October 7, 2013
To: Stanford University
Re: Stanford Justice Project
My contact with the Stanford Office of Community Standards and the University’s Board of Judicial Affairs over the past three years has caused me to question my support of Stanford as an institution. I was an alumnus advisor to a student wrongfully accused of a violation of the Honor Code, and I experienced the judicial process firsthand. My student, along with others in his situation, faced direct intimidation from University officials. He had to overcome a confusing process, uncooperative staff, and a stacked case against him. Even though his circumstances did not have enough evidence to warrant review by the panel, it was unfairly argued by the Faculty representatives and he narrowly escaped with a split decision.
I came away from the experience thankful of the result and hopeful that Stanford would review its outdated and skewed process for hearing these cases. The staff involved showed a clear lack of training and, consequently, have dangerously interpreted sections of the Stanford Judicial Charter to better suit their needs. Procedures were not standardized, and the entire organization lacked the rigor and oversight that I would expect from Stanford University. I am absolutely confident that innocent students have been found guilty through this slanted system.
I am contributing my thoughts today because I know there are violations (or unauthorized amendments) of the Stanford Judicial Charter that still need to be addressed. As a proud alumnus, these are of great concern to me. I believe that through an independent review and a series of steps to enforce the Charter, Stanford can establish a Judicial System that lives up to its academic reputation, and I am committed to resolving these issues through my support and contributions to this project.
Graham Gilmer ’05
Booz Allen Hamilton