- Investment management firm Franklin Templeton’s board member John B. Wilson was removed after he was among dozens of people indicted by the FBI on Tuesday in an alleged college admissions bribery scheme.
- Wilson served as the lead independent trustee of 112 portfolios in the fund complex of Franklin Templeton Funds. He was also the designated financial expert of Franklin Funds’ audit committee.
Franklin Templeton’s board member John B. Wilson was removed, a company spokesperson confirmed, after he was among dozens of executives and Hollywood stars indicted by the FBI in an alleged college admissions bribery scheme.
Wilson served as the lead independent trustee of 112 portfolios in the fund complex of Franklin Templeton Funds. He was also the designated financial expert of Franklin Funds’ audit committee. Wilson had been named a trustee of Franklin Funds since 2006 and lead independent trustee since 2008.
Wilson is also the president and CEO of Hyannis Port Capital, a consulting and private-equity firm investing in micro-cap private companies. The company didn’t reply to a request for comment from Business Insider.
In the recently unveiled college bribery scheme, Wilson was accused of conspiring to “bribe Jovan Vavic, the USC water polo coach, to designate his son as a purported recruit to the USC men’s water polo team, thereby facilitating his admission to USC,” according to court documents. He also “sought to use bribes to obtain the admission of his two daughters to Stanford University and Harvard University as recruited athletes,” according to the documents.
Wilson was charged with “conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud” in the Southern District Court of Texas.
Franklin Templeton has already found Wilson’s replacement.
Current independent trustee Edith E. Holiday was named lead independent trustee, and current independent trustee, Terrence J. Checki was named Chair of the Audit Committees, the company spokesperson said.
High-flying financiers and Hollywood celebrities are among those accused of paying bribes to get their children into elite universities including Georgetown, Stanford, and Yale. Some parents are accused of having their children recruited as Division 1 athletes, regardless of athletic abilities, while others are accused of having stand-ins take SAT and ACT exams for their children.
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