November 8, 2015
Dear Art Students League Member,
Susan Matz, a three-term recent former Board member and candidate for President, employs the same tone as the Board and its allies, in her email yesterday to members. She endorses Mr. Barbieri's reply to our letter, and like the Board, addresses no specifics, but instead, she refers to the "Opposition" as "at best misinformed or at worst delusional and paranoid."
As part of the "Opposition", ASL 2025 candidates are conflicted on how best to respond to such emails, or whether to respond to them at all.
Can Ms. Matz really be considered an opponent of the incumbent President? She announced in yesterday's email that she "does not disagree substantively with the current administration [and] supports and applauds their efforts."
Ms. Matz says in her email that she is running against the incumbent President "because I thought a change of 'tone' was necessary, nothing more". And in her ballot statement, Ms. Matz says, "It is time for a new President. A change of attitude is imperative" and "a ten-year Presidency is long enough." Her stated motivation supports our observations that Mr. Barbieri has conducted members' meetings in a bullying manner, intimidated opponents by cutting off or ignoring their questions and comments, and failed to follow basic meeting rules.
In her ballot statement, she also says: "If you don't feel comfortable voting for me, vote for one of the other opposing candidates." Yet in her email yesterday, Ms. Matz asserts that she opposes giving the Opposition control of the Art Students League.
Additionally, Ms. Matz denies that she supports accreditation for the League. We rely on Ms. Matz's remarks during a recent membership meeting when, she explained that the League must change and evolve in order to compete with colleges and other accredited institutions.
The rather surprising decision by Ms. Matz to run for President against a former Board colleague she admires raises an important issue for voters to consider. As we stated in our initial letter to the members, "Whether by design or "serendipity," there are now four candidates running for President If the three candidates who are challenging the incumbent President split the opposition vote, the incumbent President will surely win."
We wonder if Ms. Matz's candidacy was ever real.
ASL 2025 - The Reform Team
Marne Rizika, President
Susan Brauser, Vice President
Richard Caraballo, Vice President
Roberto Franzone, Board Member
Salvatore Forte, Board Member
Walanne Steele, Board Member