Another top official at Second Mile to leave charity
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STATE COLLEGE -- A second top executive at The Second Mile appears to be leaving, as the charity founded by former Penn State University assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky gets more scrutiny about how it was structured and run.
Katherine Genovese, the foundation's executive vice president and wife of recently departed CEO Jack Raykovitz, is no longer listed as a staff member on the charity's website.
The Second Mile announced Wednesday that some employees would be laid off by the end of the year, but it didn't give details. Ms. Genovese and other representatives of The Second Mile did not respond to questions about her status. Her apparent departure was first reported by The (Harrisburg) Patriot-News.
Mr. Sandusky is set to appear in court on Tuesday to face more than 50 charges that accuse him of sexually abusing 10 boys over the span of 15 years. Investigators also have questioned whether Mr. Sandusky used charity funds to "groom" the boys with extensive gifts.
An expert on nonprofit governance said that in retrospect there were some questionable aspects to the basic structure of The Second Mile.
Michael L. Wyland, who advises nonprofits as a partner in the firm Sumption & Wyland, recently analyzed the charity in an essay that appeared online in The Nonprofit Quarterly.
Mr. Wyland said he'd never seen bylaws that identify the "founder" as a corporate officer and member of the board's executive committee. The arrangement meant that Mr. Sandusky's duties conflicted with the powers of the board's chairman.
Mr. Wyland said board members have a legal responsibility to the charity, not the founder. Mr. Sandusky's extensive powers in the bylaws could have hindered such oversight.
The size of The Second Mile's board is also unusual. There are 36 people on the state board, plus more on regional boards. With that many people, "what tends to happen is the full board is not really able to exercise its responsibility. It's hard to have dialogue," Mr. Wyland said.
Penn State has hired a prominent Washington attorney and former White House counsel to advise the university's new leader.
Lanny Davis served as special counsel to President Bill Clinton. He now heads a law and crisis management firm.
Penn State spokeswoman Lisa Powers says Mr. Davis "has been engaged" to provide legal advice and counsel to Penn State President Rodney Erickson.
Mr. Davis also has served on an oversight board for President George W. Bush. The Centre Daily Times first reported the hiring Friday.
First Published December 10, 2011 12:00 am