USC, already reeling from the ouster of two deans at its medical school and the recent arrest of an assistant basketball coach, suffered another black eye Wednesday with news that one of its vice presidents, David Carrera, has parted ways with the university over sexual harassment allegations.
Carrera, one of the leaders of the university’s $6 billion fundraising campaign, left his post last week, although it was unclear if he was fired or resigned, the Los Angeles Times reported on its website. According to the report, the USC Office of Equity and Diversity is conducting an investigation that has involved dozens of interviews about Carrera’s treatment of women.
“Discrimination and harassment have no place at USC,” OED executive director Gretchen Dahlinger Means told The Times. “The university does not tolerate behavior that violates its strict policy and takes appropriate disciplinary action when it does.”
Means said the investigation into Carrera is continuing.
According to The Times, USC received at least five complaints about Carrera this year, but an investigation did not begin until a Times story in July focusing on allegations of drug use by Carmen Puliafito, the former dean of the USC Keck School of Medicine, which prompted a renewed complaint against Carrera.
According to The Times report, employees have alleged that Carrera asked women who worked for him about their dating habits and talked to them about his sex life, and he also made comments about the desirability of female co- workers and women he met at fundraising events.
Carrera had been with USC since 2014, but was placed on leave Sept. 9, The Times reported.
News of his departure follows last week’s resignation of Keck medical school Dean Rohit Varma, who stepped down amid renewed questions about a 2002 sexual harassment allegation against him by a female researcher. Varma had succeeded Puliafito, who left in March 2016 amid questions about drug use and consorting with criminals.
In September, USC assistant men’s basketball coach Tony Bland was arrested in connection with a wide-ranging federal bribery probe.