From Jeferson Scholars “A Community of Excellence”

One of the friction points was with the development office, which seemed surprised at what it saw as the program’s chutzpah in encroaching on what it regarded as its territory. “Basically it was a turf war,” says Tullis, “and if we identified someone, we called on them. We were turning up new prospects.” Nevertheless, relations were occasionally strained.

The academic deans represented another hot spot. “When we started raising money,” says Candler, “some of the deans were concerned that we were taking money away from academic programs. It took a while to convince them, and some tension developed between the Alumni Association and the University because of our fundraising.”

Ultimately Tullis, as chairman of the campaign, had an unprecedented meeting with some of the deans early one morning. “At 6:30 there were seven deans,” says Tullis, “an unbelievably accomplished group of men. I told them, ‘Don’t attack Jimmy. Attack me. Jimmy is working for the Board of Managers and the Jefferson Scholars Program.’ Each one of them laid me low.”

They talked for a while, and then Tullis gave them the Jefferson Scholars fundraising position. Now that we know your grievances I'll tell you what we do when we make a call. We call on anyone we think might be interested. If they express another interest, we direct that name to the place of interest. And I want you to know that not one call Jimmy or I have made has anyone ever discussed giving money generally to the University or to any individual department. We will contact that particular dean if they do.?

The meeting let some steam out of a pressure-filled situation, but time and experience would be necessary for tensions to subside entirely.