Editorial: Our picks for University of Michigan Board of Regents
For a guide to The Detroit News endorsements in all races so far, click here.
Editor's note: Michigan’s Constitution calls for statewide elections of the independent boards governing the state’s three major universities. Every two years, two of the positions on each eight-member board are up for election, and candidates are selected at state party conventions. Members serve eight-year terms, The university boards govern finances and hire presidents, among other important oversight tasks.
The University of Michigan is facing its own serious sexual assault scandal. Dr. Robert Anderson, who died in 2008, allegedly abused dozens of students when employed by the university over the course of decades.
The university has also struggled to meet constitutional obligations of free speech and due process for all students, which has resulted in several lawsuits.
We think UM would benefit from a more politically balanced board as the university deals with these serious matters. Currently, board chair Ron Weiser is the lone GOP member.
Republican Sarah Hubbard of Lansing is a small business owner with a wealth of experience in government relations and public policy. She says she wants to restore “robust discourse of ideas and viewpoints” on the board, and she is committed to free speech policies in the classroom and around campus. Tuition affordability is also a top goal, and Hubbard believes the university should safely get back to in-person learning.
Carl Meyers, a Republican from Dearborn, is similarly running on a platform of affordability and fiscal restraint. As a financial adviser, Meyers brings a host of good ideas around reining in spending. He’d also like to see the university adopt caps on the number of out-of-state students at the Ann Arbor campus, to allow more Michigan students the opportunity to attend the university.
Democrats Mark Bernstein of Ann Arbor and Shauna Ryder Diggs of Detroit are both seeking second terms. Bernstein, an attorney, clearly works hard in his role, and takes the responsibility seriously. But we’re concerned with his recent efforts to encourage union organizing on campus.
Ryder Diggs, a dermatologist, did not respond to our questionnaire or requests for an interview.
We recommend voters choose Sarah Hubbard and Carl Meyers to best address the concerns facing UM.
Endorsements are determined independently by The Detroit News Editorial Board and have no influence on news coverage.