UofL board praises president’s performance at annual retreat


    PADUCAH, Ky. – The University of Louisville Board of Trustees today reviewed the performance of President James Ramsey and discussed the importance of UofL’s mission to western Kentucky at the board’s annual retreat in Paducah.

    The board heaped praise on Ramsey and recommended a two percent salary increase, the same average raise that faculty and staff are receiving this year. However, the president said he would not accept the raise.

    Board of Trustees Chair Robert Hughes said, “We want to recognize Jim for truly extraordinary work. His leadership has transformed UofL into one of the most dynamic universities in the country in terms of academic, research and athletic improvement and achievement.”

    Because Ramsey achieved all but two of the goals set for the president’s office, board members recommended that the UofL Foundation approve a bonus equal to 25 percent of his annual salary in accordance with his Jan. 1, 2012 contract. The Foundation will consider the recommendation at a July 18 meeting.

    Hughes said Ramsey has given nearly $1 million back to the university in the form of outright donations and by giving up bonuses and pay raises.

    Ramsey was appointed president in 2002. During his tenure, the university has boosted its graduation rate by more than 60 percent, admitted freshmen classes that are more academically gifted each year, recognized more Fulbright scholars than any other Kentucky institution, doubled the number of students living on campus, advanced its research mission and completed a $1 billion dollar capital campaign, despite multiple budget cuts.

    Ramsey’s annual salary at June 30, 2014, was $624,000 and included $342,930 in university funds plus $281,070 from the privately funded UofL Foundation.

    In other business, the board discussed the progress of the 21st Century University Initiative; were given an overview of the university’s affiliated corporations; and talked about ways to prioritize goals.

    Also, a panel of Paducah community leaders spoke to board members and commended university officials for making a positive impact on students and health care in western Kentucky.

    “UofL really is a beacon for us here in Paducah” said William Brown, President of Baptist Health Paducah.

    Mark Hebert
    Following a 28-year career as a radio and television reporter, Mark Hebert joined the University of Louisville as the Director of Media Relations in 2009, serving as the main spokesperson. In 2015, Mark was named Director of Programming and Production. He’s now producing and hosting a radio show about “all things UofL”, overseeing the university’s video and TV productions and promoting UofL’s research operation. Mark is best known for his 22 years as the political and investigative reporter for WHAS-TV in Louisville where he won numerous awards for breaking stories, exposing corruption and objectively covering Kentucky politics. In 2014, Mark was inducted into the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame.