Baylor Title IX Coordinator Patty Crawford resigned from her position at the school on Tuesday. On Wednesday morning she appeared on “CBS This Morning” and accused Baylor of setting her up to fail.
“I think Baylor set me up to fail from the beginning,” Crawford told CBS. “The harder I worked, the more resistance I received from senior leadership. I increased reports by 700 percent over my time, and it became clear that was not something the university wanted.
“In July I made it clear in writing that I had concerns and that the university was violating Title IX, and my environment got worse.”
Upon news of Crawford’s resignation, first reported by the Waco Tribune, Baylor released a statement.
“Our understanding is that Patty was disappointed in her role in implementing the recommendations that resulted from the Pepper Hamilton investigation,” the statement read.
“The university is grateful for Patty’s leadership in establishing fair and equitable Title IX processes that are also supportive of the needs of survivors. We will always seek to continuously improve and are confident that the very capable Title IX staff will continue the important work of educating, supporting and responding to the needs of those impacted by interpersonal violence.”
Shortly after news broke of Crawford’s resignation, reports by CBS affiliate KWTX-TV surfaced that Baylor had offered her a $1.5 million settlement. She had reportedly filed a complaint of retaliation after Baylor’s chief operating officer, senior vice president and the lead of the school’s Sexual Assault Task Force took away her authority to handle Title IX complaints.
She reportedly rejected the offer and “balked” at signing a confidentiality agreement for an addition $50,000. Her lawyer, Rogge Dunn, reportedly countered with $2 million, which Baylor is said to have rejected. To which Crawford told the school that she would be going public with her story. Hours later, she appeared on “CBS This Morning”
The Waco Tribune asked the school about CBS affiliate KWTX’s report, where Baylor spokesperson Tonya Lewis let it slip that Crawford also allegedly requested to retain book and movie rights.
“Demand for 1 million dollars was surprising,” Lewis told the Waco Tribune. “And her request to retain book and movie rights was troubling, and we can’t explain her motivation.”
Crawford was asked about those alleged demands in her “CBS This Morning” interview, but her lawyer stepped in before she could answer.
“Well let me say this, there was a mediation and Texas law is quite clear that you cannot comment on what took place,” Dunn said. “In a desperate attempt to smear Patty, what they’ve done is violate Texas law.”
News of Crawford’s resignation is somewhat surprising. In August of this year, a full month after she says she made it clear in writing that she had concerns, she sat down with the Waco Tribune in a lengthy interview and painted a quite different story than what we are hearing now.
Q: Did you ask for help from administrators and others?
A: Absolutely. And I keep asking for help, and I get listened to.
Q: Are you being listened to more now, since May (when regents heard the full Pepper Hamilton report)?
A: Yeah, I think so. I think people care about these issues, generally, and no one wants things like this to happen. But, the reality of an environment or a climate, is until you know and until it’s talked about, no one really knows how you infrastructure it, specifically within this culture. And if I went to another university, I would have done the same thing based on what that university needed and what that culture was. And that’s why the Department of Education is actually quite vague in their guidance, because they know every school is different and every culture is a little bit different. It doesn’t mean you water it down, it just means you can structure it uniquely to how you feel it works for you and your institution. We have an excellent board (of regents) that listens and is very supportive, specifically the committee that I report to. One step at a time, we’re building it.