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Harvard Board Member Resigns

Harvard Board Member Resigns

The decision by Harvard to grant a three percent raise to its controversial president, Lawrence H. Summers ’75, was the final straw that led to the resignation of the only African-American member of the university’s governing board, according to a resignation letter released yesterday by the university.

The board member, Conrad K. Harper, also said in the letter that he had argued months ago that Summers should resign, and that he still felt that way.

“I believe that Harvard’s best interests require your resignation,” Mr. Harper wrote in the letter to Summers dated July 14. He noted in the letter that Summers had insulted people attending a Native American conference, alienated black professors and suggested that women might not have an “intrinsic” aptitude for science and engineering.

“I saw a pattern,” Mr. Conrad wrote. “Your statements demeaned those who are underrepresented at the top levels of major research universities.”

—Alan Finder, The New York Times