The Journal News has significantly advanced the "Sister Susie" story and even credited Talk of the Sound and the Chronicle of Higher Education for first reporting the story.
Having been critical of the Journal News last week -- online and over the WVOX airwaves -- Talk of the Sound wants to credit the Journal News and their reporters -- Jonathon Bandler, Aman Ali and Noreen O'Donnell -- for what has become a full court press. The story now has the makings of becoming a national news story. The off-handed comment by former Iona College Coach Jeff Ruland that "Sister Susie" had "absconded with some funds or something down to Atlantic City" may prove irresistible to the national media. A question that may be asked was whether Sister Susie was betting on sports and in particular Iona College men's basketball.
Here are some of they key points developed by the Journal News over the past week:
1. A memo to Iona College faculty from Brother Liguori in May 2009 stated that Sister Maria Thornton "would be on leave for six months and then would no longer be with Iona".
3. Jeff Ruland made a comment to Mike Francesca on WFAN last March that suggests that "Sister Susie" had a gambling problem.
Ruland, a harsh critic of Liguori, was discussing his dismissal from the school and made a passing reference to the school firing Sister Susie. "I think she absconded with some funds or something down to Atlantic City, but that's neither here nor there," he said with a laugh.
4. KPMG was the auditor for Iona College at the time.
5. Sister Anne Myers of the Sisters of Saint Joseph, "Sister Susie's" order issued a statement today.
"The Sisters of Saint Joseph are committed to a mission of unity of all people with God and one another, therefore we hope for a just resolution to this situation involving Sister Marie Thornton who was an employee of Iona College." Asked about her whereabouts, Myers said "She's in a place of rest and recovery".
UPDATE: "Holy Embezzlement" -- WCBS-TV Channel 2 News picked up the story. They interviewed Andrea Fuller from the Chronicle of Higher Education who we interviewed last week on Talk of the Sound Radio on WVOX.