By Cyril Tuohy, managing editor of Risk & Insurance®
Yes, that's the same university that employed former Nittany Lions defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky, who was convicted in June of 45 out of 48 counts of child sexual abuse charges stemming from behavior lasting more than a decade.
An outsider could come down on URMIA for displaying bad timing and judgment, particularly in light of the July report by former FBI Director Louis Freeh damning Penn State officials for their risk management ineptitude. How could anyone even think of anointing the risk manager of such a tarnished institution? Is URMIA so tone deaf as to not realize the public relations implications of electing the risk manager of Penn State to lead their organization over the next 12 months?
Or, you might say, URMIA has done well in picking the university risk manager in the country that has learned the most valuable lessons, and the organization couldn't have done better. If there's one risk manager who has learned a thing or two about risk management in the higher education sector over the past couple of years, it's probably Langsdale.
The truth is somewhat more pedestrian ... and coincidental. Langsdale has been URMIA's president in waiting since last September, before the Penn State scandal broke in November.
The wheels had already been set in motion for Langsdale to accede to the top spot for 2012-2013. When he does so on Oct. 2, it will be a golden opportunity for the industry to ask him about the exposures to Penn State's insurance program.
August 22, 2012
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