This 2024 - Let's Win the Battle of Headlines
update deskColleges & Universities

Hedge-fund CEO claims ‘election interference’ in failed bids to reform Harvard board

Three candidates proposed by Bill Ackman and one by Mark Zuckerberg would have pushed for greater action against antisemitism.

Entrance gate and east facade of Sever Hall at Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass. Credit: Roman Babakin/Shutterstock.
Entrance gate and east facade of Sever Hall at Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass. Credit: Roman Babakin/Shutterstock.

According to Bill Ackman, founder and CEO of Pershing Square Capital Management, Harvard University disrupted his efforts to promote potential members of the school’s board who aimed to make substantive changes to reduce hate on campus.

Three candidates backed by Ackman announced on Feb. 2 that they failed to collect the necessary 3,238 signatures from alumni to qualify for the ballot.

Ackman said, “If this is not election interference, I don’t know what is.” He stated that the system Harvard had created to collect signatures was difficult to use and that it appeared to have been changed just days before the deadline when signatures were due.

Attorney Zoe Bedell, one of Ackman’s candidates, said, “We look forward to trying again next year.” She and others backed by Ackman ran on a platform of countering antisemitism, defending free speech, improving management and maintaining high academic standards.

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg (who dropped out of Harvard as a student to focus on creating Facebook) also pushed for a new potential board member—independent of Ackman—but failed to gain the necessary alumni signatures. 

The candidate, former Meta employee Sam Lessin, complained about signing procedures. He said, “I easily have the 337 and many many more in my inbox from alums who tried to submit but were blocked!”

You have read 3 articles this month.
Register to receive full access to JNS.

Israel is at war - Support JNS

JNS is combating the barrage of misinformation with factual reporting. We depend on your support.

Support JNS
Topics
Comments
Thank you. You are a loyal JNS Reader.
You have read more than 10 articles this month.
Please register for full access to continue reading and post comments.
Never miss a thing
Get the best stories faster with JNS breaking news updates