Former UTLA director Phil Nemy continued sexual misconduct after keeping job in 2013, according to University investigation


Katie Balevic

Former UT Los Angeles executive director Phil Nemy has been the subject of four sexual misconduct and sexual harassment investigations since December 2018, when The Daily Texan first reported he violated the University’s sexual misconduct and sexual harassment policies but still kept his job.

Nemy, who was fired from his position in May for “unacceptable conduct,” did not respond to multiple requests for comment. In a December 2018 statement, Nemy said he “never made an inappropriate comment or joke towards any of the women attending the program.”

“The University takes all allegations of wrongdoing, including sexual misconduct, seriously and strives to investigate complaints thoroughly and quickly while respecting the confidentiality of all involved parties,” University spokesperson Shilpa Bakre said. “UT is strongly committed to fostering a safe campus environment and to providing needed support and resources.”

The Office of Inclusion and Equity investigated four complaints against Nemy, which were made by four different individuals, according to the investigation obtained by the Texan through a Public Information Act request. 

In the first complaint, a former student said Nemy made inappropriate jokes and touched students without asking, according to the investigation. The student said “that during a class bowling trip, Mr. Nemy placed his hands around her waist in a manner that made her extremely uncomfortable,” according to the investigation.

OIE said it interviewed several students who attended UTLA in previous semesters. One student indicated that, in a different semester from that complainant, she also went on a class bowling trip, and Nemy “grabbed her by her hips and pulled her toward him,” making her feel “embarrassed and extremely uncomfortable,” according to the investigation. 

OIE concluded that these interactions constituted “unwelcome intentional touching” and violated the University’s prohibition on sexual misconduct.

The students OIE interviewed said the “inappropriate jokes” included instances in which Nemy told students never to live on the beach because “you’ll just be watching girls in
bathing suits all day long,” spoke of women as sex objects, commented on a “hell of a blow job” when walking past a fan and joked about a “Texas Hoe” while on a class field trip, according to
the investigation.

“Mr. Nemy denied making inappropriate jokes of a sexual nature and described his humor as ‘dad humor,’” the investigation reads. “Mr. Nemy also categorically denied touching any
student inappropriately.

OIE concluded that Nemy “repeatedly engaged in sexually oriented conversations, comments and horseplay, including the use of language and the telling of jokes and anecdotes of a sexual nature in the classroom and other educational settings,” according to the investigation.

In the second complaint, a former student said Nemy called her a “slag,” which OIE interpreted to mean “slut” or “promiscuous woman,” according to the investigation. 


Other students witnessed the incident and confirmed it with OIE, but Nemy denied referring to the student as a “slag” and said “that he only learned of the term in connection with OIE’s investigation,” according to the investigation. OIE concluded that Nemy more likely than not referred to the student as a “slag.”

“OIE cannot imagine a circumstance in which it would be appropriate for an educator to refer to a student in such a manner,” the investigation reads. “The witness accounts … provide sufficient context to conclude that (Nemy) failed to observe the appropriate boundaries of the educator/student relationship.”  

Complaints three and four, by two other individuals, were entirely redacted.