Posted Tuesday, May 1 3:04 p.m.
The former dean of GW’s largest undergraduate college was fired from his job as president of the University of Mary Washington yesterday.
William Frawley, 53, served as the dean of the Columbian College from 2002 to 2006. He left GW last spring to become president of UMW, a public liberal arts college with 4,000 undergraduates in Fredericksburg, Va. In April, Frawley was arrested twice on charges of driving under the influence of alcohol and he was placed on temporary leave at UMW.
Frawley was first arrested for DUI after overturning his car on the way to his son’s school, according to news reports. He was hospitalized, but left the hospital against his doctor’s advice the next morning.
A day after the arrest, Frawley was seen driving erratically in a car missing a front tire, according to police reports. Police followed him for 10 blocks with their lights flashing until he finally stopped at his University-owned home. He was charged with DUI and refusal to submit to a blood or breath test.
The Board of Visitors, UMW’s governing body, released a statement yesterday announcing that they would terminate Frawley effective immediately, citing its “obligations to the Commonwealth of Virginia.”
Frawley’s wife, Maria Frawley, is an associate English professor at GW. She did not return a call from The Hatchet as of Tuesday afternoon.
Faye Moskowitz, a professor of English and friend of the Frawley family, said she was surprised to hear the news yesterday.
“This is a very, very sad situation and there are many people here on campus at GW who have enormous respect for Bill Frawley, and who are shocked at what happened, and to be honest are shocked by the way he is being treated by Mary Washington,” Moskowitz said. She added that she had never seen Frawley drink, and said she did not know whether he is an alcoholic.
William Griffith, chair of GW’s philosophy department, said that the behavior is surprising.
“Aberrant behavior was clearly out of character (for Frawley),” Griffith said. “He wasn’t one of those people who went off the deep end on occasions.he was on the straight and narrow.”
Frawley, who was a linguistics professor, taught at the University of Delaware for 23 years before coming to GW, according to a University press release.