Franco Harris Remains On Board, Steps Aside As Chairman

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Standing up for his mentor Joe Paterno has already cost Franco Harris an endorsement with the Meadows Racetrack and Casino.

Mayor Luke Ravenstahl said that it should also cost him his position as chairman of the board of the Pittsburgh Promise.

The board of directors met for four hours Thursday night behind closed doors in the Hill District. Pittsburgh Promise Executive Director Saleem Ghubril said that Harris will remain on the board as a full voting member, but voluntarily stepped aside as board chairman.

KDKA’s Ralph Iannotti reports:

The new board chairman is David Malone, president and CEO of Gateway Financial.

“It was quite a meeting, but we have some great board members,” Harris said.

Before the meeting, Harris didn’t back down in his support for Paterno.

“Joe Paterno – this guy – high morals – and this guy is tough,” he said. “And I tell people that if he was in charge of the investigation, believe me, things would have got done, but he was not in charge of it.”

After the meeting, Mayor Ravenstahl told reporters that he was satisfied all board members were committed to helping victims of sexual abuse.

KDKA’s Ralph Iannotti asked Ravenstahl if some of his criticism of Harris had anything to do with the fact that Harris’ son Dok ran against him in the 2009 election.

“That’s so far from the truth – Franco knows that,” Ravenstahl said. “I made Franco the chair of this board when it started. Franco remained the chair of this board while his son ran against me for mayor.”

KDKA’s Heather Abraham reports:

Meanwhile, in State College, Penn State’s Acting Athletic Director Dr. David Joyner will be holding a news conference at 10:30 a.m. in the Schwab Auditorium.

Stay with KDKA for the latest developments.

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One Comment

  1. steeler fan says:

    Luke should step down as major for this one. What a idiot!!!!

    1. William Dunmire says:

      Agree. Franco has done more by accident than the mayor has by design. The nutcase walked away from a wife and child to stay in the spotlight.

  2. Belinda Brova says:

    The Kid Mayor of Pittsburgh has made a ridiculous statement requesting a class human being like Franco Harris to resign over his support for Joe Paterno. Both gentlemen are respected in the state/world community for thousands of selfless acts and the promoting of values that are endeared by the common man. Mr. Harris’s support for Coach Paterno is rooted in only what I can surmise as decades of friendship and mentoring. I am sure Franco has insight into Joe’s true character and personality unlike the biased opinions of the media

  3. critter says:

    Mayor is typical democrat WIMP

    1. Sfc Guido says:

      I don’t think this an issue of Democrat or Republican…for the most part, politicians in general are gutless asshats…

  4. Danny says:

    So, I guess all the men a women who have served and died for our right of free speech have done so in vane! When has this country become so meek!
    Now you cannot voice your opinion with out worrying about loosing your job. Punish the person that did the deed, not the people who voice their opinion! The person who did the raping of boy is walking around free.

  5. Vern says:

    Poor Rocky, he lost his half of the Meadows deal and he didn’t say a word

  6. MAC says:


  7. DCR says:

    LOL. Luke. You are such a hypocrite. This is Pittsburgh. We know what you are up to when you are not at City Hall. Grow-up!

  8. Sfc Guido says:

    An open letter to the Boy Mayor and the Meadows:

    ARE YOU GUYS REALLY THAT STUPID?!?!?!?!?!?! If I’m reading this correctly, you want to punish somebody on the extreme periphery of an event for having an opinion and coming to the defense of somebody from their past who played a big part in molding who that person became. You’re punishing Franco for Paterno’s “sin of ommision”; and that is exactly what it was. That is like punishing the son for the sins of the father. Luke, (when someone acts this moronically, I don’t feel the need to address the moron in question by his title) You make me ashamed to be from Pittsburgh.

  9. Netta Betta says:

    This is just to get back at Franco because his son ran against Luke…Wah Wah Wah Luke. Grow up!
    Maybe the city residents should send Luke a letter and ask him to step down for everything he has done.

  10. Whatever says:

    We feel the same about you Luke. You wouldnt make a good mayor in any city let alone Pittsburgh!

  11. Henrietta says:

    Seriously when did we give up the right to the “Freedom of Free Speech”?? So what, if we don’t all jump on the band wagon then we are wrong and should be crucified! I get so sick of this BS. Mr. Harris please do not give up without a fight, do not let these idiots run you out of town, just because they don’t have a backbone.

  12. Insider says:

    Could it be to keep Frano’s son form running again for mayor?

  13. gremlin says:

    Franco has done more for this city than this Mayor ever will! GO FRANCO! And he’s been doing it since before the young mayor has been born!

  14. Sfc Guido says:

    I met Franco three years ago when I arrived here in Korea. He was doing a personnal appearance/autograph session at the Commisary on Yongsan Base in Seoul (anyone who has been stationed here in Korea know what I’m talking about). Franco was one of the classiest people I’ve every had the chance to meet, WILLINGLY spending as much time with each person who came for an autograph or picture as that peron wanted. Hey Luke, quit messing with someone who has more class in the nail of his little toe than you have in your entire body….putz.

  15. Jim says:

    It seems to me that Franco is being punished more than the alleged perpetrator of this crime. Jerry Sandusky is out walking around and Franco may be the verge of losing his second job in as many days. What every happened to free speech. Franco has done nothing but good things for the city and should be allowed to keep doing them. The Mayor is a nut.

  16. A franco fan says:

    Franco is a great human being.He has done more for the city of pittsburgh than luke ever has.Just because luke is mayor he thinks he throw his weight around.Sticking up for ones former college coach is commendable in my book.Go franco.We are behind you 100%

  17. Insider says:

    When the dirt finally settles at Happy Valley Franco will wish he had never met Joe Paterno. Old Joe will be lucky if he dose not go to jail. The sorry story is just beginning.

  18. Concerned Citizen of Pittsburgh says:

    I agree with a lot of the people here.. This is just down right wrong. The sick individual that did this is doing T.V. interviews and walking around free. While the people that are showing support for a man that until recently we held in very high regards. And why have we turned our back on him.. cause he like the rest of us was fooled by this again sick individual and his unspeakable actions. From what I understand he followed what he was supposed to do. SO if that wasn’t enough change your stupid policies and fix the real problems.
    And Mr. Ravenstahl should mind his own business and worry about much bigger problems then someone using there given right of freedom of speech. What exactly has our society come to?? We scream and yell, protest, stomp our feet, if someone anyone tells us we can’t express ourselves yet we condeem those who do!? We are all a bunch of hypocrites!!

  19. Sfc Guido says:

    “It is my ethical and moral responsibility…” really…ethical and moral? Hey Lukey…where are your wife and kid?

  20. 412 says:

    Is this not a free country anymore? Franco did nothing wrong but express how he felt. What is the world coming too … The Steel City is behind you.

  21. pennstatefan says:

    The Mayor should take a look at himself. There is nothing ethical or moral about his character. The great thing about this country is Freedom of Speech! Go Franco!! Go PSU!!! Shame on the media also for turning this into a circus.

Comments are closed.

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