The chief photographer of the University of Tennessee (UT) Athletics Department has been accused of "abus[ing] university work time and equipment for his personal benefit" by getting paid to photograph non-UT athletes for other schools while working for UT.
The office of the Tennessee Comptroller of the Treasury released the findings of an investigation into the photographer, named by a source close to the investigation as Donald Page. The Treasury investigation found that Page used UT equipment and UT student assistants to photograph other universities' athletes during events when he was supposed to be on the job as a UT photographer. For his duplicitous efforts, Page was found to have received at least $9,240 in compensation from outside organizations while on the clock for UT and nearly $6,500 in compensation from outside organizations during off-hours. The investigation reviewed records from February 2014 through June 2017.
The Treasury report concludes that Page's actions may not have necessarily violated university policy but at least "resulted in a waste and/or abuse of taxpayer funds." The University of Tennessee is a public school, paid for by the taxpaying public. Page is a state employee with a reported salary of $56,661 per year.
Page has been on paid administrative leave since June 15, 2017 and his employment status is uncertain, potentially pending the results of a further investigation or hearing by the university.
Lead image by Joel Kramer (Creative Commons 2.0 license)