`

USA Gymnastics exec out amid fallout from Nassar scandal

May 18, 2018

Indianapolis-based USA Gymnastics has parted ways with senior vice president Rhonda Faehn, who has come under fire recently from victims of a former national team doctor now serving decades in prison for abusing athletes.

The organization announced in a statement Friday that Faehn "is no longer with USA Gymnastics."

Faehn, a former US national team member in the 1980s who later won three titles as head coach at the University of Florida, joined USA Gymnastics in 2015 and oversaw the women's elite program. Shortly after taking over she was alerted to potential abuse concerns about Larry Nassar, a longtime team physician. Faehn passed along the concerns to then USA Gymnastics president Steve Penny.

The organization then conducted an internal investigation before removing Nassar and going to federal authorities. USA Gymnastics did not alert Michigan State University, where Nassar was a faculty member, or a club in Michigan affiliated with Nassar.

Nassar, 54, pleaded guilty to molesting women and girls under the guise of treatment and was caught with child pornography. He is serving three prison sentences that will likely keep him locked up for life.

Michigan State reached a $500 million settlement this week with hundreds of Nassar's victims. While USA Gymnastics has been hit with multiple lawsuits from victims, Faehn has not been personally named in any of them unlike Penny and longtime national team coordinator Martha Karolyi.

USA Gymnastics has undergone a significant overhaul in the aftermath of Nassar's behavior. Kerry Perry took over as president last December and the entire board of directors was removed at the request of the United States Olympic Committee.

Aly Raisman, a six-time Olympic medalist, raised concerns recently about Faehn's role in the matter. Raisman said she wasn't sure why Faehn did not go to authorities herself.

In a statement, Perry did not elaborate on Faehn's departure and instead focused on trying to move the embattled organization forward.

"We recognize that change can be difficult, but we will not be deterred from making necessary and bold decisions to transform our organization," Perry said in a statement. "At USA Gymnastics, we are focused every day on creating a highly empowered culture that puts our athletes first.

ADVERTISEMENT

Recent Articles by Associated Press

Comments powered by Disqus