Outrage Sparks After White HBCU President Cleared Of Wrongdoing In Black Administrator’s Suicide

After a period of paid leave following the tragic death of Antoinette “Bonnie” Candia-Bailey, Lincoln University President John Moseley has returned to his duties at the HBCU. 

Candia-Bailey, 49, who served as the vice president of student affairs under Moseley’s leadership, took her own life on January 8. This happened just days after raising allegations of intimidation and mental distress against Moseley in an email to the university’s Board of Curators and other stakeholders.

Candia-Bailey claimed Moseley’s attitude towards her changed for the worse after she told him that she was diagnosed with severe depression and anxiety, prompting her to request time off under the Family Medical Leave Act. Moseley refused the request. 

The investigation found that the university did not violate the Americans with Disabilities Act by not accommodating Candia-Bailey’s mental health needs, noting that she was not eligible for medical leave because she had not been at the university for a full year.

The circumstances surrounding Candia-Bailey’s death prompted an independent investigation into the allegations against President Moseley. The investigation, which concluded recently, found no evidence to substantiate claims of bullying or harassment by the HBCU President, thereby clearing his name of any wrongdoing in the matter.

Victor Pasley, President of the university’s Board of Curators said, “For us, this report is not the end of a process, but rather the beginning of one,” Pasley wrote. “None of its findings have led the Board to doubt President Moseley’s ability to lead the University, but this tragedy has forced us to grapple more fully with issues facing Lincoln and our individual students and employees — ranging from mental health support to employee work and relationships.”

The decision to reinstate Moseley has garnered outrage on social media, some voicing their concerns about the broader issues of protecting and believing Black women. 

“I hope the Board of Curators at Lincoln University never know peace again,” wrote Je’lon Alexander, a 2021 graduate of Morehouse in Atlanta, in a post to the platform X. “To allow this white man to remain president at an HBCU after evidence of him bullying Dr. Antoinette Candia-Bailey where she committed suicide is pure evil. Believe and listen to Black Women!!”

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