Outgoing Panthers owner Jerry Richardson fined $2.75 million after workplace misconduct investigation

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Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson was fined $2.75 million. (WTVD)

Outgoing Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson was fined $2.75 million to support organizations addressing race and gender-based issues and fund league-wide workplace training as a result of NFL's investigation into workplace misconduct allegations made against him.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced Thursday the findings and conclusions in the investigation conducted by former U.S. Attorney and SEC Chairman Mary Jo White into allegations of workplace misconduct by Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson.

Following the initial release of these allegations, Richardson announced his intention to sell the Carolina Panthers and he removed himself from day-to-day operations.


CHANGES MADE:
  • Richardson resigned

  • Team sold to David Tepper

  • Panthers implemented robust anti-harassment and discrimination policy and retained outside experts to do workplace training

  • Team must give league year-end update on internal workplace policies


Here's a breakdown of the investigation:

First, the review identified each of the allegations that has been publicly reported as well as similar matters that have not been the subject of public discussion.

While the investigation was not limited to the matters that have been publicly reported, and did not seek to confirm or reject the details of each specific allegation made regarding Richardson, it did substantiate the claims that have been made, and identified no information that would either discredit the claims made or that would undermine the veracity of the employees who have made those claims.

The investigation also revealed the conduct was limited to Richardson, no other Panthers employee engaged in such conduct.

The investigation confirmed that the Panthers and its ownership did not report the claims, or any agreements to resolve those claims, to the League Office and that neither the League Office nor the club's limited partners were aware of these matters until they became public in December of 2017.

LEAGUE RECOMMENDATIONS
  • A specific prohibition of using Non-Disclosure Agreements to limit reporting of potential violations or cooperation in League investigations under the Personal Conduct Policy.

  • A specific requirement that claims of workplace misconduct issues be reported to the League Office under the Personal Conduct Policy.

  • A specific requirement that claims of workplace misconduct issues be reported to the League Office under the Personal Conduct Policy.

  • Establish a hotline or other system to allow League and club employees to report issues of workplace conduct on a confidential basis.

  • Review workplace best practices and policies with owners, club counsel, and club human resource executives.


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