JCOPE Settles Alleged Ethics Violation with Former SUNY Downstate Medical Center Chief
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Ex-President Admits to Improper Use of State Credit Card

The New York State Joint Commission on Public Ethics (“Commission”) today announced that it has settled with the former president of SUNY Downstate Medical Center for a violation of the Public Officers Law.

John F. Williams, Jr., who led the state academic medical center from 2012 until his resignation in June 2016, agreed to pay a $3,000 fine and admitted that he used his position and his state credit card in July 2014 to pay for a portion of what turned into a personal trip to Bermuda.

Mr. Williams’ travel was originally slated to include a business-related conference, as well as a birthday celebration for an executive of a contracted vendor of SUNY Downstate. The conference was ultimately cancelled, but a charge for airfare was nonetheless made to his state-issued credit card. After the charge was discovered as part of an audit by the Office of the State Comptroller, Williams reimbursed the state for the cost of the airfare.

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