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University of Michigan president addresses protest outside his home for first time

Former running back, Anderson survivor Jon Vaughn says president has yet to speak with him personally

Former University of Michigan running back and Dr. Robert Anderson survivor Jon Vaughn is nearly two weeks into his protest outside university president Mark Schlissel’s home Schlissel acknowledged the protest at Thursday’s Board of Regents meeting. But his comments did nothing to deter Vaughn.

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Former University of Michigan running back and Dr. Robert Anderson survivor Jon Vaughn is nearly two weeks into his protest outside university President Mark Schlissel’s home

Schlissel acknowledged the protest at Thursday’s Board of Regents meeting. But his comments did nothing to deter Vaughn.

More: ‘Hail to the victims’: Dozens protest outside University of Michigan president’s Ann Arbor home

A reason being that Schlissel made the comments at U of M Flint and has yet to speak to Vaughn.

“You drive 55 miles and you can mention my presence but you can’t acknowledge my presence personally,” Vaughn said.

Vaughn’s protest has only gained more resolve by what he heard at Thursday’s meeting.

“Through public comment sessions with investigators, to the news media, and in demonstrations -- including the one on the Ann Arbor campus in front of my house -- the regents and I have heard them. We’re listening intently and encourage any survivors to speak out. We value their voices,” Schlissel said.

Read: Mark Schlissel to end tenure as University of Michigan president 1 year early, in June 2023

But Vaughn said actions speak louder than words. The longer the protest goes, the more support it gets.

Not only is he joined daily by other Anderson survivors but some Nassar survivors and often current Michigan students who are victims of rape and abuse.

“Each and every student that comes by and talks and shares their story, gives me another day. And they forget that back in 1988 is when they started to build me for a challenge physically and mentally like this ... A Michigan man,” Vaughn said.

Local 4 reached to Schlissel, who declined to comment.

The university said Vaughn has had opportunities to speak to the president and Board of Regents at a few meetings, including Thursday’s. They said Vaughn declined but is still welcome to come to the next meeting in December.

Read: Survivors of Nassar, Anderson push for change in Lansing


University of Michigan report shows more than 2,100 claims of abuse by Dr. Robert Anderson

The University of Michigan’s annual security and fire safety report saw a huge jump in sex crimes in 2020. As the report explains, it’s attributable to the complaints filed against Dr. Robert Anderson once the investigation went public.

Of the 1,212 rape accusations, 1,194 were against Anderson. Of the 947 fondling complaints, 916 are against Anderson as well as one off-campus rape.

The university said these are 2,111 reports of abuse and not unique victims.

The report also notes that much of the reporting on Anderson’s abuse was done through anonymous reporting platforms and used vague language, making it difficult to get exact numbers. In some cases, the reports that were vague and anonymous did not allow the university to follow up to detail where and when and how often, or if reported abuses were duplicated.

Click here to read more.


About the Author:

Jason anchors Local 4's 5:30 p.m. newscast. He joined WDIV in January 2015 as a general assignment reporter and has a Journalism degree from Michigan State University.