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Sullivan announces ‘thorough’ investigation of VQR operations

by Dave McNair
(434) 295-8700 x239
published 5:32pm Thursday Aug 19, 2010
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With the story behind the suicide of the Virginia Quarterly Review’s managing editor Kevin Morrissey making national news today, new UVA president Teresa Sullivan has released a statement addressing the long-term future of the magazine, UVA’s response to concerns from VQR staff prior to Morrissey’s death, and has ratcheted up the internal probe— previously confined to finances— by announcing that she will be undertaking a “thorough review of VQR’s operations.” Here’s the president’s statement below:

Statement from President Teresa A. Sullivan / Aug. 19, 2010

The untimely death of Kevin Morrissey, the managing editor of Virginia
Quarterly Review, has caused a great deal of pain for his family, friends
and colleagues. It has also raised questions about the University’s
response to employees’ concerns about the workplace climate in the VQR
office. I therefore am announcing that we will be undertaking a thorough
review of VQR’s operations.

Conducting this review does not in any way presume that any members of the
VQR staff have been involved in improper conduct. The review will, I hope,
provide a factual basis for understanding this workplace and deciding what
corrective actions, if any, the University should undertake.

Two weeks ago, I approved a financial audit of VQR. Today, I am charging
Barbara Deily, the University’s chief audit executive, to broaden the
examination to include the management of VQR. Ms. Deily reports directly to
the Board of Visitors and is authorized to work with any outside consultants
she may choose to assist in this review.

Ms. Deily, who is known for the highest of professional standards and audit
acumen, will undertake an independent, fair and impartial review.

My hope is that this review can be completed by the end of September so that
we can address the issues and allegations that have been raised. This
timetable, however, will be subject to change if unanticipated complexities
are discovered. It is more important that this review be done well than that
it be done quickly.

The Virginia Quarterly Review has enjoyed a distinguished history since its
founding in 1925 as a publication dedicated to independent thought in the
fields of society, politics, and literature. The University of Virginia
remains strongly committed to VQR.

To comment on this statement, please go to the Hook’s original story: Tale of Woe: The Death of the VQR’s Kevin Morrissey.


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