Education

USC mega-donor Darla Moore urges board to reject ‘political influence’

Protesters rally before Friday’s USC presidential vote

University of South Carolina students and faculty march Friday to the site of the vote on university presidential candidate Robert Caslen.
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University of South Carolina students and faculty march Friday to the site of the vote on university presidential candidate Robert Caslen.

University of South Carolna mega-donor Darla Moore is urging the school’s board of trustees to resist “rank political influence” in selecting the school’s next president.

Moore emailed USC’s board of trustee members after 8 p.m. Thursday night, according to an email obtained by The State.

“The university is an institution of higher learning and the surest way to extinguish its integrity is to politicize it,” Moore wrote.

Trustee Charles Williams, who said he spoke to Moore earlier today, confirmed the authenticity of the email.

Moore has donated more than $75 million to USC, her namesake project being the Darla Moore School of Business. She was a member of the board of trustees until then. Gov. Nikki Haley replaced her with a campaign donor in 2011.

“Not one constituency of this university is in favor of the current process including the donors who are the lifeblood of the university’s future,” Moore wrote. “The process should be started over to find a qualified candidate without the current controversy. To do otherwise is to do irremediable damage to the university.”

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