Topic: center for the protection of children
The man who became a legend of the boxing ring, beating the likes of Thomas Hearns, Marvin Hagler and Roberto Duran, also spent decades beating himself up.
Gold medalist and Boxing Hall of Famer Sugar Ray Leonard spoke Monday at Penn State's Child Sexual Abuse Conference, recounting the abuse he suffered at the hands of two men who guided his amateur career in the 1970s and the anguish he endured before disclosing the ordeal in “The Big Fight: My Life in and Out of the Ring,” his 2011 autobiography.
“For 40-something years, I beat myself up,” he said, repeating, “I beat myself up. It was killing me.”
Introduced by Penn State football coach Bill O'Brien, who recalled how “blinding speed, tremendous power and great charm” turned the fighter into an immediate media sensation, Leonard confessed to crying on the plane ride from Los Angeles and in the morning prior to his speech at The Penn Stater.
Penn State’s first national conference on the topic of child sexual abuse has sold out in record time. “Child Sexual Abuse Conference: Traumatic Impact, Prevention and Intervention” is scheduled for Oct. 29-30 at The Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel.
In response to the overwhelming interest, several sessions will be live-streamed on the conference’s website, http://protectchildren.psu.edu. Audience members are being encouraged to submit questions in advance.
“We have been thrilled by the positive reaction to the conference, including offers of assistance from numerous individuals and nearly 70 outside organizations wanting to be involved,” said Kate Staley, conference co-organizer and research scientist in Penn State’s Justice Center for Research. "Live streaming some sessions will allow for even greater participation."
The conference reached its 500-attendee capacity within a month of opening registration. Those registered for the conference represent a diverse group of individuals from across the country, including medical, legal and therapeutic practitioners; researchers and scholars; several Penn State faculty and staff; and members of the general public. The conference also will feature displays from 27 exhibitors.
Benjamin H. Levi, M.D., Ph.D., a professor of pediatrics and humanities at Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center and Penn State College of Medicine, has assumed the directorship of the Center for the Protection of Children at Penn State Hershey Children’s Hospital. Dr. Levi, a practicing pediatrician and highly published expert in the area of mandated reporting of suspected child abuse, recently returned from a year-long sabbatical overseas examining how other countries protect children from abuse, including how abuse and neglect are reported to law enforcement.
Levi succeeds center inaugural director Andrea Taroli, M.D., who will focus on development of the Children’s Hospital’s clinical program for child protection—along with Kate Crowell, M.D., and Laura Duda, M.D., who are the founding members of this clinical team—a program integral to the center’s overall mission to improve the detection, treatment, and prevention of child abuse.
July 12, 2012, SCRANTON, PA - Today’s comprehensive report is sad and sobering in that it concludes that at the moment of truth, people in positions of authority and responsibility did not put the welfare of children first. The Board of Trustees, as the group that has paramount accountability for overseeing and ensuring the proper functioning and governance of the University, accepts full responsibility for the failures that occurred. The Board, in cooperation with the Administration, will take every action to ensure that events like these never happen again in our university community.
The focus of all of our actions going forward will be on driving a culture of honesty, integrity, responsible leadership and accountability at all levels and within all units of our institution.
Judge Freeh's report concludes that certain people at the University who were in a position to protect children or confront the predator failed to do so. There can be no ambiguity about that. The defenseless victims and their families are at the forefront of our thoughts and prayers. We are deeply sorry for the failure to protect these vulnerable young boys from the pain and anguish they suffered. At the same time, we are filled with admiration for the bravery shown by the young men and their families who came forward to ensure that justice will be done.
Since I was appointed president nearly six weeks ago, I have received thousands of letters and emails from individuals across the University and around the world. These notes run the gamut from strong support to questions to suggestions to dissatisfaction with my decisions or the pace of our progress. I appreciate all of the input — I value your opinions and I am committed to listening to your concerns. We weigh many factors in our decision-making process, and your feedback is important.