Denmark Tech President suspended as SLED probes school's finances

The President of Denmark Technical College John Waddell has been suspended after an audit. Waddell was suspended without pay effective Monday. The audit has been turned over to the State Law Enforcement Division. Denmark Tech Area Commission Chairman James Hayes says the state audit was requested last month because commissioners were concerned about some things they heard. State Tech Board spokeswoman Kelly Steinhilper says a routine audit in September 2008 caused the Tech Board to take a special notice of the school’s finances.”That audit showed some inconsistencies that we were working with Dr. Waddell on. We instituted an internal fraud hotline across the system in January and we started to receive quite a few things about some of the inconsistencies at Denmark Technical College.”
Waddell has been President of Denmark Tech since 2007. Waddell has also served as President of Allen University in Columbia, St. Paul’s College in Lawrenceville, Virginia and Paul Quinn College in Dallas, Texas. Orangeburg-Calhoun Technical College Vice President of Academic Affairs walter Tobin, Jr. has been named Acting President at Denmark Tech.
Steinhilper says the second audit was ordered in June in an effort to pinpoint any irregularities in the school’s financial dealings. “We conducted another audit in June and based on that audit we turned our findings over to SLED. So now that audit is part of an ongoing investigation with SLED.”
Steinhilper says SLED has not given the Tech Board a specific timetable for the conclusion of their investigation. Steinhilper says because the investigation is ongoing she could not say whether the probe involves the possible misuse of state and/or federal funds.

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