School board member Lanning fired from Missouri nonprofit after harassment charges, viral video

(The Lion) — A Missouri school board member was fired from her nonprofit job weeks after criminal charges for harassment were filed against her and following calls for her resignation.

Whitney Lanning, a school board member of the St. Joseph School District (SJSD), confirmed to local media Wednesday that she was fired from her role as executive director at the Community Action Partnership of Greater St. Joseph (CAPSTJOE).

Lanning said she was “disappointed” about the decision.

CAPSTJOE’s board chairwoman, Megan Kennedy-Stickley, declined to comment to local media on what she referred to as a “personnel matters.”

Lanning has been embroiled in controversy since February, when she allegedly verbally harassed a fellow SJSD school board member after a board meeting. Video of the incident was published on social media and reported by local media.

Lanning is facing charges of second-degree criminal harassment for the profane tirade, which included numerous f-bombs and threats of violence against board member Isaura Garcia.

Critics have repeatedly called for Lanning to resign both from CAPSTJOE and the school board.

Questions have also been raised about whether Lanning’s dual roles amounted to a conflict of interest in part because CAPSTJOE has a contract with the school district.

While Lanning will no longer work with both organizations, school board president LaTonya Williams continues to serve as CAPSTJOE’s board treasurer.

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