I was very disappointed to see that chart of Ivy League presidents’ corporate board participation (Campus Notebook, March 7). President Tilghman is comfortably near the top, while four of her colleagues abstain from the practice, presumably for ethical reasons.
When I first came to Princeton 30 years ago as a professional librarian, I wanted to earn some extra Christmas money (nights and weekends in December) for my family at some retail store like Macy’s. But I couldn’t do that: It wasn’t professional, I was an employee of Princeton, and that meant a 100 percent commitment. Apparently, however, certain “regular” outside participation is fine — even for those who you would think really need to give Princeton 100 percent.
It’s the same old story, however you want to define such participation and its purpose (mine was temporary, mercenary, and selfish, of course): Those at the top have different rules and are extremely well-compensated for playing by them.