Billionaire CEO Calls for Resignations and End to Donations at UPenn Over Alleged Failure to Address Antisemitism on Campus

Wall Street CEO Calls for Resignations and Donor Withdrawal Over Alleged Failure to Combat Antisemitism


Wall Street CEO Marc Rowan is urging the leaders of the University of Pennsylvania to step down and is calling on donors to stop contributing funds due to an alleged failure to denounce antisemitism and hate. Rowan, the CEO of Apollo Global Management, condemned UPenn’s response to an event held on campus last month that featured speakers with a history of making antisemitic remarks. As one of the university’s most generous donors, Rowan chairs the board of advisors at the prestigious Wharton School.

Failure to Condemn the Palestine Writes Literature Festival

The billionaire CEO argues that UPenn leaders failed to condemn the “hate-filled” Palestine Writes Literature Festival, a multi-day event held at the university’s campus. Rowan claims that the festival featured well-known antisemites and supporters of hate and racism and was financially supported by various UPenn academic departments and affiliates.

Call for Resignations and Donor Withdrawal

Rowan, who is also a parent of UPenn graduates, demanded the resignation of UPenn President Elizabeth Magill and Board of Trustees Chair Scott Bok. He encouraged all UPenn alumni and supporters who share his concerns to “close their checkbooks” until these resignations occur. Additionally, Rowan accused Magill and Bok of attempting to remove dissenting Trustees by aggressively demanding the resignation of those who signed an open letter calling for Magill to step down.

UPenn’s Response

In response to Rowan’s accusations, UPenn issued a statement expressing confidence in the leadership of Magill and Bok. The university reaffirmed its commitment to combatting antisemitism and condemned the attacks on Israel by Hamas. UPenn’s Board of Trustees unanimously supported the actions taken by the university.

Antisemitism and Freedom of Expression

UPenn leaders previously acknowledged the presence of speakers with a history of antisemitism at the Palestine Writes Literature Festival. While condemning antisemitism as contrary to their institutional values, UPenn emphasized the importance of the free exchange of ideas, even if controversial or incompatible with their principles.

Financial Repercussions and Fundraising Impact

Rowan warned that UPenn’s handling of the situation would have financial repercussions. He called on alumni and supporters to make symbolic $1 donations instead of their regular contributions to emphasize their dissatisfaction. Rowan believes that the fundraising impact of this action will be significant and overwhelming.

“I think the fundraising impact from this will be overwhelming,” Rowan told CNBC on Thursday.

Read More of this Story at – 2023-10-12 20:01:00

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