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Peter Kerwin fired from RIHEAA position

April 23, 2012

Peter Kerwin, a longtime Rhode Island government official and former press secretary for the secretary of state’s office, has been dismissed from his job as chief of program development for the Rhode Island Higher Education Assistance Authority.

Kerwin says he was dismissed from the $72,000-a year job by the RIHEAA board last Friday on a 3 to 2 vote of the agency board. The three votes to fire him, Kerwin says, came from three board members who also serve on the board of the Rhode Island Student Loan Authority. One of those three votes, Kerwin states, came from a designee of state General Treasurer Gina Raimondo.

Kerwin says his firing was “a clear act of retribution for my activities as a whistle-blower’’’ and a “continued pattern of harassment and intimidation’’ by RIHEAA’s Charlie Kelley, the interim coordinating officer.

Rhode Island Public Radio was directed by Raimondo’s office to Joseph Palumbo, lawyer for the RIHEAA. Palumbo did not immediately return  a telephone call to us.

Kerwin says his lawyer is filing an appeal to the state personnel board and considering other legal action.


9 Comments leave one →
  1. Joseph F permalink
    April 23, 2012 8:10 pm

    One less hack on the state’s payroll. Thank you Treasurer Raimondo! Don’t stop there.

    • Mister Guy permalink
      April 24, 2012 1:49 am

      Ummmm…you do realize that they’ll likely just hire someone else to replace Mr. Kerwin, don’t you?

  2. Jay robers permalink
    April 23, 2012 10:44 pm

    Why hasn’t the treasures representative commented? Shame on them!

  3. Al DeP permalink
    April 23, 2012 11:13 pm

    Something the Treasurer’s office won’t comment on? Must be something wrong going on if she’s not trying to take credit for it….

  4. Joseph F permalink
    April 24, 2012 5:47 pm

    @Mister Guy: I looked this guy Kerwin up and it seems he was a hack placed there during the Caprio days. And if he had responsibility for the 529 plan for RI, he should have been canned a long time ago. That program is a disgrace!

    • Joe S permalink
      April 24, 2012 7:25 pm

      @joseph F: looked him up? that’s a good one.

    • Mister Guy permalink
      April 24, 2012 8:17 pm

      Are they going to get rid of that program? If not, then nothing has been saved in firing this guy, whether he did a good job or not.

  5. Joe S permalink
    April 24, 2012 7:19 pm

    This guy filed an open meetings complaint with the AG last August according to ProJo. Where is the AG’s office on this? Looks like another RI cover-up. Not to mention a vote to terminate from a designee of the Treasurer’s office?? Do the math….not only it a disgrace how is it even legal?


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