University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa Athletics Director Jim Donovan and Stan Sheriff Center Manager Rich Sheriff were placed on administrative leave Wednesday, pending an independent investigation following this week’s announcement that the Stevie Wonder concert originally scheduled for August 18 would not take place at the Stan Sheriff Center.
UH Mānoa Chancellor Tom Apple made the announcement at a Wednesday afternoon news conference.
“We met with the Athletics staff prior to the press conference to inform them of the decision. The stability of our student athletes, coaches and staff is very important to us,” said Apple.
Apple added that the campus was undertaking a review of its policies and procedures.
University of Hawaiʻi Vice President for Student Affairs and University/Community Relations Rockne Freitas has been named acting athletics director.
“We are fortunate that Rockne is able to step right into this role until the situation is resolved and Athletics will not miss a beat,” said UH President M.R.C. Greenwood.
Greenwood also said 95 percent of tickets purchased for the concert have been refunded, predominantly credit card transactions. Other ticket holders who purchased their tickets from the Stan Sheriff Center box office are advised to return there with identification for a full refund.
“Chancellor Apple has taken strong and decisive action,” said Greenwood. “He has the full support of the administration and the Board of Regents, and he is moving forward quickly to learn exactly what has happened.”
News coverage of the announcement includes:
- Honolulu Star-Advertiser, July 12, 2012: “Two put on leave for bogus gig” (subscription required)
- Honolulu Star-Advertiser, July 12, 2012: “Cash went to an agent not representing the talent” (subscription required)
- Honolulu Star-Advertiser, July 12, 2012: “Let’s hope Freitas can make something good happen” (subscription required)
- KPUA, July 12, 2012: “Hawaii places athletic director on leave”
- Hawaii News Now, July 11, 2012: “Concert Fallout: Donovan removed as UH athletics director”
- Honolulu Star-Advertiser, July 11, 2012: “UH commits Stevie Wonder performance blunder” (subscription required)
- Honolulu Star-Advertiser, July 11, 2012: “One wonders, will concert blunder be Donovan’s last?” (subscription required)
- Ka Leo, July 11, 2012: “Donovan, Sheriff placed on paid administrative leave”
- KHON, July 11, 2012: “UH Athletic Director Jim Donovan placed on leave after botched concert promotion”
- KITV, July 11, 2012: “UH athletics director placed on ‘indefinite administrative leave of absence’”
- KITV, July 11, 2012: “Stevie Wonder concert tickets being refunded”
- Hawaii News Now, July 10, 2012: “UH’s Stevie Wonder concert canceled”
- Ka Leo, July 10, 2012: “Stevie Wonder benefit concert canceled”
- KHON, July 10, 2012: “UH cancels Stevie Wonder concert”