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Winthrop president, husband return $27K salary to college

Anna Douglas
adouglas@heraldonline.com
Winthrop University President Jamie Comstock Williamson and husband, Larry
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President Jamie Comstock Williamson and husband, Larry, after Winthrop's December 2013 undergraduate commencement ceremony. Image provided by Winthrop University.

Winthrop University President Jamie Comstock Williamson and her husband, Larry, have returned to the university the $27,000 that Larry Williamson was paid during the last school year, according to a statement sent from the president's office to The Herald on Thursday afternoon.

The Herald first reported on Wednesday that Larry Williamson was paid as Winthrop's senior counsel for strategic initiatives. He was an employee in Winthrop's president's office from Sept. 1 to May 31, 2014.

Here's the full text of President Williamson's statement on Thursday:

"Larry and I are honored to be associated with Winthrop and proud of the growing role the university is playing in the Rock Hill community. Larry appreciated the opportunity to work on Winthrop’s behalf in his temporary, part-time role representing the university in Rock Hill and Columbia.

Larry was paid for his work, but the money was secondary to giving him the credentials to be recognized as someone empowered to speak on Winthrop’s behalf. As a retired Navy captain and former government relations professional, Larry could work confidently in this capacity only if he knew his position was completely appropriate. During the entire stint of his nine-month employment, we took great care to comply with the South Carolina Ethics Act.

As President, I believe I must set a standard even greater than compliance with the law and hold myself to higher values grounded in honesty and integrity. I will not allow even the appearance of wavering from those values. That is why Larry and I have returned the compensation paid to Larry by the university.

I remain proud of what Larry achieved for Winthrop. I look forward to what everyone at Winthrop will accomplish together for our students and the community."

Check back for more details.

Anna Douglas 803-329-4068
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