Following an emotionally charged sentencing hearing in the case of pedophile doctor Larry Nassar, the President of Michigan State University Lou Anna Simon announced her resignation Wednesday.
Simon's resignation came the same day that the former MSU doctor was sentenced to 40 to 175 years for criminal sexual conduct involving over 100 young girls and women that spanned more than two decades.
In a <a href="https://cabs.msu.edu/news/key-issues/issue-docs/simon-resigns.html">letter from MSU President Lou Anna Simon</a>, she says, "The last year and a half has been very difficult for the victims of Larry Nassar, for the university community and for me personally. To the survivors, I can never say enough that I am so sorry that a trusted, renowned physician was really such an evil, evil person who inflicted such harm under the guise of medical treatment."
The letter went on to say, "As tragedies are politicized, blame is inevitable. As president, it is only natural that I am the focus of this anger. Throughout my career, I have worked very hard to put Team MSU first. I have tried to make it not about me. … Therefore, I am tendering my resignation as president."
Nassar sexually molested young gymnasts when he was supposed to be treating sports injuries in a clinic on Michigan State's campus. Nassar would physically violate the young girl's often causing unrelenting pain that lasted hours, sometimes with the girl's parents in the room unaware of what his hands were doing.
The trial of the former doctor lasted weeks with dozens of former gymnasts who were victim's of Nassar's abuse <a href="https://thegoldwater.com/news/16362-USA-Gymnastics-Says-They-Won-t-Fine-McKayla-Maroney-For-Speaking-Out-Against-Larry-Nassar">coming forward to speak against him</a>. If you are interested in seeing the whole sentencing hearing it can be viewed in full here and the judge does an excellent job.
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Sen. Curtis Hertel Jr., a Democrat from East Lansing, near MSU, weighed in on the matter calling it "an important step in moving the university forward. We need to create a culture at Michigan State where survivors are listened to and believed."
Hertel went on to say, "I don't think that's happened – not just in this case. I don't think anyone could say that Lou Anna Simon hasn't had great accomplishments. But I think in this case, her actions did not meet the leadership that we need at Michigan State."
Michigan State professor Sue Carter also stepped down as the faculty's athletic representative. "I had an exchange recently with President Simon that persuaded me to know my voice and the concerns of others are not being heard," Carter said.
"I could no longer be part of an administration that was not in full grasp of the damage that has been done to the girls and women and to the institution itself."
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