Former University of Texas at Arlington (UTA) Vice President for Student Affairs Lisa Nagy left her position amid an investigation into her acceptance of personal favors from REV Entertainment while negotiating a contract to host commencement ceremonies at Globe Life Field, according to UT Arlington’s The Shorthorn newspaper.. The investigation followed an anonymous hotline complaint to University Compliance Services on November 2, 2022.
Documents obtained through an open records request revealed that Nagy had violated university and state ethics policies by accepting event tickets from REV Entertainment between 2021 and 2022. As vice president for Student Affairs, Nagy was responsible for recommending potential rental facility venues for commencement ceremonies and negotiating contracts with venue managers.
According to the investigation by the University, accessed by the newspaper via a Freedom of Information Act request, Nagy almost certainly would not have had access to the tickets and suites given to her had she not been the person in charge of the university’s commencement and other event contracts. “In contrast, it is highly unlikely that just any employee could have contacted REV and been extended the same courtesies simply because they worked at UTA,” the investigation continued.
UTA’s Dishonest Fraudulent Activities Policy and Contract Management Handbook require employees to maintain high ethical standards and avoid accepting gifts, favors, or services that may influence their official duties. The investigation found that Nagy may have violated UTA’s Standards of Conduct Policy, which holds employees accountable for upholding university conduct standards, as well as applicable federal and state laws.
Nagy, who had been with UTA for over 20 years, received a salary of $272,954 for the 2021-2022 academic year. The Division of Student Affairs consists of 22 departments and programs, about 200 staff members, and nearly 330 student organizations.
Stephanie McAlpine, former director for Communications, Planning and Operations for the Division of Student Affairs, also departed UTA shortly after Nagy. McAlpine served as the principal facilitator for interactions between REV Entertainment and UTA.
UTA rented Globe Life Field for commencement ceremonies in May 2021, December 2021, and signed a $1.3 million contract for ceremonies in fall 2022, spring 2023, and fall 2023. Documents revealed that UTA planned to extend the rental agreement through spring 2025.
Nagy acknowledged receiving tickets to various events during the investigation but stated they did not impact negotiations with Globe Life Field. She was found to have been provided tickets and suite access to at least five events during the course of the investigation. Among them were free tickets to a 2021 Chris Stapleton contest and a 2022 Lady Gaga concert that took place five weeks before the contract was signed. Ten days after it was signed, Nagy attended a Morgan Wallen concert where she reportedly had tried and failed to get tickets herself through the general ticket sales process, but was able to score passes through what must have been a tranche of held-back tickets that REV Entertainment had access to.
All tickets received showed a $0 face value, and included other amenities like parking and suite access. Staff members of the university Student Affairs office also received tickets to a Green Day concert in 2021 and Motley Crue concert in 2022 from the promoter.
The events demonstrate an “ongoing and consistent pattern of conduct by Ms. Nagy,” according to the investigation. “Furthermore, misuse could continue since UTA is contemplating extending the GLF Contract with REV to the spring of 2025.”
Last Updated on May 1, 2023 by Dave Clark