University of California President Mark Yudof on Wednesday repeated his support for UC Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi following the release of reports on the Nov. 18 pepper-spraying of protesters on campus.
“Whatever mistakes were made, Chancellor Katehi has stepped up and taken full responsibility,” Yudof said during his opening remarks at the UC Board of Regents meeting in Sacramento. “She has continued to set in motion corrective steps to ensure that these mistakes do not re-occur.
“And I have full, unequivocal confidence in her ability to lead UC Davis, not only out of this episode, but also on its trajectory to greater heights. Davis is already among the world’s leading research universities — but it will continue to rise even higher under Chancellor Katehi’s leadership.”
Yudof’s comments were his first since the Executive Council of the UC Davis Academic Senate voted to censure Katehi for her actions related to Nov. 18.
Reports from Kroll Associates Inc., a consulting firm, and a task force headed by former California Supreme Court Justice Cruz Reynoso blamed the administration and the police for mistakes that led to about dozen protesters being pepper-sprayed and 10 more arrested.
Yudof had been scheduled to appear before a joint legislative oversight committee hearing on Tuesday, but was unable to attend because of a family emergency. Provost Lawrence Pitts appeared in his place.
Reading from Yudof’s planned testimony, Pitts said UC’s chancellors will be asked to evaluate the recently released systemwide report on the policing of protests, authored by UC general counsel Charles Robinson and Christopher Edley, dean of the UC Berkeley School of Law, and take actions accordingly.
“I will consider seriously each of these recommendations for systemwide action and then work with the chancellors to move forward as a unified system,” Pitts read, adding, “In the end, the president is ultimately responsible for making sure that we, as a system, do all we can to get this right.”
Robinson and Edley’s report is available for public review along with other reports related to Nov. 18 at http://demonstrationreviews.ucdavis.edu. A UC spokesperson said the period set aside for public review may be extended.
— Reach Cory Golden at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @cory_golden