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Former Lon Morris president “denies generally” Texas AG’s accusations about school’s downfall

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BY KELLY GOOCH
kgooch@tylerpaper.com

JACKSONVILLE (TYLER MORNING TELEGRAPH) - Former Lon Morris College President Dr. Miles McCall "denies generally" various accusations from the Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, who has claimed that his actions factored into the school's downfall, according to a response from McCall.

McCall filed the response Monday in Travis County. The short document states McCall "denies generally all of the material allegations contained in (the) attorney general's original petition" and asks that the attorney general "be required to prove the claims against him."

Lauren Bean, deputy communications director with the Texas Attorney General's Office, said via email last week that McCall had until today to file a response to the state's lawsuit against him "for gross mismanagement of the college."

In the lawsuit, filed Feb. 13 in Travis County, the attorney general alleges "breach of fiduciary duty" and "negligent management."

The lawsuit asserts that McCall "failed to oversee the management of Lon Morris College in a prudent and reasonable manner" and "jeopardized the institution and its charitable educational purpose, and knowingly and repeatedly placed its charitable assets at extreme risk."

"In managing the college, McCall took unreasonable risks in accumulating debt without an adequate plan to service that debt, which eventually led to the closing of the 158-year-old charitable institution," Abbott wrote.

He added, "McCall oversaw the liquidation and pledging of endowment funds as collateral for debt, at times in a manner that conflicted with the college's governing instrument and the intent of donors and trust agreements."

When reached by phone last month, McCall repeatedly said he "can't make any comments" in regard to the legal matters.

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