Special Committee Report

In the fall of 2020, the Thacher Board of Trustees convened a special committee in response to allegations of sexual misconduct and harassment involving Thacher alumni, current students, faculty, and staff. At the committee's recommendation, the Board hired the law firm of Munger, Tolles & Olson (MTO) to conduct an independent and impartial investigation. The findings of that investigation and related documents are included on this page for your review. 

Leading up to and following the release of the report in June 2021, the School and Board have taken and are undertaking a number of actions to improve our prevention of and response to sexual misconduct and demonstrate our commitment to accountability and the well-being and safety of our students—past, present, and future. 

SCHOOL ACTIONS
  • The School's boundary guidelines have been revised and strengthened.
  • New harassment and sexual misconduct policies have been created and shared with the Thacher community. 
  • The School’s sexual misconduct reporting process has been updated and expanded, clarifying and increasing the channels for reporting sexual misconduct and boundary violations within the community.
  • All employees received more than five hours of training on the topics of boundary guidelines and sexual misconduct with outside experts.
  • Students, parents, and faculty have received training on student-to-student misconduct and relationship violence.
  • In partnership with the board of trustees, Thacher has created a support fund to provide assistance with therapy related to the trauma of sexual misconduct experienced during a student's time at Thacher. The fund is confidentially and independently managed and operated by RAINN, the largest anti-sexual violence organization in the U.S., and by an independent third-party claims administrator. More information on the fund and how to access these services is available on this page below. 

BOARD ACTIONS
  • The Board established a committee on Student Safety and Well-being that is providing concentrated Board-level proactive attention, oversight, and leadership and working with the Administration to assure that our students are safe, including from sexual misconduct, and are in a physically and mentally healthy environment. This committee’s responsibilities includes assuring the timely execution of the Corrective Actions previously committed to by the Board, which we encourage our community to review, and the oversight of ongoing sexual misconduct prevention and response education at Thacher.
  • Where applicable, the perpetrators of sexual misconduct identified in MTO’s report have been banned from campus and stripped of any public recognition at Thacher.
  • The Mulligan name has been removed from the campus dining hall and athletic field steps. The Board took this action due to the occasions on which former Head of School Michael Mulligan failed to appropriately demonstrate leadership and act when informed of concerns about sexual misconduct.
  • The Board received training on the survivor experience and healthy boundaries.
  • The Board conducted an external review to assess and improve Board governance.
  • The Board is continuing oversight of the supplemental report process.

Funded Therapeutic Support

In partnership with the Thacher administration, the board of trustees has created a support fund to provide assistance with therapy related to the trauma of sexual misconduct experienced during a student's time at Thacher. The fund will be confidentially and independently managed and operated by RAINN, the largest anti-sexual violence organization in the U.S., and by an independent third-party claims administrator. Neither RAINN nor the third-party claims administrator will share any personally identifying information of those accessing the fund with the School or with Thacher's Board of Trustees. Alumni who wish to access these services are encouraged to call RAINN directly through either the toll-free hotline at 844-908-4224 or the local number for international callers at 805-243-1692.

Investigation Report


Board Conclusions

Click here to download board conclusions drawn from the Special Committee Report.

Corrective Actions

Click here to download recommended corrective actions.

Contact an Investigator

We encourage anyone who wishes to report an experience of sexual misconduct or harassment to do so.

Liz Paris/Van Dermyden Makus
lp@vmlawcorp.com
800-515-2594

Munger, Tolles & Olson (MTO)
thacher@mto.com
213-683-4910

Contact the Ventura County Sheriff's Office

Anyone with information related to allegations of sexual misconduct at Thacher may contact Sergeant Ryan Clark of the Ventura County Sheriff's Office at (805) 384-4721. Click here to read a press release from the Sheriff's Office. 

In addition, the Ventura County Family Justice Center is available to assist all those who have been impacted by these painful events. The VCFJC is a collaborative community response to domestic violence, sexual assault, child abuse, elder and dependent adult abuse, human trafficking, hate crime and other violent crimes. All services are free of charge, confidential, and available whether you have reported to law enforcement or not. The VCFJC can be reached at (805) 652-7655. Click here to read a press release from the Ventura County District Attorney describing the services available from the VCFJC.

Support Resources

  • Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN): rainn.org
  • Ventura County Family Justice Center: 805 652 7655 / vcfjc.org
  • National Sexual Assault Hotline: 800-656-4673
  • National Sexual Violence Resource Center: www.nsvrc.org
Notice of nondiscriminatory policy as to students: The Thacher School admits students of any race, color, national, and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the School. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national, and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admission policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other School-administered programs.