Fallout

10.18.12

Dinesh D’Souza Resigns Presidency of The King’s College

Amid scandal over his engagement to a much younger woman and dissatisfaction with his tenure as president, the conservative author and filmmaker is leaving his position at The King’s College.

After a marathon meeting to decide his fate, the board of trustees of The King’s College, a small evangelical school based in Manhattan, announced Thursday that conservative author Dinesh D’Souza had resigned as president. Former president and current chairman Andy Mills, who made the announcement to faculty and staff, will return as interim president for a third time.

"God has a mighty future for Dinesh, but there are some things he has to go through first," Mills said after breaking the news to King's students Thursday afternoon. "I have to admit, I got a bit over-enamored with him." Mills assured students that most of the college's funding and scholarships come from board members, not from D'Souza's connections.

D’Souza came under fire Tuesday when World magazine revealed that he was engaged to a 29-year-old woman while still married to his wife of 20 years. D’Souza and Denise Odie Joseph allegedly shared a hotel room at a Christian conference in September, and D’Souza introduced her as his fiancee.

It was not immediately clear whether the board’s decision was driven by the allegations of the affair, or by dissatisfaction with D’Souza’s leadership that had been building at the college for months. At the meeting Thursday, Mills did not give details of the board's conversation about D’Souza or give reasons for his departure. Representatives for the college did not respond to requests for comment.

According to several sources at the college, members of the King’s faculty and board alike had grown unhappy with D’Souza’s presidency over what they saw as a failure to earn his salary. D’Souza has spent much of the past few months promoting his documentary, 2016: Obama’s America, and his high profile in the media was seen as rarely benefitting the college. It may even have been seen as a detriment: According to a former staffer familiar with the college’s public relations, King’s employees have been explicitly tasked with disentangling D’Souza’s extracurricular activities from the college’s reputation. D’Souza became a non-presence on the college’s official Facebook page throughout 2012, which staffers say was no coincidence.

In two articles published after the board meeting Tuesday by Christianity Today and Fox News, D’Souza lashed out against World’s report on his relationship, denying that he had ever shared a hotel room with Joseph and accusing the magazine of libel.

Editor's Note: This story originally reported that D'Souza's salary was rumored to be $1 million. According to the most recent IRS filings by The King's College, D'Souza received $194,638 in reportable compensation between August 16, 2010 and Aug. 31, 2011, and an estimated additional compensation of $6,886. The reference to the rumored salary has been removed.