Southwestern Seminary trustee chair clarifies decision to fire Patterson

Southwestern Seminary trustee chair clarifies decision to fire Patterson

“The unanimous decision by the Executive Committee to immediately terminate Dr. Paige Patterson was prayerfully considered and warranted,” Kevin Ueckert wrote in a statement released late in the day June 1 at

Ueckert, chairman of the board of trustees for Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (SWBTS) in Fort Worth, Texas, provided the clarifying information to help explain the decision to fire Patterson, former president. Among concerns were contradictions in information that was confirmed to be different from what Patterson had shared with the board of trustees.

“We confirmed this week through a student record, made available to me with permission, that an allegation of rape was indeed made by a female student at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (SEBTS) in 2003,” Ueckert said. “This information contradicts a statement previously provided by Dr. Patterson in response to a direct question by a Board member regarding the incident referenced in our May 30 statement. The 2003 rape allegation was never reported to local law enforcement. …

“In addition, as previously disclosed, a female student at SWBTS reported to Dr. Patterson that she had been raped in 2015.  Police were notified of that report. But in connection with that allegation of rape, Dr. Patterson sent an email (the contents of which were shared with the Board on May 22) to the Chief of Campus Security in which Dr. Patterson discussed meeting with the student alone so that he could ‘break her down’ and that he preferred no officials be present. The attitude expressed by Dr. Patterson in that email is antithetical to the core values of our faith and to SWBTS,” Ueckert said. “Moreover, the correlation between what has been reported and also revealed in the student record regarding the 2003 allegation at Southeastern and the contents of this email are undeniable.”

Ueckert also stated that documents belonging to SEBTS were found on the SWBTS campus.

“The documents clearly dealt with Dr. Patterson’s tenure at Southeastern and should have been previously provided. … Shortly after these documents were provided, the wife of Dr. Patterson’s Chief of Staff published a blog and attached these documents without the permission of the students referenced in the documents or appropriate leadership from SEBTS or SWBTS.

“I believe this was inappropriate and unethical,” Ueckert said. “Regardless, the additional documents do not alter the decision of the Executive Committee.

“Ultimately, the decision of the Executive Committee to immediately terminate Dr. Patterson was clear and unanimous.”

Click here to read Ueckert’s full statement. (TAB)