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Alleged Harasser Gets Honorific Title At UC Berkeley

After resigning, Geoff Marcy has a new title, the university confirmed.

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Early Friday morning, some scientists on Twitter noticed that astronomer Geoff Marcy, who resigned from the University of California, Berkeley, in October after a sexual harassment scandal, is now calling himself "Professor Emeritus" at the university.

Did @UCBerkeley really grant Geoff Marcy honor of an emeritus professorship after he resigned in disgrace? #astroSH

Marcy is listing himself as an emeritus professor from Berkeley. WTH? #astroSH

"Yes, it’s true," Berkeley spokesman Dan Mogulof told BuzzFeed News. "As per a standing Regents order, he can call himself an Emeritus. Having said that, he doesn’t have an office, and will not have an office. He's not teaching, and never will in the future."

Last year, a university investigation found that Marcy had violated Berkeley’s sexual harassment policies in several cases between 2001 and 2010. He was not sanctioned by the university, but stepped down after the public outcry that followed a BuzzFeed News story about the investigation.

Since Marcy resigned, and was not fired, the title of emeritus professor was conferred automatically. The honorific title "shall be conferred, upon retirement, on every Professor and Associate Professor," according to the University of California's governing rulebook.

As Mogulof noted last month, no tenured faculty member has ever been terminated from Berkeley.

Asked whether anyone could have interfered in the process of bestowing the honorific title, Mogulof noted, "Once we went down the path we went down, there just wasn’t an option."

Azeen Ghorayshi is a science reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York. Her PGP Fingerprint is 9739 9DAE 607E A66A 3683 AC20 E34B D2A0 8899 74C4

Contact Azeen Ghorayshi at

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