KU hires director to lead office overseeing discrimination and sex assault cases

Michael “Shane” McCreery is KU’s new director of the office of Institutional Opportunity and Access.
Michael “Shane” McCreery is KU’s new director of the office of Institutional Opportunity and Access. University of Kansas

With several sexual assault-related lawsuits pending against the University of Kansas, school leaders have hired a new Title IX director to lead its office of Institutional Opportunity and Access.

Michael “Shane” McCreery, who for the past 12 years has been director of the Office of Equal Opportunity, Ethics and Access at Illinois State University, was hired by KU after a national search.

The office of Institutional Opportunity and Access is responsible for investigating complaints of discrimination and harassment, including issues dealing with race, color, ethnicity, religion, disability, gender and sex, and sexual violence.

Title IX is the federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any publicly funded education program or activity.

McCreery begins his leadership role on Sept. 1. He takes over from Joshua Jones, who has been filling the role on an interim basis since October 2015.

“Shane emerged from a very strong applicant pool because of his extensive experience as an equal opportunity leader and as a Title IX coordinator,” Mike Rounds, associate vice provost for Human Resource Management said in a news release on Friday.

Three sexual assault-related law suits have been filed against KU this year. Two involve members of the rowing team who say they were raped by the same KU football player and that the university failed to protect them. A third lawsuit was filed by one of the rower’s parents, claiming the university falsely advertises a safe campus residence life.

In response the university has said it takes claims of sexual assault and sexual violence seriously, but declined to discuss details of either rower’s claims.

The former football player accused of assaulting both women was expelled last spring after a university investigation in to the claims lobbed against him. He did not face criminal charges, and his name was never released by the university or mentioned in the lawsuits.

The university of Kansas has two complaints of Title IX violation being investigated by the federal government. A third case filed in 2011 has been resolved.

Mará Rose Williams: 816-234-4419, @marawilliamskc