Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett set the events at Penn State in motion

When Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett was the State Attorney General, he started an investigation in 2009 into charges that former coachJerry Sandusky was molesting young boys. Corbett couldn't say anything about the investigation. But when the information finally came out Corbett used his roll as a trustee on the school board of trustees to push for a house cleaning at Penn State. He also made the decision to show up at the trustee meeting to make sure that the right thing was done. The NY Times has this:

. . . “He was upset about the inaction,” said Kevin Harley, who worked with Mr. Corbett in the attorney general’s office and is now his press secretary. “He knew what witnesses were going to the grand jury even though he was running for governor. So then he became governor, and he knew at some point that this day would be coming. He just didn’t know when it would be.”

That day came last Friday, when the charges became public against the former coach, Jerry Sandusky, and two senior university officials. Suddenly, though, Mr. Corbett faced a new challenge: as governor, he was effectively a member of Penn State’s board of trustees, the body that would decide how to handle the crisis, when to act and who, if anyone, to fire. But he also knew information about the investigation that he could not share with anyone, including other trustees, and was still bound by rules prohibiting prosecutors from making possibly prejudicial statements.

Over the next four days, then, Mr. Corbett, a Republican, kept his public statements spare, calling on trustees to act quickly and aggressively. But privately, he worked to move the board in what he believed was the right direction. He called multiple members, including Vice Chairman John P. Surma, the chief executive of U.S. Steel, and told them that the country was watching, that a change at the top was needed and that the issue was about more than a football program, according to a person with knowledge of his efforts.

Mr. Corbett eventually decided to send a public signal: he formally announced he would attend the scheduled meeting of the trustees on Friday, something he had never done before. . . .

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

<< Home