GW still is entertaining the idea of offering Washington D.C. Mayor Marion Barry a professorship, despite the Consortium of Universities’ decision Tuesday not to sponsor him for the position, The Washington Post reported.
The consortium, an affiliation of 12 area universities and colleges, said its bylaws gave it “no mechanism” to appoint a professor. Individual universities must make such hiring choices.
“The only way institutions can deal with this is on an individual basis, through their own facilities,” consortium President Monte Shepler told The Post Wednesday.
GW President Stephen Joel Trachtenberg said he was disappointed the consortium rejected the idea on “technical” grounds.
“They never got to the substance of it,” he said.
Trachtenberg said Barry supporters approached him with the idea of offering the mayor a teaching post in the consortium after he leaves office.
Trachtenberg said the offer was not being used as a tool to urge Barry to leave office.
“My intent is to express the possibility of an alternative to the mayor – should he be interested in it,” he said.
But Trachtenberg said the mayor has not yet expressed interest in the idea, nor has the offer been officially considered by the University.
Trachtenberg said he will not approach Barry about the scenario. He said he only will consider the option if he is approached again.
Sources at some universities in the consortium said they may join together to offer Barry a position, which could cost as much as $2 million over 10 years, according to The Post.
Trachtenberg said he is not concerned that bad publicity could surround a Barry appointment to the GW faculty.
“The only group I’d be concerned with is whether the faculty thought he could bring something to the University,” he said.
Barry’s office did not respond to a request for comment.