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Board of Trustees

Chapter VIII - Conflict of Interest

The Trustees of Clemson University strive to adhere to the highest standards of ethics in the discharge of their individual and collective responsibilities. To ensure that these standards are met, the Board has adopted this Policy to provide guidance to individual Trustees in their activities related to their service on the Board.

Trustees of Clemson University are "public officials" as that term is defined in the South Carolina Ethics Act. As public officials, all Trustees are required to conform to the provisions of this Act. The rules of conduct set forth in the Act state that no public official may knowingly use his or her public office to obtain an economic interest for [a] the public official, [b] a member of the public official's immediate family, [c] an individual with whom the public official is associated, or [d] a business with which the public official is associated. The Act also states that a public official may not use his or her public office to influence a governmental decision in which [a] the public official, [b] a member of the public official's immediate family, [c] an individual with whom the public official is associated, or [d] a business with which the public official is associated has any economic interest. Finally, the Act prohibits a public official from accepting, asking, soliciting or agreeing to receive anything of value from another person in exchange for taking or withholding any official action. See, S. C. Statutes Annotated, Sections 8-13-700, et seq.

The Board recognizes that if any affiliation in a profession or with an organization that touches on some aspect of the University's activities were to be considered an exclusion from service on the Board, the University would lose the benefit of the contributions of time, talent and energy from a number of qualified individuals.

The Board provides the following guidelines to Trustees with regard to the appropriate disclosure and management of any potential conflict of interest.

  1. A Trustee will not take any action regarding the hiring, promotion or other employment action involving a member of the Trustee's family.
  2. A Trustee will promptly disclose any financial interest which the Trustee or a member of the Trustee's immediate family, may have in any business or enterprise which conducts business with the University. Disclosure shall be made in the manner described in this policy.
  3. A Trustee will complete an annual Statement of Economic Interest form, as required by South Carolina law. See, S.C. Statutes Annotated, Section 8-13-710.
  4. A Trustee will promptly disclose facts or situations which the Trustee recognizes may create a potential conflict of interest. Disclosure shall be made in the manner described in this policy.
  5. A Trustee having a duty to disclose any potential conflict of interest in compliance with this policy will make such disclosure to the Chairman of the Board of Trustees, or in the event the Chairman has a potential conflict of interest disclosure will be made to the Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees. The Chairman or the Vice Chairman, as appropriate, shall bring the potential conflict of interest to the Compensation Committee for consideration. The Compensation Committee may request and consider any information it determines is necessary and relevant to evaluate the potential conflict of interest, including requesting the Trustee who has disclosed the potential conflict of interest meet with the Committee. The Committee may take such action as it deems appropriate to resolve any potential conflict of interest, including but not limited to requiring no action, requiring a Trustee to recuse himself or herself, prohibiting a transaction or relationship, or otherwise managing the conflict. The deliberations of the Committee with regard to any potential conflict of interest shall be kept confidential to the fullest extent permitted by law.

February 2012

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