We are happy to announce that although Kevin Slavin (A’95) is transitioning out of his role as an alumni-elected Alumni Trustee, he will remain a trustee on the Cooper Union Board of Trustees (BOT) for another four years. Kevin Slavin has provided service to the Cooper Union in various capacities, beginning while he was a student in the 1990s. He served on the Art School Curriculum committee while he was a student and while he was a young alumnus in the 2000s. He was a member of the Art Faculty, when he came to all of our attention, during the Cooper Union Community Summit of December 2011.
Kevin was elected to the BOT in 2013 as an alumni trustee through an unprecedented (and thus far unrepeated) write-in campaign by the alumni. This was the result of his eloquent public stands against a previous administration’s announced intention to end forever Cooper Union’s tradition of free tuition and to alter the basic character of the school unilaterally. Mr. Slavin has long demonstrated a mastery of communicating paths forward through difficult issues.
He joined an openly skeptical BOT. From his first meeting on the BOT, He stated his opposition to the administration’s position and worked to find ways for Cooper Union to move forward. He spoke regularly with faculty, students, alumni, administration, trustees and the many opposing organizations. He was integral to the removal of the former president, engineering dean and the departure of members of the BOT who were opposed to the president’s departure. He was instrumental in Cooper Union’s agreement with the Office of the Attorney General of the State of New York. He worked closely with Free Cooper Union, CUAA and others to bring their voices to the BOT meetings.
In 2015, Kevin Slavin was appointed Vice-Chair of the BOT in recognition of his position as a leader on the Board. He was integral to the process that brought to Cooper Union our current President, Laura Sparks, a proven change agent. Kevin has been steadfast in his support of the work of the Free Education Committee. Kevin Slavin is a leader in shifting the culture of Cooper Union to one of transparency and accountability. The BOT and administration no longer operate hidden behind the scenes. He has been integral to restoring the relationship between the BOT and the CU community. The ongoing financial status of the school and its place on the path back to tuition free are regularly reported.
We thank Mr. Slavin for his service to our alma mater, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, and we look forward to his continued contributions.
John Leeper, Past President of CUAA
Nils Anderson, Past President of CUAA
Paul Nikulin, President of CUAA