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    Alumni Resignations at Widener Law School In Wake of Connell Case

    Alumni Resignations at Widener Law School In Wake of Connell Case

    The fallout from the handling of the case of Prof. Lawrence Connell is starting to be felt at Widener Law School.

    Widener has confirmed that two members of Widener Law School’s Board of Overseers and fundraising subcommittee have resigned.  In an e-mail to me, Widener’s Director of Public Relations wrote:

    That is not accurate [that two University trustees resigned]. No trustees have resigned. A member of the Board of Overseers for the School of Law and a member of the School of Law Campaign Subcommittee have stepped down from those roles for reasons that they have personally conveyed to President Harris and Dean Ammons.

    Widener University will continue to follow its legal obligation to investigate complaints of discrimination and harassment complaints filed by students and will treat acts of retaliation against such students as serious charges in accordance with federal law.

    Widener did not identify the individuals who resigned, and declined to divulge the reasons.

    Sources reveal to me that the two individuals are indeed very high profile members of the Widener Law School Alumni community, including a large donor, and that in at least one of the instances, the person stated that he was resigning in protest of the sanctions imposed on Connell.

    I will have more details in a subsequent post, probably Monday if not sooner, as additional details are confirmed.


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    […] You may get your wish, SLR: This situation might get the attention of people who have authority over Dean Ammons. It's sad that it takes hitting Widener Law School in the wallet to have a chance […]

    MaggotAtBroadAndWall | August 20, 2011 at 1:23 pm

    I suppose the board member who is resigning is doing the honorable thing. But it is clear to any reasonable person that Dean Ammons recommendation to punish Professor Connell by suspending him for a year without pay, forcing him to undergo a psychiatric evaluation, and making him issue a formal apology is harsh, bone headed and wrong.

    I don’t understand why he was unable to persuade his fellow board members/administrators to reject her recommendation.

    Quixotic77 | August 20, 2011 at 1:37 pm

    The fish rots from the head down. The individual who approved the Soviet psychiatry remedy for Prof. Connell is Widener University President James T. Harris III (who is additionally an officially certified idiot, i.e., a holder of Doctorate in Education.) See this letter, released in a previous post on Legal Insurrection:

    So perhaps it’s time for a public revolt by alumni and trustees and professors, not just of the Law School, but of Widener University generally.

    miss muffett | August 20, 2011 at 4:42 pm

    Widener’s become a Narrower of worldview.

    Apparently, there, justice, free speech and free-wheeling hypotheticals aren’t for everybody.

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