Ever wonder why Louisiana and its flagship university always land near the bottom of most national rankings? Look no further than the story of Ivor van Heerden.
Professor van Heerden was the director of LSU’s hurricane center. That was, until LSU wrongfully terminated him. The higher ups – you know, the geniuses that delivered us this substandard university in the first place – were scared that the Feds would cut off funding for other LSU programs because Dr. van Heerden exposed the Army Corps of Engineers’ and Federal Government’s poorly engineered flood protection system surrounding metro New Orleans.
Van Heerden was the one guy making sense of it all. He was the voice of reason. One of the very few credible people who told us what went wrong and why. So LSU fired him. Instead of backing up one of the storms most credible sources, LSU let’s him go.
Well, not so fast. Van Heerden didn’t go away so easily. He continued to tell the truth and, just this week, picked up a nice check from LSU for nearly half a million bucks.
Wrongful firing. A defamation of character lawsuit settlement. Van Heerden was asked if his termination from LSU was worth it.
“Those levees should never have failed,” van Heerden said. “Over half-a-million people lost everything overnight through no fault of their own. I spoke up on their behalf.”
LSU should have done the same for Ivor van Heerden.