One Year Later: Baylor Family Cites Failure of Leadership as Campus-wide Sexual Assault Scandal Lingers

WACO, Texas – John Eddie Williams, a member of the Baylor Class of ’76 and a 1978 Baylor Law School graduate, today issued the following statement on behalf of Bears for Leadership Reform (BLR) one year after the Baylor University Board Regents issued a scathing report detailing the University’s “fundamental failure” in handling allegations of sexual assault across the world’s largest Baptist campus:

“On this day one year ago, the Baylor Board of Regents made a big show in terminating the University’s president, athletic director and head football coach for a failure of leadership in handling numerous sexual assault allegations involving our campus community. 

“In the “Findings of Fact” written by the Board of Regents last May, the University admitted that it failed victims of sexual assault by creating a culture and belief that sexual violence ‘doesn’t happen here,’ by failing to conduct adequate investigations of reports, by blaming the victims, and even by retaliating against victims for raising complaints of sexual assault.

“Baylor admitted that the conduct of these unnamed administrators and other officials had the effect of preventing complainants from receiving justice. But in a peculiar rejection of transparency and accountability, Regents have provided no specifics. The facts that gave rise to these admissions have never been revealed.

“Baylor has never assured its students or alumni that those responsible for the reprehensible Baylor culture have been removed from positions of leadership. There is good reason to believe that Baylor Regents continue to harbor those who turned a blind eye to sexual assault.

“Baylor Regents should use the occasion of the one year anniversary to stop and reflect on the immediate and long-term consequences of their own failure of leadership, tell the Baylor Family what really happened and whether changes in personnel and policy are adequate to protect victims, improve public safety, and ensure nothing like this ever happens again.

“We hope the new Baylor leadership, including incoming Board Chairman Joel Allison and incoming President Linda Livingstone, will help us resolve these important unanswered questions.”


# # #