Rutgers got $100,000 from Harvey Weinstein — and won’t give it back
PISCATAWAY — Rutgers University reiterated Tuesday that it has no plans to rescind a $100,000 donation made by film producer Harvey Weinstein, who was recently fired from his own company amid sexual assault and harassment allegations made by numerous Hollywood actresses.
The latest statement from the university came on the same day that Democrat Phil Murphy, in the first New Jersey gubernatorial debate between him and Republican Kim Guadagno, urged those in his party and elsewhere to reject monetary contributions made by the 65-year-old former head of The Weinstein Company.
Earlier on Tuesday, Guadagno on Twitter had accused Murphy of scheduling a secret meeting with Weinstein in August and continuing to accept money from him, charges Murphy denied during the debate.
In a statement provided to New Jersey 101.5, Rutgers director of media relations Dory Devlin characterized the accusations against Weinstein as "appalling and indefensible," but said Rutgers will keep the money that Weinstein, through the H. Weinstein Family Foundation, gave to the school's Gloria Steinem Chair in Media, Culture, and Feminist Studies.
"We think devoting these funds to advance women's equality is a better use of the dollars than returning the donation," Devlin said in the statement.
University of Southern California, in contrast to Rutgers, is declining a $5 million Weinstein donation toward a scholarship program for female filmmakers, according to a statement from the school.
Patrick Lavery produces "New Jersey's First News" and is New Jersey 101.5's morning drive breaking news reporter. As a child actor, he had a brief appearance in the 1996 Woody Allen film Everyone Says I Love You, released by Harvey Weinstein's former company, Miramax Films. Follow Patrick on Twitter @plavery1015 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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