'Wonder Blunder' Puts U. of Hawaii's President on the Hot Seat

'Wonder Blunder' Puts Hawaii's President on the Hot Seat 1

Brendan Smialowski, AFP, Getty Images

Athletics officials at the flagship campus thought they were booking Stevie Wonder (shown performing at the White House last May) for a fund-raising concert when they sent $200,000 to a fraudulent promoter. The resulting uproar has opened a debate over politics and governance throughout the system.

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close 'Wonder Blunder' Puts Hawaii's President on the Hot Seat 1

Brendan Smialowski, AFP, Getty Images

Athletics officials at the flagship campus thought they were booking Stevie Wonder (shown performing at the White House last May) for a fund-raising concert when they sent $200,000 to a fraudulent promoter. The resulting uproar has opened a debate over politics and governance throughout the system.

The deal was signed and sealed, but Stevie Wonder was not delivered.

In one of higher education's more bizarre controversies, a failed attempt to bring Mr. Wonder to the University of Hawaii-Manoa for a concert has spiraled into a full-scale debacle. At the center of the storm is M.R.C. Greenwood, president of the University of Hawaii system, who is taking flak from lawmakers and faculty for an embarrassing episode locally dubbed "the Wonder Blunder."

The saga appears to have