, authorities did not launch on-foot searches as they did for Peterson and Wilbanks. Family and family friends also feared, particularly in the beginning, that the case would be mentioned in passing and then simply dropped unless tragic revelations soon occurred.

Take, for instance, the case of Kate Sue Yi, a California State University Long Beach nursing student who was found dead in her campus apartment in April 2009. Evidence led to the arrest of her unremarkable Vietnamese boyfriend, but updates on the case have not been reported on since that week.

In Irvine, California, the deceased and burned body of an unidentified African American woman was found in the parking lot of a closed business on September 5, 2009. The woman was also in her early 20’s, though the case has not been brought up much since September 10th.

The saddest part is that no amount of urgency or media frenzy could have turned this case from a homicide back to missing persons. However, changing the way we tackle cases of missing people of color – particularly women – could have significant effect on the way their lives are valued before and after they are met with potential violence.

Annie Le’s death is a personal tragedy for those who knew and loved her. For minority women, it is a blinding reminder that we must personify our double consciousness as a mode of survival. For many ambitious Asian American parents, it is a chance to sit their children down and say, “See? Become a doctor and marry a doctor. Don't make trouble, and you will gain social value.” Of course, the underlying issue here is whether or not we want that to be the bottom line.

Tara Bui is a writer on media & ethnic studies. She is based in Southern California. Write her at: .

Monday, September 14, 2009

First homicide on UC Irvine Campus

UPDATED (12:39 pm 14 September 2009): The victim in the UCI shooting has been identified as Rebecca Benedict; the trigger appears to be a doubling of child support a judge imposed on the suspect. See OC Register report.

Earlier entry:

The City of Irvine often touts itself one of America's safest cities. That may have been true, but no more. Even as college students across the country are shocked at what is believed to be the death of Annie Le, a Vietnamese American pharmacology graduate student at Yale, whose suspected body was discovered Sunday, a tragedy also happened closer to home for those in Orange County.

Last night (13 September 2009) a 30 year-old woman was killed in the parking lot at University of California, Irvine's Verano graduate housing on campus, the suspect a physics graduate student.

And earlier this month, the body of an unidentified black woman, in her 20s, was found after she was burned, in another parking lot, in an Irvine business area. See Irvine Police Department's request for help in identifying the victim. The Irvine PD press release calls Irvine "one of America's safest and most successful master-planned urban communities."

The suspect in the campus shooting death last night is, according to a report in the Orange County Register, Brian Hughes Benedict, 35, a graduate student. Benedict has been arrested and is being held on $1 million bail in Orange County Jail. He is listed as a resident of 4122 Verano Place, according to voting records, the OC Register reported. Apparently, Benedict was in a relationship with the unidentified victim; a 4-year-old child was also in the vicinity according to the report. An early Los Angeles Times story does not offer much detail.

UC Irvine records give his hometown as El Segundo, and his "major" as Physics.

In the meantime, in the Annie Le murder case, another Yalie who failed lie detector tests appears now to be a suspect, according to a news report in the New York Daily News.

Rest in Peace: Annie Le, and the two as yet unidentified Irvine victims.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Subversity Exclusive: UCI Undergraduate Dean Sharon Salinger on SAAS Closure

Photo © 2009 Daniel C. Tsang

On the 14 September 2009 Subversity Show, at 9 am on KUCI, 88.9 fm and simulcast via, we air our exclusive interview with Sharon V. Salinger, Dean of Undergraduate Education at the University of California. Under fire for closing an important unit on campus, SAAS (Student Academic Advancement Services), which served first-generation, low-income and disabled students, Salinger says it was budget cuts that led to the closure and layoffs of five staff members, including the SAAS director. The U.S. Department of Education recently renewed funding to UCI for the same services provided to SAAS, which closed August 31, 2009. A faculty member, with two academic advisors, will constitute the new team. The new federal grant provides more student financial aid as well as additional funding for student advisors. Salinger is hoping former SAAS student peer advisors will continue to work in the new restructured unit. Salinger is interviewed by show host Daniel C. Tsang.

SAAS supporters, meanwhile, have organized a "SAAS Love" sit-in slated for Monday 21 September 2009 and the next day from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. outside the old SAAS offices. Salinger says she may bring pizza. A facebook event page has been set up: SAAS Love. The original Save SAAS at UCI Now! Facebook page continues. A video from SAAS supporters is posted here: video. OC Weekly recently covered the SAAS closure: Navel Gazing blog

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Is it final? SAAS Closure: Dean sends out statement

The official word of closure from UCI Division of Undergraduate Education Sharon Salinger, emailed to "UCI Campus Community" 24 August 2009 at 6:01 pm:

Dear Colleagues, Students and Community Partners,

As a result of the unprecedented fiscal crisis facing the University
of California and the resulting permanent budget cut of 16 percent
allocated to UC Irvine Division of Undergraduate Education, a decision
was made to close Student Academic Advancement Services effective Aug.
31, 2009. Services offered by this unit including study skills
workshops, academic counseling, career planning, and tutoring will
continue under the direction of the dean of undergraduate education.

Funded in part by a grant from the US Department of Education, SAAS
programs are designed to increase retention and graduation rates of
first-generation, low-income students. Among these programs, Freshman
Summer Bridge is the most visible and engenders the most comment from
past participants for its critical role in their success at UCI and
for its lasting impact.

To minimize the effects of this closure on students, DUE plans to
partner with existing units across campus to continue services
formerly offered by the program. This restructuring plan is based upon
recommendations from an outside review team that visited UCI in spring
2008. It includes the appointment of a faculty member committed to
working with first-generation, low-income students who will be
responsible for academic oversight of Summer Bridge and other
workshops and classes. DUE will continue to partner with Summer
Session on administration and co-curricular activities for the Summer
Bridge programs. Further, if the U.S. Department of Education renews
its partnership with DUE, the restructuring will allow the
continuation of the two-unit course on Graduate Education as well as
this year's pilot program for a Transfer Summer Bridge. Moreover,
the continued partnership will result in a 62 percent increase in
Summer Bridge financial aid available annually.

DUE intends to continue to provide physical space as well as
professional staff and a peer mentor team devoted to student support.
Additionally, the Learning and Academic Resources Center within the
DUE will offer tutoring and study skills workshops for eligible
students. Watch for future announcements on the DUE website as we make
this transition.

Along with many colleagues, past and current students, and community
partners, we extend to the SAAS staff our thanks for their years of
service and their dedication to the programs: Joe Maestas, director;
Audrey Al-Hamd, associate director; Stephen Domingues, coordinator,
Summer Bridge and program development; Angelita Salas, counselor; and
Ashley Melton, administrative assistant.

The unit's closure is a regrettable consequence of these budgetary
times. DUE is confident that students still will receive excellent
support through vibrant programs and the commitment of professional
staff and faculty.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

UCI Seeks Input on Different Set of Furlough Closure Days

Late Wednesday (6 August 2009), UCI administration announced in a campus email that it is seeking input on a different draft proposal to close the campus during 7 furlough days. In contrast, a faculty proposal seeks furlough day closures on a different set of 10 days. The draft proposal for which UCI Chancellor Michael Drake and Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Michael Gottfredson are seeking feedback is as follows:
  • Close campus Dec. 21, 2009-Jan. 1, 2010: This would extend our standard holiday closure practice by three-days. Dec. 24, 25, 31 and Jan. 1 would remain university holidays; the six remaining days (Dec. 21-23 and 28-30) would not be paid holidays, and eligible employees would be encouraged to take them as furlough days.
  • Close campus March 25, 2010: This precedes the March 26 Cesar Chavez holiday, creating a four-day weekend. Again, eligible employees would be encouraged to take March 25 as a furlough day.
In fact, as listeners to KUCI Subversity's 20 July 2009 show already have discovered, the University has told one union (CUE) at the bargaining table that these furlough days are in fact paid holidays. This is no doubt because affected employees will be having their pay cut monthly anyway, so if their furloughs are also to result in more reduction in pay, that would be placing them in double jeopardy!

In any case, the University does not want to hear from UCI union members, who instead are directed in the mass email to send any feedback to their own union representatives.

Both Drake and Gottfredson will answer questions at a Budget Town Hall noon-1 p.m. Thursday, 6 August 2009, in UCI's Student Center, Pacific Ballrooms C and D.

UCI Faculty Seek Campus Closures on Furlough Days

The governing body of the UCI Academic Senate has endorsed a UCSC faculty plan to make the pain from UC paycuts and furloughs visible. The faculty senate cabinet is recommending closing the UCI campus on these dates, according to a 28 July 2009 letter from UCI Prof. Jukka Heckhausen, who chairs the UCI Academic Senate, to Prof. Mary Croughan, who chairs the UC system-wide Academic Senate:

Fall quarter
  • September 21
  • November 23,24,25 (Thanksgiving Week)

Winter quarter

  • January 4, 5 (delay start of winter quarter)
  • February 12

Spring quarter

  • March 29, 30 (delay start of spring quarter)
  • May 28
The letter asserts: "A majority of the Cabinet felt that the plan makes the consequences of the budget cuts and furloughs visible to the public, the Legislature, and the Regents while at the same time limiting the negative impact on instruction." At least 74 UCI faculty members signed a petition recommending this route.

No word yet on whether this would go into effect or not.

Of course, unionized UC workers are not (as yet) subject to the pay cut and furlough plan, so how this would work with just faculty not showing is anybody's guess. UC has yet to seriously begin negotiating with campus unions on this matter.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Executives Get Raises at the UC

According to a 23 July 2009 UPTE press release, senior administrators as well as executives of the University of California have received compensation increases despite the financial crisis and plans to lay off and cut the pay of up to 160,000 UC faculty and staff.

At UC Irvine for example, the press release includes this: "Terry Belmont, appointed to a one year position as Acting Associate Vice Chancellor for Medical Center Affairs and Chief Executive Officer, UC Irvine Medical Center, at an annual salary of $659,000, an increase of 22% over the salary of former UC Irvine Medical Center CEO Maureen Zehntner who's [sic] 2008 annual salary was $538,000."

These figures are sure to come up as the University begins negotiations with unions on the UC pay cut and furlough plan, already imposed on other, non-unionized workers (except those paid fully by grants).

The executive compensation approvals raises the question whether top UC administrators are oblivious to, or don't care about legislative or public reaction, and can only spur on legislative attempts to take away UC's autonomy.

The text of the UPTE press release follows:

As the Board of Regents voted last week to furlough UC faculty and staff amid the biggest protests they’ve seen in years, they also quietly approved dozens of compensation increases and perks to top executives and administrators. Several executives were appointed at salaries from 11% to 59% higher than their predecessors. The regents also voted to give “administrative stipends” ranging from $24,000 to $58,625 to several employees, without any extra duties, and added several new highly paid executive positions. “These are outrageous actions, taken at the same time as UC has been pleading poverty, forcing staff and faculty to take furloughs, and hinting at more student fee increases,” said Jelger Kalmijn, a staff research associate and president of University Professional and Technical Employees (CWA-9119), which represents 12,000 researchers, tech staff and health care professionals at UC systemwide. “UC President Mark Yudof keeps saying we all have to ‘share the pain,’ but it is obvious that many administrators will not be feeling the pinch,” he added. Minutes from the July 16 regents’ meeting bring the total number of compensation increases, new hiring and perks to top administrators to over 40 in 2009 (see below). “Despite the regents’ claim in January of a ‘freeze’ on executive pay increases, they've doled out bonuses and perks at each of their meetings in February, March, May and July,” added Kalmijn. “And despite layoffs and hiring freezes at many campuses, they continue to hire and create positions for highly-paid administrators.” “If there really is a ‘financial crisis’ at UC, why do they have all this money for top administrators?” asked Tanya Smith, a Berkeley editor and UPTE’s local president there. “UC is sitting on billions in reserve funds and is expecting hundreds of millions more from fundraising, the profit-making UC medical centers and the federal stimulus bill, but claims that it needs to cut employee pay and raise student fees to cover a small state budget shortfall of less than 3%.” “Sometimes the regents do things we applaud heartily such as last week’s decision to fund Cal Grants,” continued Smith. “But how were they able to come up with the $120 million to do that? It's time for the regents to open the books. We need to know if there really is a budget crisis at UC or just a crisis of leadership.”

Executive hires, raises, perks approved by UC Regents in the July 16, 2009 Interim Actions Source:

Shelia Antrum, Chief Nursing and Patient Care Services Officer, UCSF Medical Center received a $37,500 “administrative stipend” to increase salary from $250,000 to $287,500. Stipend awarded even though no additional administrative duties were specified. Kenneth M. Jones, Interim Chief Operating Officer, UCSF Medical Center received a $30,563 “administrative stipend” to increase salary from $470,200 to $500,763. Stipend awarded even though no additional administrative duties were specified. Additionally, Jones is eligible for a bonus of up to $117,550 and will be awarded a 5% retirement contribution to the Senior Management Supplemental Benefit program. Susan Moore, Interim Chief Financial Officer, UCSF Medical Center received a $58,625 “administrative stipend” to increase salary from $234,500 to $293,125. Stipend awarded even though no additional administrative duties were specified. Additionally, Moore is eligible for a bonus of up to $58,625 and will be awarded a 5% retirement contribution to the Senior Management Supplemental Benefit program. John R. Sandbrook, Chief of Staff, Office of the President, received a $24,000 “administrative stipend” added to his $200,000 salary. The stipend covers duties related to the transition of newly hired chancellors and other senior management personnel. Additionally, Sandbrook will continue Regent-approved reimbursements for temporary housing (up to $3,500 per month) and weekly round trip coach airfare (estimated at approximately $1,200 per month) and reimbursement of ground transportation/rental car. Teri Schwartz appointed as Dean – School of Theater, Film, and Television, Los Angeles Campus at a salary of $325,000, a $121,100 or 59.4% increase over her predecessor, Robert Rosen who's 2008 salary was $203,800. Additionally, Schwartz is eligibility to participate in the university low interest mortgage program up to the current maximum loan amount $1.33M. Peter A. Hayashida appointed as Vice Chancellor – University Advancement, Riverside Campus at a salary of $265,000, a $30,000 or 11% increase over the salary of his predecessor Daniel G. Aldrich, III, whose base pay was $235,000 in 2008. Additional compensation includes an annual automobile allowance of $8,916, participation in the university low interest mortgage program, 100 percent reimbursement of relocation expenses and a 5% retirement contribution to the Senior Management Supplemental Benefit Program. George Mangun, Dean – Division of Social Sciences, Davis Campus. The interim position is “reslotted” to accommodate a salary of $278,500, a $31,901 or 11% increase over his previous Dean's salary of $246,599. Note: In July of 2008 (see link below) the Regents approved Mangun's initial appointment as Acting Dean with a salary $246,599 (and an additional stipend of $28,401 for his position in the school of medicine). But the salary range for the Deanship at that time (maximum $265,000) could not accommodate his total pay. 0for%20web.pdf Mark Yudof, UC President awarded $3,548 to cover costs of shipping vehicles from Austin Texas. This is in addition to Yudof's annual car allowance of $8,916. Note: in April of 2008 Yudof received a relocation award of $147,000 which was redirected to his supplemental retirement benefit. Creation of a Chief Quality Officer, UCSF Medical Center position with a salary range from a minimum of $267,700 to a maximum of $420,100. Creation of a Vice Chancellor – Research position at UCSF Campus with a salary range from a minimum of $239,700 to a maximum of $374,500. The position is to be included in the Senior Management Group and will include a 5% retirement contribution to the Senior Management Supplemental Benefit program. Pierre Wiltzius, Susan and Bruce Worster Dean of Science, Division of Mathematical, Life, and Physical Sciences, College of Letters and Science, Santa Barbara Campus. Awarded an additional $7,000 in moving expenses to make his compensation for moving $17,000 moving expenses, a $63,750 lump sum relocation allowance and a $2,500 house hunting trip, in addition to a salary of $255,000 and eligibility in the university low interest mortgage program.

Andrew Policano – Dean – Paul Merage School of Business, Irvine Campus. Position is reslotted to allow a maximum salary of $374,500. Max Reynolds interim appointment as Deputy General Council, Office of the President receiving an administrative stipend of $44,795 to increase salary from $205,205 to $250,000 Jeffrey Blair appointed as Deputy General Council, Office of the President at a salary of $250,000. According to 2008 payroll information Blair's salary was $168,087 so this amount represents a $81,913 increase. Additional compensation includes participation in the university low interest mortgage program and a 5% retirement contribution to the Senior Management Supplemental Benefit Program. David Birnbaum appointed as Deputy General Council, Office of the President at a salary of $250,000. According to 2008 payroll information Birnbaum's salary was $170,489 so this amount represents a $79,511 increase. Additional compensation includes participation in the university low interest mortgage program and a 5% retirement contribution to the Senior Management Supplemental Benefit Program. Chief Financial Officer – Medical Center, San Diego position is reslotted a higher salary range with a minimum of $239,700, maximum salary of $374,500. Position is currently held by Robert Hogan whose 2008 base salary was $253,181.

Other Regents approved compensation increases during 2009
Executive hires, raises, perks approved by UC Regents on May 7th, 2009

Dwaine Duckett appointed as Vice President-Human Resources, Office of the President, at an Annual salary of $300,000. Compensation includes relocation allowance of $75,000, auto allowance, low interest mortgage, and 5% monthly contribution to the Senior Management Supplemental Benefit Program. Susan D. Desmond-Hellmann, M.D., M.P.H. appointed as Chancellor, UC San Francisco at an annual salary of $450,000, an increase of 12% above that of predecessor J. Michael Bishop. Compensation includes housing, auto allowance, low interest mortgage after stepping down. Linda P. B. Katehi appointed as Chancellor, UC Davis at annual salary of $400,000, an increase of 27% percent above that of predecessor Larry N. Vanderhoef. Compensation includes relocation allowance of $100,000, housing, auto allowance, low interest mortgage after stepping down. J. Michael Bishop, outgoing Chancellor and Professor above Scale, UC San Francisco, approval of emeritus status and continuation of administrative salary of $402,200 while he is on paid administrative leave. Includes moving expenses estimated at $10,000. Larry N. Vanderhoef, outgoing Chancellor and Professor above Scale, UC Davis, approval of emeritus status and continuation of administrative salary of $315,000 per annum while on paid administrative leave. Includes moving expenses estimated at $7,500. Vice Chancellor - Development University, Advancement and Planning , at UCSF, position will be included in the Senior Management Group (SMG). Formerly the position of Associate Vice Chancellor - Development, held by James Asp who's 2008 salary was $182,000. The new position contains a minimum salary of $239,700, maximum salary of $374,500 and includes an additional university 5% contribution to the SMG Supplemental Benefit Program. Terry Belmont, appointed to a one year position as Acting Associate Vice Chancellor for Medical Center Affairs and Chief Executive Officer, UC Irvine Medical Center, at an annual salary of $659,000, an increase of 22% over the salary of former UC Irvine Medical Center CEO Maureen Zehntner who's 2008 annual salary was $538,000. Rebekah G. Gladson, Associate Vice Chancellor – Design and Construction Services/Campus Architect, UC Irvine. Position is reslotted to allow a maximum salary of $236,100. Daniel W. Park, Chief Campus Counsel and Associate General Counsel, UC San Diego Campus. Awarded a 13% retention increase of $27,500 to increase salary from $207,500 to $235,000.

Steven C. Currall, appointed as Dean-Graduate School of Management, UC Davis, at an annual salary of $365,000 an increase of 33% over the salary of predecessor Nicole Biggart who's 2008 annual salary was $281,000. Additionally, position is reslotted to allow a maximum salary of $374,500.

Executive hires, raises, perks approved by UC Regents on March 19th, 2009

John Gary Falle, Associate Vice President – Federal Government Relations, UCOP, interim re-slotting and appointment, 10.4 percent increase in base salary bringing annual base salary from $244,500 to $270,000. Samuel Hawgood, Acting Dean – School of Medicine, UCSF, continuation of the existing annual administrative stipend of $181,425 (94 percent) to maintain current faculty base salary of $192,300 and his Health Sciences Compensation Plan (HSCP) pay of $195,475 to an annual salary of $569,200 J. Michael Bishop, Professor above Scale, UCSF, approval of emeritus status and continuation of administrative salary of $402,200 while he is on paid administrative leave, in lieu of sabbatical leave Larry N. Vanderhoef, Professor above Scale, UCD, approval of emeritus status and continuation of administrative salary of $315,000 per annum while on paid administrative leave, in lieu of sabbatical leave and an Executive Assistant ($91,000 not including benefits) J. Nicholas Entrikin , Vice Provost – International Studies, UCLA, term appointment salary and interim re- slotting increases of salary and stipend of $253,800 from $230,694, after July 1, 2009 John Meyer was promoted and re-slotted as Vice Chancellor –Resource Management and Planning at UCD. His salary went from $200,200 to $244,900 (+22.3%), but he forfeited the raise for at least a year. Henry Brady, Dean of the School of Public Policy, received a 15% salary increase when he was appointed Dean, from $246,000 to $283,000. The position of Dean is re-slotted to accommodate his higher salary. Peter J. Taylor, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, UCOP, new position with a base salary of $400,000 Daniel M. Dooley As Senior Vice President – External Relations, UCOP, approval of appointment salary of $370,000, same salary in his interim role. Interim Slotting for Vice Provost – Education Partnerships, UCOP, (currently vacant) $192,300- $297,400

Executive hires, raises, perks approved by UC Regents on February 5th, 2009

S. Shankar Sastry received a $25,000 bonus "stipend" as the Faculty Director of the Richard Blum Center in Berkeley to move his salary to $300,000 Jennifer Wolch, Dean of College of Environmental Design, received a $25,000 increase over predecessor when salary mid-point for the position was "re-slotted" from $218,000 to $244,900, and is eligible for a loan up to $1.33M through the University of California Mortgage Origination Program Paul Staton, Chief Financial Officer – UCLA Hospital System, interim re-slotting and pre-emptive retention increase of $69,200 (22.3%), increasing base salary from $310,800 to $380,000, and a potential bonus of 25 percent ($95,000). Marsha Kelman, Associate Vice President – Policy and Analysis, UCOP, appointment for slotting of the new Senior Management Group position with a base salary of $248,000 Lawrence H. Pitts, Interim Provost and Executive Vice President – Academic Affairs, UCOP, appointment with compensation for base salary of $350,000

Christopher Edley Jr., awarded a $43,000 administrative stipend as Special Advisor to President Mark Yudof to bring total salary to $350,000. Harold Levine, Associate Provost for Education Initiatives, Office of the President, awarded a $35,820 stipend to bring total salary to $214,920. Mary Lynn Tierney, appointed as Associate Vice President – Communications, Office of the President with an annual salary of $239,000. Additional compensation includes a temporary housing allowance of up to $15,000, 100% of relocation expenses, participation in the university low interest mortgage program and a 5% retirement contribution to the Senior Management Supplemental Benefit Program. Tina Combs, appointed as Deputy General Council, Office of the President at an annual salary of $244,000. Additional compensation includes participation in the university low interest mortgage program and a 5% retirement contribution to the Senior Management Supplemental Benefit Program.

Explanation of terms:

“Slotting” refers to setting salary ranges for a position. “Re-slotting” refers changing the salary ranges of the position, not to the individual. “Stipends” are additional pay usually awarded to faculty who take on additional administrative duties. “Interim” means changes are not permanent.

Monday, July 20, 2009

UCI Town Hall Meeting on University of California Pay Cuts and Furloughs

UCI Chancellor Michael Drake defends the plan to cut wages and furlough workers and engages in Q and A with staff members (audiofile linked above). Drake did not tell those assembled that UC campus Senates opposed the plan. Hear union reps talk about the plan and the town hall meeting here on Subversity's 20 July 2009 show:

More information

News flash: Because the plans call for monthly pay cuts, the furloughs when taken will not entail further cuts, and thus will be recorded as "paid" leave. The University had previously announced that furlough days will be banked like vacation days (for those who have them).