Lettermen to Blast Trustees on Friday–live stream


By Mike Dawsonmdawson@centredaily.com

Before the fireworks Friday, when former Penn State football lettermen have promised to lay into the board of trustees, a handful of board members will convene Thursday to pave the way for ground-breaking changes to how the 158-year-old university is governed. The board’s committee on governance and long-range planning is expected to review and recommend reforms for a vote of the full board on Friday in Hershey. Exactly what those reforms are, though, will not be known until the meeting, because its agenda is confidential, and a university spokesman could not provide firmer details about which reforms will be up for consideration.

The committee meeting is at 1 p.m. This will be streamed live on WPSU.com

Regardless of the uncertainty, the result will be unprecedented because of the long tradition of university and board governance, which became a lightning rod for criticism after the Jerry Sandusky scandal.

Politicians, elected officials and alumni have been calling for reform and changes, and the board of trustees continues to bear the brunt of the anger from seething fans and alumni over its handling of coach Joe Paterno’s ouster and the NCAA sanctions. Some groups want to purge the board of those who voted to remove Paterno as coach, while others want the size of the board reduced, a different composition or certain members stripped of their voting ability.

The best hints about what reforms to expect Thursday  are from the  committee’s last discussion on the topic in January, when the members reviewed the long list of reforms suggested by former Auditor General Jack Wagner.

Among the reforms that were discussed: whether the Penn State president or the state’s governor should have voting powers, whether the president will be the board’s secretary or whether retired university employees have to wait a few years before they can run for a board seat.

The committee is chaired by James Broadhurst and includes the former chairwoman Karen Peetz and  Joel Myers, who fired off an email a few weeks ago criticizing the NCAA and the Freeh report.

Peetz and Myers were supportive of removing the president’s voting powers, and the committee sounded in favor of stripping the governor’s voting powers, too. Broadhurst said he first wanted to discuss the latter one with Gov. Tom Corbett.

A reduction in the president’s powers was one of Wagner’s core recommendations. The former auditor general also recommended reducing the size of the board from its size of 32 members

Nothing “Independent” About Freeh Investigation


second mileLouis Freeh and Company who was hired to conduct an “independent investigation” of the Jerry Sandusky scandal and Penn State’s role in it, was anything but “independent.”  There was a built-in incentive for the investigation to place blame on Penn State (not the board of trustees—Freeh’s client), Graham Spanier, Tim Curley, Gary Schultz, and especially Joe Paterno (who was dying from lung cancer and would not be able to defend himself).  It should be made clear that Joe Paterno is the only one of the four people mentioned that was found by the Grand Jury to be honest, forthright, and cooperative in his testimony.

Mr. Freeh served as Vice Chairman, General Counsel, Corporate Secretary and Ethics Officer to MBNA Corporation, a bank holding company, from 2001 to 2006. MBNA was a major corporate sponsor of Jerry Sandusky and Second Mile (and made a lot of money by having the credit card service account for Penn State—lucrative to both parties).

Freeh was close friends with Ric Struthers.  Ric Struthers was a founding member of the management team of MBNA America which was the world’s largest affinity consumer lending company (active at Penn State).   Struthers sat on the board of directors of Sandusky’s Second Mile until 2006.  MBNA America was the lead sponsor for the MBNA Jerry Sandusky Testimonial Dinner and Roast, Friday, April 14, 2000.

MBNA’s Ric Struthers and Louis Freeh involvement with Second Mile— Would it not, at the very least, constitute a major conflict of interest in Freeh’s firm undertaking the Penn State Board of Trustee’s “independent” investigation? Is it coincidence that the Freeh Investigation never mentions culpability of the Second Mile in its “investigation?”  The Second Mile, being a child advocacy organization, had a child psychologist as its CEO, and full mandated reporting responsibility of any impropriety with children.

The Chairman of the Special Investigation Committee is Board of Trustee member Ken Frazier.  Frazier was promoted to CEO at Merck last year.  One of his predecessors at Merck also sits on the Board of Trustees, Lloyd Huck. Lloyd Huck’s wife Dottie was a board member of the Second Mile.  The Hucks have given the University over $20 million

The late William A. Schreyer, former CEO of Merrill Lynch and former chairman of Penn State’s board of trustees, gave more than $58 million to the university.   Schreyer’s daughter, DrueAnne, has served on The Second Mile board of directors since at least 1997.

Secretary of Education and (governor) appointed member of the board of trustees, Ron Tomalis is the vice-chairman of the Penn State “Special Investigative Committee” that hired Louis Freeh to investigate the Sandusky Scandal.  Varioius groups and individuals have attempted to access a copy of the contract between the Board of Trustees and Freeh’s company.  In December, a judge ruled that the contract must be released to the public.  Ron Tomalis swears he doesn’t have copies of contracts.  Tomalis wants a judge to overturn an order to release the records, at the same time claiming he (or his department) doesn’t have them. Where is the contract for the investigation which would show what the investigation was mandated to show?

Sandusky case landed on Tom Corbett’s desk in March of 2009

In 2010, Tom Corbett received $201,783.64 from Second Mile Board members. He received a total $647.481.21 from families and businesses associated to Second Mile Board members.

2010 Corbett accepted a $25,000 donation from The Second Mile—even though as Attorney General, he knew that Jerry Sandusky was being being investigated, and by 2010, the Grand Jury was deliberating the case and taking testimony.

In 2010, The Second Mile board chairman threw a fund raiser for Tom Corbett at his house for his Gubernatorial Campaign.  It took more than two years after the first report of abuse to Corbett’s Attorney General office for charges to be filed, which coincides with Corbett winning his campaign to be governor.

In 2010, Corbett released $3 million to the charity to begin construction of The Second Mile Center for Excellence (later withdrawn).  A large chunk of the $3 million grant was headed straight for the pocket of the charity’s long-time chairman and Corbett campaign contributor, Robert Poole from S & A Homes, a State College Construction Company.

Investigation to Focus on Governor’s Handling of Penn State Abuse Case


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By
HARRISBURG, Pa. — First it was a criminal case. Then it enveloped a university athletic program. Now the Penn State child sexual abuse scandal has infiltrated the realm of politics.

Attorney General Kathleen Kane, a Democrat, said she wanted to know why nearly three years elapsed before criminal charges were brought by Gov. Tom Corbett, a Republican, when he was attorney general.

Mr. Corbett rejects the suggestion of delays.

Pennsylvania’s new attorney general is set to name a special prosecutor in the coming days to investigate Gov. Tom Corbett’s handling of the case, specifically why nearly three years elapsed before criminal charges were brought.

Attorney General Kathleen Kane, a Democrat elected in November, confirmed her plans in an interview here. She suggested that when he was attorney general Mr. Corbett, a Republican, slow-walked the investigation of a longtime football coach at the center of the scandal while campaigning for governor.

Mr. Corbett, who was elected in 2010, has flatly rejected the suggestion that he delayed the case.

But polls show that a majority of Pennsylvania voters are critical of his handling of the investigation, and Ms. Kane’s inquiry is likely to cast a shadow over his bid for a second term in 2014

Be Involved! Participate in Electing Three More Trustees!


PSU Board of Trustees

I would appreciate your support! 

       june 20 2010 226  
A Note from Myke

Dear Fellow PSU Alumni,

I would like to take this opportunity to encourage you to be a part of this year’s board of trustee elections.   Many challenges lie ahead in these economic times, including slashes in funding from the state which results in higher tuition costs for the next generation.  Navigating a path through what is necessary and in the best interests of the state, it’s citizens, and the university is of utmost importance.  Economic concerns as well as serving as a moral standard bearer and educational example and leader for the local, state, and national communities all must be top priorities.  Being Penn State Proud is more than a slogan–it is a tradition and responsibility we all uphold.  When we say “We Are Penn State”–we speak as acommunity who stands as one voice.
The Alumni Office at Penn State has sent you a link to place a name in nomination for election to the board.   If you are not a member of the Alumni Association or a contributor to the Penn State Fund, you must request a ballot by sending your full name, year of graduation, major, address and current email, so that the alumni office can verify your eligibility to vote.  You can send that information to bot@psu.edu and they will send you an email letting you know that you are verified as bona fide PSU graduate.  Please share this information with other PSU graduates you know.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at PennStateMyke@aol.com.
Thanks you in advance for being involved.
In support of the Blue and White,
Myke Atwater Triebold PSU, class of ’72 (B.S., Health & P.E) & ’82 (A.T.,C, Sports Medicine)

I am asking for your help in placing my name in nomination for the 2013 election!

PA Attorney General Explains Granting Lawsuit Authority


Pennsylvania‘s attorney general said she granted Gov. Tom Corbett the authority to file a federal antitrust lawsuit against the NCAA because the litigation could present a conflict of interest as her office prosecutes three Penn State administrators.

Attorney General Linda Kelly told The Associated Press on Thursday that “an actual conflict of interest could, and likely would, arise if this office were involved in both cases.”

Paterno Family Issues Statement Regarding Lawsuit


“As we have not yet had an opportunity to review the lawsuit filed by Governor Corbett today, we cannot comment on the specifics of the litigation. What we do know, however, is that this matter is far from closed. The fact that Governor Corbett now realizes, as do many others, that there was an inexcusable rush to judgment is encouraging.

“Joe Paterno’s only guidance to us was to seek the truth. Consequently, last July when the Freeh report was released and the subsequent unprecedented and unjustified actions were taken by the Penn State University Board and the NCAA, we stated that we would engage a team of experts to conduct a careful and thoughtful review of the Freeh inquiry and the actions of the Board and the Administration. That process is nearing completion. We expect to release the analysis of the experts in the near future. At that time we will address all of the issues of the past year in a comprehensive manner.”

Press Conference Today 10 am Central–Pa Files Suit Against NCAA


Gov. Tom Corbett will announce and discuss the state of Pennsylvania‘s antitrust lawsuit against the NCAA over the sanctions it levied against Penn State at 11 a.m. Wednesday at the Nittany Lion Inn, according to multiple reports.

On Tuesday, Sports Illustrated confirmed the state is filing an antitrust lawsuit against the NCAA, though no more details were divulged.

By Tuesday night, it had been confirmed by Sports Illustrated’s Pete Thamel that Corbett will hold a press conference Wednesday morning. Local television station WJAC-TV confirmed Penn State’s Board of Trustees will meet via telephone conference prior to the press conference in order to be briefed on the lawsuit.

 

Penn State spokesman Dave La Torre said on Tuesday that Penn State has no involvement in the suit.

Penn State’s sanctions, which were handed down on July 23 during an announcement by NCAA President Mark Emmert, include a four-year postseason ban, a loss of scholarships and a $60 million fine that will go toward victim relief programs. Additionally, all wins by the football team under former coach Joe Paterno between 1998-2011 were wiped from the record books.

Spanier’s Attorney Responds to Charges


Today’s Presentment is the latest desperate act by Governor Tom Corbett to cover up and divert attention away from the fact that he failed to warn the Penn State community about the suspicions surrounding Jerry Sandusky, and instead knowingly allowed a child predator to roam free in Pennsylvania. Its timing speaks volumes.

“These charges are the work of a vindictive and politically motivated Governor working through an un-elected attorney general, Linda Kelly, whom he appointed to do his bidding and who will be a lame duck five days from now.

“There is no factual basis to support these charges, which may explain why the Attorney General and her staff have steadfastly refused – for a full year – to meet with Dr. Spanier or his lawyers to discuss this matter despite repeated attempts to do so, or to accept Dr. Spanier’s offer to appear before the grand jury again to clarify any misconceptions.

“From late 2008 through November of 2011, as Pennsylvania’s Attorney General, Tom Corbett clearly knew about the allegations against Jerry Sandusky and yet failed to act. And this failure allowed Sandusky to continue to harm children for nearly three years after he could have and should have been warned, stopped or indicted. The Governor’s legally indefensible explanations, repeated by Attorney General Kelly at her news conference today – that he couldn’t expose Sandusky for fear of compromising an ongoing grand jury investigation or that he needed more evidence – are patently absurd.

“And so, on the one hand, Corbett had access to detailed allegations about Sandusky’s child abuse and, as the chief law enforcement officer for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, allowed it to continue. On the other, Dr. Spanier was not privy to any details about a 1998 investigation that actually exonerated Sandusky and then, in 2001, was told only about an incident characterized as “horseplay”.

“Governor Corbett has made no secret of his personal hostility toward Dr. Spanier, as many witnesses will attest. He is now manipulating public officials and resources to settle a personal score. Linda Kelly’s willingness to continue this farce, on behalf of the politically motivated Governor who appointed her, apparently knows no bounds. She has already been put on notice by both candidates for Attorney General, one of whom will replace her, that they intend to review her investigation thoroughly. For her to deny, as she did a few minutes ago, that politics played no role in these charges being made five days before an election, is patently false. Graham Spanier has committed no crime and looks forward to the opportunity to clear his good name and well-earned national reputation for integrity. This Presentment is a politically motivated frame-up of an innocent man. And if these charges ever come to trial, we will prove it.

“The people of this Commonwealth, and the next Attorney General, should be outraged by this blatantly political, transparently vindictive, last-minute act of cowardice and desperation.”

Spanier Charged In Sandusky Scandal


Former Penn State President Graham Spanier‘s legal team released a statement after he was charged in connection with his involvement in the Jerry Sandusky child sexual abuse scandal.

On Thursday, Spanier was formally charged by the Attorney General’s Office for the first time. Former Penn State athletic director Tim Curley and former Penn State vice president Gary Schultz had charges added to their criminal case.

Curley, Schultz and Spanier are each charged with perjury, endangering the welfare of children, failure to report, criminal conspiracy and obstruction of justice. They are expected to be arraigned at 2 p.m. in Harrisburg on Friday.

Spanier’s legal team released a statement on his behalf following Attorney General Linda Kelly‘s press conference held at noon in Harrisburg.

“Today’s Presentment is the latest desperate act by Governor Tom Corbett to cover up and divert attention away from the fact that he failed to warn the Penn State community about the suspicions surrounding Jerry Sandusky, and instead knowingly allowed a child predator to roam free in Pennsylvania. Its timing speaks volumes. These charges are the work of a vindictive and politically motivated Governor working through an un-elected attorney general, Linda Kelly, whom he appointed to do his bidding and who will be a lame duck five days from now.

“There is no factual basis to support these charges, which may explain why the Attorney General and her staff have steadfastly refused – for a full year – to meet with Dr. Spanier or his lawyers to discuss this matter despite repeated attempts to do so, or to accept Dr. Spanier’s offer to appear before the grand jury again to clarify any misconceptions.

“From late 2008 through November of 2011, as Pennsylvania’s Attorney General, Tom Corbett clearly knew about the allegations against Jerry Sandusky and yet failed to act. And this failure allowed Sandusky to continue to harm children for nearly three years after he could have and should have been warned, stopped or indicted. The Governor’s legally indefensible explanations, repeated by Attorney General Kelly at her news conference today – that he couldn’t expose Sandusky for fear of compromising an ongoing grand jury investigation or that he needed more evidence – are patently absurd.

“And so, on the one hand, Corbett had access to detailed allegations about Sandusky’s child abuse and, as the chief law enforcement officer for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, allowed it to continue. On the other, Dr. Spanier was not privy to any details about a 1998 investigation that actually exonerated Sandusky and then, in 2001, was told only about an incident characterized as “horseplay”.

“Governor Corbett has made no secret of his personal hostility toward Dr. Spanier, as many witnesses will attest. He is now manipulating public officials and resources to settle a personal score.

“Linda Kelly’s willingness to continue this farce, on behalf of the politically motivated Governor who appointed her, apparently knows no bounds. She has already been put on notice by both candidates for Attorney General, one of whom will replace her, that they intend to review her investigation thoroughly. For her to deny, as she did a few minutes ago, that politics played no role in these charges being made five days before an election, is patently false.

“Graham Spanier has committed no crime and looks forward to the opportunity to clear his good name and well-earned national reputation for integrity. This Presentment is a politically motivated frame-up of an innocent man. And if these charges ever come to trial, we will prove it.

“The people of this Commonwealth, and the next Attorney General, should be outraged by this blatantly political, transparently vindictive, last-minute act of cowardice and desperation.”

Rally Set for September 15–Penn State’s Mishandling of Scandal!


Penn State supporters will take their issues with the university’s handling of the Jerry Sandusky scandal to the public with an on-campus rally Sept. 15.

The rally is set for 10 a.m. on the Old Main lawn. The gathering falls the day after the trustees will be meeting on campus and the same day the Nittany Lions will play Navy in a home football game with kickoff scheduled for 3:30 p.m.

Franco Harris, an outspoken defender of Paterno and critic of the board, is expected to be one of the speakers at the rally.  Rally organizers plan to use the event to call on trustees and other officials to step down. The reasons cited in event fliers and on Facebook is the board’s lack of crisis planning following a March 2011 newspaper report about a grand jury looking into Sandusky and the board’s acceptance of the Freeh investigation findings this summer.  Those involved also would like to see President Rodney Erickson and Gov. Tom Corbett resign.

Those involved would like board members to admit publicly that they made mistakes.