Triple Crown rings were given to each member of the Board of Regents during the lunch with students on Tuesday. 


UPDATED 11:20 a.m. May 3

The Progress filed an open records request following the April 23 Board of Regents meeting, at which championship rings and pendants were presented to some members of the board, asking for documents related to the purchase of the jewelry. In response to the request, the Progress received emails, a memorandum of understanding, an invoice and photocopies of money relating to six rings and three pendants purchased for the Board of Regents.

The Eastern Kentucky University Champ Athletics account was billed for $2,565, according to the Jostens’ invoice.

According to the emails, members of the Board of Regents as of April 1 were sized for rings. Women were given the option to receive a ring or a pendant with a necklace. A ring sizer was purchased in February.

Multiple financial accounts were referenced within the various documents, including: the Eastern Kentucky University Champ Athletics account, EKU Colonel Club fund, the Board of Regents General Support Charitable Fund and the Board of Regents Initiatives fund.

The Board of Regents Initiatives fund was created by a Memorandum of Understanding between the Eastern Kentucky University Foundation and Eastern Kentucky University to establish the fund, Board of Regents Initiatives. According to the emails, Barry Poynter, vice president and treasurer for Finance and Administration, was in receipt of two donations for the amounts of $2,300 and $240 made by Lewis Diaz, chair of the Board of Regents.

The response to the request also included five pages of photocopied money totaling $2,540. The first page included 10 $100 bills; the second included 13 $100 bills; the third included four $20 bills; the fourth included four $20 bills; the fifth included four $20 bills.  

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.


Editor’s note: The documents are attached with the exception of the photocopied money, which has been described above, and the documents have been placed in chronological order.

April 25, 2019: Board of Regents Chair Lewis Diaz presented regents with championship rings at the conclusion of the lunch with students on April 23.

“I do want to celebrate winning. I do want the regents to feel what it is like to be a winner, to be a champion so we have a special surprise.” 

“These are championship rings from our triple crown year,” said Cory Erdmann, the track and field and cross country head coach.

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