To: The Whittier College Board of Trustees
From: Ronene Ettinger Anderson ’85 and the Ettinger Family
Re: Suspension of Trustees Chris Cross & Barbara Groce
My name is Ronene Ettinger Anderson, and I am a member of the class of 1985. My sister Jean Ettinger and my brother James Ettinger are also graduates of Whittier College. My youngest brother Matthew attended Whittier for a couple of years before pursuing other interests. Both of our parents served on the Board of Trustees of Whittier College and were generous supporters of the college.
I am writing this letter on behalf of my family after having discussions about the board’s recent decision to suspend Mr. Chris Cross and Mrs. Barbara Groce. A move that you are all aware has no procedural basis or by-law to support. The behavior of this board exposes Whittier College to potential legal action and certainly does not follow their code of conduct. We do not understand the board’s lack of respect towards Mr. Cross and Mrs. Groce. We are disconcerted the board would reject the generosity of spirit, huge investment of time and many contributions of Mr. Cross and Mrs. Groce. We are extremely disappointed and condemn this action.
My family is aware the board has received several letters regarding this topic with no response from them for the exception of one member acknowledging receipt. Operating in a vacuum rarely succeeds, as you know. The lack of transparency, the “bullying” and stonewalling is causing further division in a community that is based on open, honest communication and the bringing together of people to be treated equally and fairly. We hope the board reconsiders its behavior moving forward as it appears we have lost both Mr. Cross and Mrs. Groce as treasured and valued board members.
Ronene Ettinger Anderson ‘85
Jean Ettinger ‘90
James Ettinger ‘88
Sharon Ettinger McLaughlin, Trustee 1983-2010; Trustee Emerita