USC Statement from Rick J. Caruso, USC Board of Trustees Chair, concerning the December 12, 2018 Board of Trustees Meeting
January 16, 2019
Mr. Hsieh was asked to temporarily leave the Board meeting due to a conflict of interest. That conflict was created because Mr. Hsieh was concurrently represented on the same matter and by the same attorney as Dean Ellis. Immediately prior to that Board meeting, Mr. Hsieh directed that attorney to send a letter to the Board outlining his disagreement with President Austin’s decision. At the Board meeting, Mr. Hsieh expressed his position and then was asked to leave so that the Board could have a privileged and confidential conversation. He returned to the meeting immediately following that discussion. This process was consistent with the advice of counsel. Any implication that there was another reason for this decision is erroneous.