Lowder did the right thing
May 17, 2011 | 1603 views |  0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Bobby Lowder did the right thing on Monday when he called Gov. Robert Bentley and told him to remove his name from the list of potential trustees for Auburn University. Lowder has been a trustee since 1983 and his low-profile but all-powerful role at Auburn has been both good and bad for the university.

Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh, R-Anniston, who has sidelined the state Senate’s vote on 12 new trustees nominated by Gov. Bentley, says Lowder’s stepping back won’t change his position.

“My position has never been about Bobby Lowder. This doesn’t change anything in my book,” Marsh said. “To me, if I’d had my wish, I’d ask them to withdraw all the names and go through a current selection process and resubmit next year.”

Sen. Marsh said he didn’t like the way Gov. Bentley rushed the process. After receiving 200 names in the spring, Gov. Bentley sent nine nominations to the Senate for approval on April 18. Marsh says he wants the committee to take more time considering the candidates before sending them to the Senate for approval.

Lowder has long been a lightning rod at Auburn, criticized by many for his micromanaging issues regarding the university, especially its football program.

He is the former CEO and chairman of Colonial BancGroup, which filed one of the country’s largest bankruptcy cases shortly after he retired. He and his family are also major donors to Auburn’s athletic department and academic departments.

Lowder has made many contributions to Auburn. He has also created many problems for the school. It’s time to let someone else sit at the table and participate in the decisions that will guide Auburn in the future.