Thursday’s landmark Supreme Court ruling on healthcare has pretty much blown out of the water any other news this week. But we shouldn’t let that allow us to forget the astonishing turmoil at the University of Virginia during most of June, or the leading role Heywood Fralin of Roanoke took in resolving the crisis.
Just a little background:
Led by Rector Helen Dragas of Virginia Beach, a small cabal on the University of Virginia’s Board of Visitors on June 8 engineered the forced resignation of popular UVa President Teresa Sullivan, who’d had less than two years in the post.
Because the move caught almost everyone off guard, and the full board had not met on the issue, and there was hardly any explanation, it has become known around Virginia as the great Hoo d’etat of 2012.
In Charlottesville, it caused more than two weeks of demonstrations by dismayed students and faculty, and a torrent of harsh criticism aimed at one of America’s most highly regarded public universities.
Most of that ended Tuesday, when the board unanimously reversed course and reinstated Sullivan.
Riding to her rescue was none other than Fralin, 72, one of 17 appointees to the Board of Visitors. He’s a UVa alum (1962), a former board rector and vice rector. (He’s not the only Roanoke native on the board — UVa alum Robert Hardie, who grew up in the Williamson Road corridor, serves as well).
READ THE REST OF THIS COLUMN HERE.