Reginald Richardson, former Salem-Keizer NAACP president, has been removed from his position as executive director of Oregon’s Alcohol and Drug Policy Commission.
Richardson pled guilty to physically assaulting an 8-year-old boy at the Career Technical Education Center in northeast Salem during an after-school program run by his company, Community Learning Institute.
Richardson has been banned from Salem-Keizer Public Schools facilities in February and his contract to run a program focused on academic support for Black students was terminated, according to the Salem Reporter, which first reported the story.
Salem-Keizer Public Schools did not respond to the Statesman Journal’s request for information about the incident.
According to court records, Richardson assaulted and injured the boy Jan. 26. He entered a guilty plea Oct. 20 and was sentenced to attend counseling sessions focused on anger management issues and alternative options for addressing challenging behavior from children. Richardson will also have to complete 100 hours of community service and have no contact with the victim or his brother, who was also a part of the program.
He was fined $1,000, which he has paid.
Removal from state position
Gov. Kate Brown appointed Richardson to the state commission role in 2018. He was still listed on the state government website as executive director on Dec. 14, two months after he pleaded guilty.
When asked about his employment status with the state, the Governor’s Office replied to the Statesman Journal on Dec. 15 saying he had been removed from his position with the state of Oregon effective that day.
“You are employed as the director of the Alcohol and Drug Policy Commission in the unclassified (executive) service. Under the law, this position is appointed by the governor and serves at their pleasure. This letter informs you that the governor has exercised her authority to end your appointment effective December 15, 2022,” reads the letter dated Dec. 12 and sent from Brown’s office to Richardson.
The letter adds that the Governor’s Office made repeated efforts to reach Richardson “during recent days” but did not hear back.
The Governor’s Office will not be commenting further, they said, “because this is a personnel matter.”
Richardson was elected president of the Salem-Keizer NAACP in late 2020 following a decade of leadership by Benny Williams.
Richardson, who came to Oregon in 2015 after a career at Northwestern University in Illinois, had served as vice president of the branch for two years.
At the time of his election to president, he said his main goals for the organization were transparency, relevancy and outreach to younger residents.
It’s unclear when he stepped down or was removed from that position, but the organization’s website shows RJ Hampton won a November election for the position and he’s now listed as president on the site.