Amid controversy, the relationship between widely known Christian scholar John Warwick Montgomery and the law school he founded in 1980 ended earlier this year. Montgomery, highly regarded by many for his work in Christian apologetics, founded the Anaheim, California-based Simon Greenleaf School of Law in 1980.
In January, Montgomery signed a document ending his association with the school. This culminated a process coordinated by a Christian conciliation organization that attempted to mediate the conflict between Montgomery and the Simon Greenleaf board of directors. According to the terms of the agreement, neither Montgomery nor board members are at liberty to discuss details of the settlement.
Various published reports, however, indicate the controversy was touched off late in 1987 when former employees of the school presented the board with a long list of allegations against Montgomery.
John Stewart, a former faculty member at Simon Greenleaf and one of those who approached the board, said individuals had been unsuccessful in trying to resolve their concerns with Montgomery directly.
The Los Angeles Times reported that a letter last fall to Montgomery, written by John Wanvig, who chaired a committee appointed by the school’s board to examine the allegations, indicated that one of the charges concerned “circumstances surrounding [Montgomery’s] divorce.”
The Times report outlined court documents in which Montgomery’s ex-wife, Joyce, claimed that in 1983 her husband moved to finalize the couple’s divorce without her “knowledge and consent.” In July of 1985, a California superior court judge nullified the divorce, citing “extrinsic fraud.” Montgomery declined to speak with CT, citing the terms of the conciliation agreement.
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