FRANKLIN COUNTY (WCMH) – Governor Mike DeWine has released a statement regarding the social media controversy swirling around Ohio Arts Council member Susan Allen Block.
“Today I accepted the resignation of Susan Allan Block from the Ohio Arts Council,” the statement read.
Donna S. Collins, executive director of the OAC, released the following statement following Block’s resignation from the board.
“As I shared yesterday, agency staff does not comment on the personal opinions of its sitting board members. However, Susan is no longer on the board, so let me now say this.
“Our agency does not condone or endorse these inflammatory opinions in any way, and we will continue to work in alignment with our shared values of diversity, equity, and inclusivity.”
The Columbus Museum of Art joined the Greater Columbus Arts Council Friday urging Governor DeWine to remove Block from the OAC Board and condemn “incendiary hate speech.”
In a Facebook comment, Block wrote “THERE WILL BE NO ‘HEALING,'” regarding the presidential election. “WE WILL DRAG THIS ILLEGITIMATE PRESIDENT, HIS **** VP AND ALL OF THE DEMOCRATS THROUGH THE SAME **** THEY DRAGGED PRESIDENT TRUMP & HIS SUPPORTERS THROUGH FOR THE LAST 5 YEARS!”
In its letter to the Governor, GCAC President & CEO Tom Katzenmeyer wrote:
“I am writing this morning to request the immediate removal of Susan Block, your appointment to the Ohio Arts Council Board.
“Incendiary hate speech… cannot be tolerated in Ohio, let alone by a high-ranking government appointee.”
Ohio Representative Casey Weinstein shared Block’s comment on his Twitter, also calling for Ohio Governor DeWine to remove Block from the Arts Council.
The governor’s office responded to that Tweet saying, “Susan Block’s comments are highly offensive and do not represent the views of this administration.”