FIU shouldn’t de-Frost the art museum

Photo credit: Roberto Jimenez

Billionaire Phillip Frost is in hot water after being accused of participating in a fraud plot by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The plot, involving Frost’s pharmaceutical company OPKO Health and other businessmen, generated more than $27 million and left investors with worthless stock, according to the SEC.

In a statement, OPKO Health said that they weren’t aware that the suit was being filed and were confident that results from a full investigation would come out in their favor.

Frost, who has been called the “most charitable man in Florida,” has made large donations to multiple Miami projects and has a science museum and a music school, named after him and his wife Patricia. FIU’s art museum at the Modesto Maidique campus is also named after them.

With these recent developments, many are wondering whether the buildings named in their honor should be re-named.

In many cases before this, organizations have made the right choice by distancing themselves from disgraced businessmen.

For example, when Papa John’s former CEO, John Schnatter, used racial slurs in a meeting, multiple universities closed their restaurants in protest.

Purdue University took an extra step by removing references to the John H. Schnatter Center for Economic Research and returning a donation to him.

While this stand was brave, the University shouldn’t follow this move when dealing with the museum.

While he may not be the most honest businessman, the money that he and his wife donated came from a place of charity and was given with the intention of building something beautiful and beneficial for students.

While sometimes distancing yourself from those who make mistakes is the right way to go, if the University decides to remove Frost’s name from the museum, it’d be a waste of time and money.

Featured image by Victoria Lynch

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