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Harvard strips Harvey Weinstein’s former lawyer of deanship

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Harvard strips Harvey Weinstein’s former lawyer of deanship

Harvard decided not to renew the dean position of Professor Ronald S. Sullivan Jr. and his wife, Harvard law lecturer Stephanie Robinson at Winthrop House, an undergraduate house of the college, reported CNN.

How we got here: In January 2019, Sullivan, known for being a voice for the unfairly incarcerated, joined the legal team defending Harvey Weinstein, a film executive who is facing sexual assault charges. His decision caused an uproar at the university with many students protesting his move and demanding his removal. Sullivan responded by explaining to students in an email that even the "guilty, unpopular, vile or undesirable" have rights and deserve a fair trial.

The letter: "Over the last few weeks, students and staff have continued to communicate concerns about the climate in Winthrop House to the college. The concerns expressed have been serious and numerous. This decision in no way lessens my gratitude to them for their contributions to the college," wrote Harvard College Dean Rakesh Khurana.

The announcement comes after Sullivan notified a Manhattan judge that he will be leaving Weinstein's defense team, reported ABC News.

The response: "We are surprised and dismayed by the action Harvard announced today. We believed the discussions we were having with high-level University representatives were progressing in a positive manner, but Harvard unilaterally ended those talks. We are sorry that Harvard's actions and the controversy surrounding us have contributed to the stress on Winthrop students at this already stressful time."