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Northern Arizona U. denies request for performance reviews of business professor

University won’t share what students nor other professors thought of a former academic

Northern Arizona University refused to provide information on the performance evaluations of a former business professor.

The College Fix submitted a public records request for the student and department evaluations for Carla Holloway, who previously taught in the school’s economics, accounting and finance department before taking a new job at the University of Arizona.

The Fix requested “an opportunity to inspect or obtain copies of public records that contain the student and department evaluations” for Holloway.

“NAU has determined that the records you requested are considered confidential personnel records under ABOR policy 6-912 and/or student education records protected by FERPA; therefore, NAU is not releasing the records,” the university stated in April, four months after The Fix first filed the request.

The university has continued to ignore other requests for comments on Holloway’s time at NAU. A tip sent to The Fix indicated that professors at NAU felt Holloway, who is black, was given preferential treatment due to her race. However, none of the professors suggested by the tipster responded to requests for comment on the situation.

The tipster alleged that after one faculty member confronted Dean Ashok Subramanian, the administrator said she “could not fire her because she is black.” Subramanian did not respond to a request for comment on the situation.

In April, NAU denied the request for all of Holloway’s evaluations since she started in 2017.

Holloway now works as the executive director for distance and continuing education at the University of Arizona, a position she has held since 2022. The university news release noted her experience as “a member of the inaugural Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion committee that developed a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion strategy,” for Northern Arizona’s business school.

The University of Arizona, while indirectly answering other questions, did not answer The Fix’s questions about if Holloway will be performing similar DEI duties as she did at her former school, by incorporating DEI initiatives in NAU’s business school’s program.

The Fix asked if the school was aware of complaints against Holloway and asked for more information on its background check process.

Spokeswoman Pam Scott asked for more information about the complaints. Scott later responded with a link to the university’s background check process. She did not directly address questions about Holloway’s DEI duties but instead provided a link to the university announcement.

The university also did not give The Fix Holloway’s university email address after The Fix was unable to find it on the public university’s website.

This is not the first time an Arizona university has denied a public records request from The Fix.

The University of Arizona initially denied and then responded to a public records request in the summer of 2022 for information on its bias response teams after a threat of legal action.

MORE: Ohio bill to ban mandatory DEI on the verge of approval

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About the Author
Gigi De La Torre -- Franciscan University of Steubenville