Latest ouster in wake of Nassar scandal divides USA Gymnastics

USA Gymnastics announced Friday it has parted ways with the director of its women's program, but not everyone involved with USA Gymnastics seems to agree with the move.

In a statement released through USA Gymnastics, CEO Kerry Perry did not elaborate on the decision to split with Rhonda Faehn, nor did she indicate whether Faehn was fired or resigned.

"Rhonda Faehn is no longer with USA Gymnastics. This is a personnel matter that we will not discuss in detail," Perry said in the statement.

Faehn is believed to be the first USA Gymnastics official to be told of sexual-abuse accusations against then-team doctor Larry Nassar. Olympic gold medalist Aly Raisman is one of the more outspoken critics of Faehn, believing she should have gone directly to authorities when Faehn learned of the Nassar allegations in summer 2015.

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Instead, Faehn notified then-USA Gymnastics president Steve Penny, who then hired an investigator. The FBI was then contacted more than five weeks later, according to multiple reports.

According to NBC News, Faehn was at a national training camp in Tennessee when she was called to USA Gymnastics headquarters on Thursday afternoon. According to the report, Faehn did not immediately resign but rather stayed at the camp, where the 22 gymnasts and their coaches in attendance learned of the news.

Reportedly "blindsided" by the news, the gymnasts then requested the final two practices at the camp be canceled.

Related: Gymnasts who were victims of Larry Nassar: 

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Gymnasts who have accused Larry Nassar of assault
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Gymnasts who have accused Larry Nassar of assault
Rachael Denhollander (C) the first woman to publicly say she was sexually abused by Larry Nassar, the former physician for the U.S. womens gymnastics team is hugged during a hearing in Ingham County Circuit Court on November 22, 2017 in Lansing, Michigan. Former USA Gymnastics team doctor Lawrence (Larry) Nassar, accused of molesting dozens of female athletes over several decades, on Wednesday pleaded guilty to multiple counts of criminal sexual conduct. Nassar -- who was involved with USA Gymnastics for nearly three decades and worked with the country's gymnasts at four separate Olympic Games -- could face at least 25 years in prison on the charges brought in Michigan. / AFP PHOTO / JEFF KOWALSKY (Photo credit should read JEFF KOWALSKY/AFP/Getty Images)
Larissa Boyce, a former gymnast sexually abused by Larry Nassar, the former physician for the U.S. womens gymnastics team attends a hearing of Nassar's trial in Ingham County Circuit Court on November 22, 2017 in Lansing, Michigan. Former USA Gymnastics team doctor Lawrence (Larry) Nassar, accused of molesting dozens of female athletes over several decades, on Wednesday pleaded guilty to multiple counts of criminal sexual conduct. Nassar -- who was involved with USA Gymnastics for nearly three decades and worked with the country's gymnasts at four separate Olympic Games -- could face at least 25 years in prison on the charges brought in Michigan. / AFP PHOTO / JEFF KOWALSKY (Photo credit should read JEFF KOWALSKY/AFP/Getty Images)
Rachael Denhollander (4th L with white blouse) the first woman to publicly say she was sexually abused by Larry Nassar, the former physician for the U.S. womens gymnastics team attends a hearing in Ingham County Circuit Court on November 22, 2017 in Lansing, Michigan. Former USA Gymnastics team doctor Lawrence (Larry) Nassar, accused of molesting dozens of female athletes over several decades, on Wednesday pleaded guilty to multiple counts of criminal sexual conduct. Nassar -- who was involved with USA Gymnastics for nearly three decades and worked with the country's gymnasts at four separate Olympic Games -- could face at least 25 years in prison on the charges brought in Michigan. / AFP PHOTO / JEFF KOWALSKY (Photo credit should read JEFF KOWALSKY/AFP/Getty Images)
Madeleine Jones, 18 of Farmington Hills, Michigan, who was victimized by former Michigan State University and USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar attends a hearing in Ingham County Circuit Court on November 22, 2017 in Lansing, Michigan. Former USA Gymnastics team doctor Lawrence (Larry) Nassar, accused of molesting dozens of female athletes over several decades, on Wednesday pleaded guilty to multiple counts of criminal sexual conduct. Nassar -- who was involved with USA Gymnastics for nearly three decades and worked with the country's gymnasts at four separate Olympic Games -- could face at least 25 years in prison on the charges brought in Michigan. / AFP PHOTO / JEFF KOWALSKY (Photo credit should read JEFF KOWALSKY/AFP/Getty Images)
Larissa Boyce (R) gets a hug from Alexis Alvarado, both victims of Larry Nassar, during a hearing in Ingham County Circuit Court on November 22, 2017 in Lansing, Michigan. Former USA Gymnastics team doctor Lawrence (Larry) Nassar, accused of molesting dozens of female athletes over several decades, on Wednesday pleaded guilty to multiple counts of criminal sexual conduct. Nassar -- who was involved with USA Gymnastics for nearly three decades and worked with the country's gymnasts at four separate Olympic Games -- could face at least 25 years in prison on the charges brought in Michigan. / AFP PHOTO / JEFF KOWALSKY (Photo credit should read JEFF KOWALSKY/AFP/Getty Images)
kalie Lorincz (C) who was victimized by former Michigan State University and USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar during a hearing in Ingham County Circuit Court on November 22, 2017 in Lansing, Michigan. Former USA Gymnastics team doctor Lawrence (Larry) Nassar, accused of molesting dozens of female athletes over several decades, on Wednesday pleaded guilty to multiple counts of criminal sexual conduct. Nassar -- who was involved with USA Gymnastics for nearly three decades and worked with the country's gymnasts at four separate Olympic Games -- could face at least 25 years in prison on the charges brought in Michigan. / AFP PHOTO / JEFF KOWALSKY (Photo credit should read JEFF KOWALSKY/AFP/Getty Images)
ANTWERPEN, BELGIUM - OCTOBER 02: McKayla Maroney of USA gets ready to compete in the Womens Vault Qualification on Day Three of the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships Belgium 2013 held at the Antwerp Sports Palace on October 2, 2013 in Antwerpen, Belgium. (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 16: Aly Raisman of the United States performs during the women's floor exercise final at Rio 2016 on Tuesday, August 16, 2016. Raisin finished second to fellow American Simone Biles. (Photo by AAron Ontiveroz/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 29: Olympic medalist Simone Biles stands on stage during an East Room event at the White House September 29, 2016 in Washington, DC. President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama welcome the 2016 U.S. Olympic and Paralympic teams to the White House to honor their participation and success in the Rio Olympic Games this year. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
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"We all strongly disagree in this decision and believe that Rhonda is the glue that is holding us together right now," national team gymnast JaFree Scott wrote on Instagram. "We all TRUST her and believe she is moving Team USA forward."

On Thursday night, Team USA gymnast Margzetta Frazier reportedly tweeted a screen grab of a text message she sent to Perry, which said, in part, "I am deeply saddened, disappointed, and infuriated with the decisions being made by USAG. I understand and appreciate your effort to making USAG a better environment for athletes, but you are doing exactly the opposite. Getting rid of coaches is one thing, but doing so at an active national team camp is inconsiderate to us athletes and inappropriate. If we are the ones that you are 'protecting' then why are you getting rid of the people who actually care about us. Valeri Liukin was doing an incredible job as our head coordinator. Rhonda Faehn is an exceptional coach, human being, and mentor. She is the reason why we are moving forward. Or at least trying to."

Frazier, a high school senior set to enroll and compete at UCLA this fall, has since deleted her Twitter account.

Liukin, a former Soviet Olympic champion and the father of 2008 U.S. gold-medal winner Nastia Liukin, took over as U.S. women's team coordinator in September 2016 following the retirement of famed coach Marta Karolyi. But he stepped down in February citing stress from the "present climate."

Perry was named USA Gymnastics CEO in December and is scheduled to testify before the House Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations on Wednesday.

--Field Level Media

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