Embattled Saginaw County Animal Control director Lisa Stoffel has resigned from her position after questions were raised about her educational background.
This after Saginaw County Controller Robert Belleman set today as a deadline for Stoffel to get the necessary information to him.
Stoffel confirmed to TV5's David Custer that she submitted her resignation effective July 23, saying, “I need to get my credits found and this situation worked out. I have enrolled in a University."
In a letter to Saginaw County, Stoffel wrote "It is with great sadness that I submit my official resignation from the position of Director at Saginaw County Animal Care & Control. I am, at this time, unable to verify my educational credentials."
TV5 sat down with Stoffel earlier this month after she was placed on administrative leave; in question is a transcript submitted with her application.
During her exclusive interview with TV5, Stoffel told her side of the story.
“I actually ordered that from the school’s website and it was mailed directly to the county,” Stoffel said.
Stoffel said the University of Alaska Fairbanks uses a third-party company called Parchment to fulfill transcript orders. On her order, she said she graduated from the university with a degree in business administration.
“These course numbers don’t match with what the University of Alaska offers for a bachelor’s in business administration,” Custer told Stoffel.
“Right. Later what I found as I discussed even with the county, in 2008 I was diagnosed with PTSD from a domestic violence situation. The last courses I took in 2009 and 2010 were law classes that were not degree related, but something I wanted to do to help with animal control. But they were with UAF and with the process of moving and applying I inadvertently put University of Alaska Fairbanks,” Stoffel said.
Stoffel now says her degree was actually from Wayland Baptist University. She showed TV5 a diploma.
In response to Saginaw County's investigation into Stoffel, Wayland Baptist University said "We have discovered that you have never attended our institution. The copy of the diploma that you presented to your local news channel has been verified as a forgery."
Saginaw County investigated her education background and obtained Authorizations For Release of Education Records from Stoffel for five education institutions that Stoffel believed she attended. According to the county, four of the five educational institutions responded with information regarding the number of credit hours Ms. Stoffel had obtained. But the county said none of the institutions had records of Ms. Stoffel receiving a Bachelor degree.
On Stoffel's transcript order and also on her job application with Saginaw County, she put the University of Alaska Fairbanks as the school where she obtained a bachelor’s degree.
Last week, Stoffel told TV5 she had no plans on resigning because of the community support she received.
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