The trustees are the highest authority in the administrative structure.
Before 2003, the main role of Oberlin’s board was
overseeing the management of the institution, but when Robert Lemley became acting chair in 2003, they started changing over to
a “strategic board,” which means "working in partnership with the
president and senior staff to set the major goals of the institution,
and working collaboratively with all campus constituencies to achieve
these goals." (Lemley)
Each member must be an Oberlin alumni, and have resources and expertise to contribute.
The responsibilities of the trustees are the approve all major decisions (especially financial and long-term)
The Executive Committee Consists of:
The chair and vice chair of the board and the chairs of the major subcommittees
Budget and Finance,
Development and Alumni Affairs,
Nominations and Governance,
Here are a couple of articles about Trustees:
the most recent update on the trustees by Robert Lemley (former chair)
here is the article "celebrating" Robert Lemley's contributions to the college
To learn more about the trustees go to
Also its just a great idea to search about them on the web. Check out their profiles on forbes etc.
Some, such as Neil Barsky, are hedge fund managers or CEOs. Some are authors.
Some of them are absolutely great, and love to talk about ideas, (although you really need to push for follow up)
Some of them are harder to talk to.
Look for the class trustees:
they are elected by the graduating class of each year, and they don't know everything about what the trustees are doing, but they are really kind and down to earth.
Or go to the next trustee forum, held once a semester.