Penn State alumni elect Jubelirer to board

After falling short a year ago, former state senator Robert C. Jubelirer was elected to the Penn State Board of Trustees on Friday.

Jubelirer was one of three elected to alumni seats on the board. He finished third in the alumni voting with 8,101 votes. Alice Pope, with 10,025 votes, and Albert Lord, with 9,516, were also elected.

Thirty-two people were seeking the three alumni seats up for election this year.

Jubelirer said he is “honored and humbled” to have been elected.

“I’ve been involved in a lot of elections, and this one feels fantastic,” he said. “It was a very tough election. I’ve been, frankly, at it for two years – I’ve probably never worked harder in another election.”

Jubelirer placed sixth last year among alumni vying for the board.

This year, however, he was endorsed by Penn Staters for Responsible Stewardship, a group that formed in response to the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse case to question the decisions made by Penn State officials.

PS4RS also endorsed Pope and Lord. Jubelirer said he “worked hard” to earn backing from the organization.

The group’s membership is about 20,0000, and its endorsements have swept the elections for the last two years. Jubelirer, Pope and Lord unseated incumbent Joel Myers, the only person running for re-election to the alumni seats.

Maribeth Roman Schmidt said PS4RS is “pleased” to see its nominees take the election for the second year.

None of the nine alumni-elected trustees who served on the board in November 2011 – when charges against Sandusky were revealed and former head football coach Joe Paterno was fired – remain on the board, Jubelirer said.

On the board, Jubelirer said he will work for reforms, including cutting the board’s size and holding trustees to a stronger code of ethics. He said his track record in Harrisburg, where he served as a state senator from 1975 to 2006 and as lieutenant governor from 2001 to 2003, proves that he is a strong advocate for reform.

“I have always been a reformer, and I have always tried to stand up against what I thought was wrong,” he said.

Jubelirer said it feels “good to be back” in the leadership game, and he’s looking forward to getting started with his fellow trustees.

“I made a difference in Harrisburg for a long time,” he said. “I used to love waking up in the morning, knowing that I could make a difference. And I hope I get that feeling again, that I can make a difference on this board.”

A complete breakdown of the alumni election results is available at