US gymnastics boss resigns over massive sex abuse scandal
Steve Penny has resigned as president of USA Gymnastics following intensified pressure on the organization for its handling of sex abuse cases.
The resignation came a week after the United States Olympic Committee’s board sent a recommendation to USA Gymnastics chairman Paul Parilla requesting Penny step down.
The organization said Penny informed them of the decision in a conference call.
Penny joined USA Gymnastics in 1999 and was named the organization’s president in 2005, overseeing one of the greatest runs in Olympic history. Led by national team coordinator Martha Karolyi, the women’s program has become a dominant force, producing each of the last four Olympic all-around champions and team golds in 2012 and 2016. The success turned gymnasts like Simone Biles, Gabby Douglas, Nastia Liukin and Shawn Johnson into stars and made USA Gymnastics a magnet for big-time corporate sponsors who wanted to be aligned with its healthy, winning image.
That image took a serious hit in recent months following an in-depth investigation by the Indianapolis Star that portrayed USA Gymnastics as slow to act when it came to addressing allegations of sexual abuse.