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Kentucky Baptist college president fired after allegation he sexually assaulted female employee

William Jones
Former Georgetown College President William Jones |

The president of a Baptist college in Kentucky has been removed over allegations of inappropriate behavior, including sexually assaulting a female employee. 

The Board of Trustees of Georgetown College terminated the employment of President William A. Jones on Monday. Rosemary Allen, the college’s provost, is now the acting president of the school.

In a statement, the board detailed that it was made aware of “allegations of a sexual assault of a female College employee, inappropriate behavior with another female College employee, and other conduct in violation of Jones’s employment agreement with the College.” 

“The College took immediate steps to investigate the allegations. The college has engaged outside counsel to continue the investigation,” the statement released by the trustees reads. 

Board of Trustees Chair Robert L. Mills called a meeting for dismissal with the board’s executive committee Monday. Following the committee’s decision to remove Jones, the full board affirmed the action in another meeting later that day.

“Georgetown College does not tolerate violence or misuse of authority. We hold our administrators, students and faculty to the highest standards of moral and ethical conduct,” Mills said in a statement. “We are surprised and deeply disappointed by what we have learned. We will support the members of our Georgetown College family who are directly impacted and we will work cooperatively with ongoing or any future investigations.”

Mills said the board is “confident” in Allen’s leadership and “appreciates her dedication to the continuing mission of Georgetown College during this difficult time.”

The allegations against Jones remain under investigation. 

Jones was the 25th president at Georgetown College, which has strong ties to the Kentucky Baptists and has a mission to “prepare students to engage in their life’s pursuits with thoughtfulness and skill by providing an educational experience in a Christian community.” Jone was hired in 2019.

He previously served as the president of Bethany College in Lindsborg, Kansas, and came to Georgetown with an “impressive history of fundraising and growing enrollment.”

Jones graduated from Berea College with a bachelor’s degree in political science. He earned his master’s degree in philanthropy and development from St. Mary’s University of Minnesota.

Georgetown College Vice President Jonathan Sands Wise told The Daily Beast that although Jones’ removal was “very sudden,” the board spoke with “relevant individuals” to determine that he had “clearly broken his employment agreement with the college.”

“Even without complete knowledge [of the situation], that was clear,” Sands Wise said. “They decided at that time they had to terminate [Jones’] employment to protect those who are vulnerable.” 

Acting President Allen shared the news with the campus in an email on Tuesday to the 1,500 enrolled students, reports The Daily Beast.

“The college was not the president, but rather its students, faculty, coaches, and staff [and] Georgetown’s mission — to serve its students — has not changed and will remain focused on healing the community,” the letter reads. 

Sands Wise said that there is “definitely some shock” that comes with the news. 

Georgetown College held a “listening session” for students on Tuesday evening.     

“We are going to have some feelings of grief and disappointment,” concluded Sands Wise.

Outside counsel is continuing the investigation and it is unclear if the charges will be brought against Jones.

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