- Associated Press - Tuesday, July 19, 2016

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - A review of company filings shows the chief executive officer of UCSF Medical Center sits on the boards of two companies that jointly do millions of dollars of business with the hospital and have paid him more than $5 million in stock awards and cash fees over the past nine years.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports (https://bit.ly/29LS6Um ) that Mark Laret has received the money from Varian Medical Systems of Palo Alto and Nuance Communications, a Massachusetts software company. He also earns a $1.6 million annual salary.

The UC policy permits such arrangements if the work is done on personal time and it presents no conflict of interest or the appearance of one. Executives also need annual approval from their immediate boss.

In a statement, UCSF spokeswoman Barbara French says Laret “fully complied with UC policy in obtaining approvals.” Laret declined an interview.

On Thursday, the UC Board of Regents meets in San Francisco to weigh in on a plan to strengthen its policy on executives moonlighting, including how the extra work helps the university. The proposal only covers future cases and will not apply to Laret.

UC President Janet Napolitano proposed the changes in the wake of UC Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi’s questionable service on two corporate boards. Katehi had seats on the boards of textbook publisher John Wiley & Sons and for-profit college company DeVry Education Group. Katehi resigned from the boards and apologized but in April was suspended during an investigation into other possible conflicts. She has vowed to fight for her job.

A survey of 1,662 college and university heads conducted by the American Council on Education in 2011 showed that 46 percent of the public research university presidents and 37 percent of the private Ph.D.-granting institutions served on the boards of for-profit companies.

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Information from: San Francisco Chronicle, https://www.sfgate.com

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