BAA future remains up in air

By Ada Zhang
Staff Writer

The Baylor Alumni Association board members did not make any concrete decisions regarding the future of the BAA during their phone conference meeting this past Saturday.

This was the 10th time the BAA board has met since May 31, BAA President Collin Cox said, and the board plans to meet again within a couple of weeks. Cox said the meeting will be in person in Waco. The exact date and time of the meeting has not been set.

Despite the lack of progress on Saturday, Cox said the purpose of the meeting was to conduct an open discussion.

Previous BAA directors requested to participate, so they were included at the beginning of the discussion, Cox said.
Further into the meeting, Cox said the discussion became private and exclusive to current board members only.

The goal of the meeting, Cox said, was to give everyone a chance to be heard.

“The purpose wasn’t to come to final conclusion — it was just to start talking about it,” Cox said. “We’re trying to hear from as many people as we can.”

Cox said the BAA is currently in the “talking phase.”

The fate of the BAA and official BAA magazine, The Baylor Line, remains uncertain for now.

As the Lariat previously reported, the BAA voted to decline a Transition Agreement on Sept. 7, which would have dissolved the BAA into the university. A new licensing agreement would have been written to allow “The Line” continual use of the Baylor brand.

Since the vote failed to achieve the two-thirds yes vote majority needed to pass the agreement, however, the university officially terminated the 1993 licensing agreement on Sept. 8. This termination also applies to “The Line.” The university had notified the BAA on May 31 of the pending termination.

The licensing agreement allowed the university to control quality, meaning the university has the right to review “The Baylor Line” magazine before publication to ensure adherence to trademark policies.

The agreement did not, however, give the university editorial control over the BAA.

The agreement said the BAA’s independent voice was understood and positions taken by the BAA, even those contrary to Baylor administration or its Board of Regents, are not to be taken by the university as grounds for termination.

Starr also explained in an email to the Baylor community that although the agreement did not pass, the university is going forward with many changes outlined in the Transition Agreement.

The Baylor Alumni Network is now in charge of the Heritage Club, Lifelong Learning and marketing of Baylor’s Official Ring program, Starr said. These programs and services were previously managed by the BAA.

Cox said there are many opinions on how the BAA ought to move forward, which is why the meeting on Saturday was important.

“It was a chance to start talking through the various things we have to determine,” Cox said. “We want to proceed in a deliberate and careful way.”