Katz hiring an embarrassment

The Chart

No, the circus hasn’t come to town.

It never left in the first place.

Yet again — and we stress the again —Missouri Southern finds itself on the front page and on television for some less-than-flattering news.

The University hired an admitted embezzler to teach accounting classes.


Nobody knows whether the officials who hired Norman Katz, who stole $129,000 from an Ohio museum while working as an accountant there, were aware of his criminal past.

The most anybody at Southern will say is “no comment.”

This continues a trend of the people in charge refusing to comment about anything even relatively negative regarding this institution.

Instead of making public statements, telling people what they need and want to know and trying to put a positive spin on the news (as The Joplin Globe publisher Michael Beatty infamously encouraged University President Bruce Speck to do in an e-mail last spring), Southern officials act like the media is the enemy and nobody needs to know anything.

“No comment,” they say.

It only makes the University look worse. Like it has something to hide everytime the feculence hits the fan.

What University officials need to do when something like this happens is be up front and be honest. Get the facts out there and let people judge based on facts.

Of course, this latest black eye could have been avoided had Southern chosen not to hire a felon.