Fellow Alumni,

I thought that the negative campaign tactics of the Dartmouth Undying group and my opponents in the current Alumni Trustee election could not get any worse. But when Mort Kondracke announced an upcoming website – JoeVS Dartmouth.com – at a candidates’ forum in front of 50 people in Minneapolis on the evening of March 9, I held my breath. The site, it turned out, wasn't yet live. It only went up several days later. And a few days after that, it was removed. The site was produced by the same consultant, Chris Allen, who created John Replogle’s website as well as Mort's; it can only be classified as a negative campaigning site. It is filled with lies and smears.

I encourage you to visit this shameful site, which we have made available here http://joefordartmouth.com/KondrackeReplogleSmearSite.com and also my own site, www.JoeForDartmouth.com. Compare the two. Make up your own mind which site’s content respects the norms of civilized intellectual exchange, and also which site serves the best interests of Dartmouth College.

I have tried to make this an election about issues, my vision for Dartmouth, and the proper role of trustees in the life of the College. I have written every word on my website and in my campaign mailings, save for the detailed letters written in support of my candidacy by more than a dozen Dartmouth professors and students whom I have known for many years. None of my words or these passionate endorsements, which appear at www.JoeForDartmouth.com, disparages or even mentions my opponent.

It seems that there is more at stake in this campaign than a single seat on the Board of Trustees. The vehemence emanating from Mr. Replogle's and Mr. Kondrake's side in this race also has the goal of making trustee elections viscerally ugly. This makes sense to the small number of alumni who oppose parity on the Board and who believe alumni input to be harmful. But you know better.

I have audited more than thirty classes since graduating. My kids grew up in Hanover. I'm one of the area's major employers. And I'm a proud donor. I know the College, and I've made this election about fresh, new ideas for Dartmouth.

I need your vote to win. But no matter what happens when the votes are counted, no genuine Dartmouth man or woman could claim that the process of holding elections is unhealthy. My opponents are making it ugly. Please don't let them succeed.

Thank you for taking the time to inform yourself, and for casting a thoughtful vote in this election.

For Dartmouth,

Joseph Asch '79

P.S.  Please forward this important note to your close D friends. I would very much appreciate it.

P.P.S. To vote Joe for Dartmouth, go to http://www.voxthevote.com  . If you have misplaced your ballot, call the Office of Alumni Relations at (603) 646-3929 or email dartmouth.alumni.relations@dartmouth.edu, tell them who you are, and they will help you vote.