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Houston Breakthrough 1980-02
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Houston Breakthrough 1980-02 - Page 6. February 1980. Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. April 20, 2014. http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/feminist/item/371/show/346.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

(February 1980). Houston Breakthrough 1980-02 - Page 6. Houston and Texas Feminist and Lesbian Newsletters. Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/feminist/item/371/show/346

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Houston Breakthrough 1980-02 - Page 6, February 1980, Houston and Texas Feminist and Lesbian Newsletters, Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries, accessed April 20, 2014, http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/feminist/item/371/show/346.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

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Title Houston Breakthrough 1980-02
Publisher Breakthrough Publishing Co.
Date February 1980
Subject.Topical (LCSH)
  • Women--Texas--Periodicals
  • Feminism--United States--Periodicals
Subject.Geographic (TGN)
  • Houston, Texas
Genre (AAT)
  • periodicals
Language English
Physical Description 32 page periodical
Format (IMT)
  • image/jpeg
Original Item Location http://library.uh.edu/record=b2332724~S11
Digital Collection Houston and Texas Feminist and Lesbian Newsletters
Digital Collection URL http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/feminist
Repository Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries
Repository URL http://info.lib.uh.edu/about/campus-libraries-collections/special-collections
Use and Reproduction Educational use only, no other permissions given. Copyright to this resource is held by the content creator, author, artist or other entity, and is provided here for educational purposes only. It may not be reproduced or distributed in any format without written permission of the copyright owner. For more information please see the UH Digital Library Fair Use policy on the “About” page of this website.
File name index.cpd
Item Description
Title Page 6
Subject.Topical (LCSH)
  • Women--Texas--Periodicals
  • Feminism--United States--Periodicals
Repository Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries
Use and Reproduction Educational use only, no other permissions given. Copyright to this resource is held by the content creator, author, artist or other entity, and is provided here for educational purposes only. It may not be reproduced or distributed in any format without written permission of the copyright owner. For more information please see the UH Digital Library Fair Use policy on the “About” page of this website.
File name femin_201109_557af.jpg
Transcript LOCAL COLOR continued Former UN dean Calvin Cannon (far right) meets with The Dinner Party committee members (I to r): Diane Gelon, artist Judy Chicago, and Mary Ross Taylor. necessary to make a re-assignment." Dr. Nanette Bruckner co-chaired that evaluation committee with colleague Dr. John Gorman. "I'm astonished to hear the Chancellor's account of our faculty evaluation, which was overwhelmingly in favor of Dean Cannon. I would say 45 out of 50 were highly favorable. There were only a few critical evaluations, but that's to be expected." Cannon said he himself ordered the evaluation after he discovered two faculty members had written a letter, "denouncing me as dean." He came upon that letter quite by accident. It seems that months after a faculty appointment that Cannon recommended was turned down, he learned about the existence of another letter — one critical of this particular faculty member. It had been in the possession of the Provost and Vice Chancellor Louis Rodriguez. Cannon "stormed into the provost's office," demanding to know why this letter was never brought to his attention. "Instead of producing that letter — he was so nervous, I guess — he produced the wrong letter, one denouncing me, dated December 1977, five months earlier." Cannon said he was furious with the provost, not with the two faculty members who had written the letter criticizing him. He read the letter at a faculty meeting and asked for the group's evaluation of him as dean. "I did not wish to live in Fool's Paradise. If the general feeling of the faculty had been that I had served my time, I needed to know the truth." He said the faculty evaluations were largely positive and while he won the battle, he may have lost the war. "The provost never forgave me for that." There is more than a suggestion from Cannon that Provost Rodriguez is the silent partner and party to his dismissal as dean, and that Neumann is simply carrying out the deed. Breakthrough tried unsuccessfully to reach the provost. Rodriguez told one news source he would add nothing to Neumann's comments, and did not want the matter "bandied about in the press." Top down administration is the law in Texas. Administrative officials of any university serve at the pleasure of their next echelon. "No one denies the chancellor had the legal right to do this," said one faculty member. "At a large university the faculty would probably not have much to do with the dean, but Clear Lake is new and relatively small and the relationship was an intimate one from the start." For the administration to act alone, not to involve or give them any reason for the administration's actions was very wrong, in her view. "You feel powerless with all those people making decisions without any consideration for our feelings," said Bruckner, an associate professor in behavioral sciences and women's studies. "I would say the faculty is unanimously upset about the way in which he is being reassigned or let go." "I could introduce you to people whose morale has been lifted by this," said Neumann. "For every detractor, I can find a protagonist end vice versa. For every person who thinks the chancellor's done the wrong thing in this case, I can find you at least one who thinks I did the right thing. But don't take a poll, it might come out the wrong way." Cannon, feeling "utterly frustrated" by the whole affair, said the action was "completely unfair and unjust. I feel something's wrong with a university in which this could happen. Just like I think a preacher should be less sinful than his flock, I feel a university should be more humane than, say, the Post Office. Universities are there as moral institutions. "A mere personality conflict or policy differences are just relatively trivial compared to other things. I've given 10 years of the best I've had to offer to the university." In the faculty letter of support, the 45 signers credited Cannon's deanship for bringing events "for which we as a university have received (national) recognition — Judy Chicago's The Dinner Party. a Stockhausen concert, and James Clauser dance performances. "Working from your remarkable knowledge and understanding of the arts, a knowledge that would be rare even in an art administrator, you have developed an arts program that would do credit to a university twice our size," wrote the faculty. "It is well known in Houston that Clear Lake is the place where the really interesting events are occuring. In Canon's view, the arts are simply a component part of the university. He recalled a discussion that came up when they were looking at the blueprints for the campus, of whether or not to have an art gallery. "And I said no. In the first place that would be expensive. With the kind of architecture that we have begun to develop here, there is no reason to have a gallery. The whole university should be a gallery. Instead of having art tucked away in some place where only the artist and the cognoscenti go look at it, let's have art throughout the whole university. I tried to take art to everybody." Gretchen Mieszkowski, a full professor of literature at UH/CLC, had taught at three other universities, Yale, the University of Chicago, and Queen's University in Canada. "Calvin Cannon is one of the finest administrators I've ever worked with," said professor Mieszkowski. "I admire his values and his capacity to trans late them into effective action — his support of contemporary art, in repeated splendid exhibits, his support of women's studies by traditional means and by his untraditional means of bringing the Judy Chicago show here." Cannon is working on the final preparations for The Dinner Party. "Quite frankly, if it had not been for my commitment to The Dinner Party, I probably would have just walked out," confessed Cannon. "In the chancellor's mind, this was not in any way intended to diminish the success of The Dinner Party. Unfortunately, the raw fact is that my firing has consumed the entire month of January." For now, the only matter tne cnan- cellor and the former dean agree on is that the monumental sculpture become a monumental success. "It's a grand piece," said Cannon. "I'm obviously convinced about the idea of what it represents cul- tually. It deserves all our support." "The more The Dinner Party or anything else brings attention to this university, I'm in favor of that," stressed Neumann. "We don't have a basketball team or a football team. Anything we can do to draw attention to this university is wonderful." Angels up in the air BY JOANNE HARRISON Around the end of January, it looked like tube time for the Houston Angels. The Women's Professional Basketball League (WBL) franchise seemed to be going down for the count. It had cancelled one home game on January 19 because its opponent, the Dallas Diamonds, had folded—or so it seemed at the time. The bad publicity from the Dallas cancellation had no sooner made itself felt, when the Angels found themselves locked out of both of their official "home courts", the University of Houston's Hofheinz Pavilion and the Summit. Both facilities refused to allow the team to play until the Angels' front office came up with enough money to cover past due bills. Neither arena has been paid the rental fees for the Angels' previous appearances, and both the University and The Summit were damnding cash up front. Cash shouldn't have been a problem. Only a few weeks before President and General Manager Hugh Sweeney had announced the sale of the franchise for $1 million. A group of Houston investors headed by attorney Richard Klingler had offered Sweeney 20 times the $50,000 he'd paid for the Angels during the "foundation" of the WBL. Despite the fact that women basketball players are among the lowest-paid professional athletes (averaging about $10,000, an amount roughly comparable to the salaries of male indoor soccer players) Sweeney had dumped over a quarter of a million dollars during the team's first year of operation. Things were even more expensive at the start of the second year, and, like many other sports entrepreneurs, Sweeney wanted to get out from under fast, but at the same time make a reasonable profit on the time and money already invested. Sweeney himself admits that he knew nothing about women's basketball. "In fact," he says, "the first women's basketball game I ever saw was the Angel's home Joanne Harrison is a senior editor at Houston City magazine. opener on December 22 of last year (1978)." Insiders say that Sweeney never intended to hold on to the franchise for more than a year or so, and that's why the sale to the Klingler group seemed a logical progression. Unfortunately for Sweeney, the team, and the fans, the Houston group-known as Sports Resources International, Inc- proved less than sincere. To put it simply, their checks bounced all over the place. "Wi! could have filed an action on them for fraud," says WBL Commissioner Bill Byrne. "Those people put up front money, they filed documents, everything looked above board and then their checks started bouncing and Hugh Sweeney had to step back in." "Hugh Sweeney is totally innocent. He's had to meet all expenses and even make good on some of their debts," explains Byrne angrily. "At the time," he continues, "I called their attorney and said 'What are you people doing? You don't sign contracts and make deals until you have money in the bank." Byrne was on his way to Houston at press time. "We're going to pull the franchise through," he said. "We did it in Dal- las--we found new owners (a group headed by builder Mike Staver) for the team only three days after the old owners had difficulties, and we recently arranged the sale of controlling stock in the Iowa team to a cable TV and radio station owner named Dick Vance." "Let's talk facts, this is a professional league. It's not different from any other new league. I was with the old American Football League, and although it sounds terrible to say, in any professional sports league only the strong will survive." As Byrne is working to save the franchise-including entertaining offers from a group of Alabama investors who want to move the team to Birmingham-the Angels are going ahead with the remainder of their home schedule. Thanks, no doubt, to former Owl Coach Don Knodel's connections, the struggling WBL 1978 champions are playing their home games at Rice University's Autry Court. They met the resurrected Dallas Diamonds on Friday, February 8 and San Francisco on Wednesday Febraury 20 with a February 14 game against New Orleans at another location still to be determined. Fans of women's basketball, or all those who just believe in the idea of women's professional team sports, can do very little about the financial machinations of the WBL, but we can buy the tickets that are the lifeblood of any pro sport. Besides, the Angels need all the moral support they can get. HOUSTON BREAKTHROUGH FEBRUARY 1980