The following statement has been issued by the University of St. Thomas’ Department of Alumni Engagement:
Following multiple reports of sexual misconduct allegations, the University of St. Thomas has rescinded the Distinguished Alumni Award given to David Haas in 1995 and is no longer playing Mr. Haas’ music.
The university has come to this decision after becoming aware of public reports that multiple sexual misconduct allegations of a similar nature have been made against him, and the decisions of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis (original statement, additional statement) and the National Association of Pastoral Musicians related to these allegations. In making our decision, we also considered his statement of apology dated July 9, 2020, and the fact that he has denied the allegations.
Our university convictions include a commitment to respect the dignity of every person, which is fundamental to our Catholic identity. Sexual harassment, sexual assault and other forms of sexual misconduct violate that commitment. The University of St. Thomas takes allegations of sexual misconduct seriously. After a careful assessment of the information available to us, we made our determinations to stop playing Mr. Haas’ music and to rescind the award.
St. Thomas strongly urges anyone who has experienced sexual misconduct connected to St. Thomas to report the misconduct to our Title IX Coordinator, Danielle Hermanny, using this link. St. Thomas responds and offers support and resources to every victim who provides contact information, and provides processes to address reports that involve St. Thomas.