Dr. Robert E. Anderson | Michigan Radio
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Dr. Robert E. Anderson

The University of Michigan football stadium
Emma Winowiecki / Michigan Radio

Dr. Robert E. Anderson was a physician at the University of Michigan from the late 1960s to early 2000s. Hundreds have accused him of sexually abusing them in the time period. The doctor is not here to answer for his actions. Most—but not all—of the people accused of enabling him are gone too. What, then, does justice look like?

The following interview is featured in this story by Anna Clark about those survivors, his enablers, and the institution that is finally facing a reckoning.

he University of Michigan has received nearly 400 complaints against Dr. Robert E. Anderson.
Paulette Parker / Michigan Radio

Let’s begin with the people whose names we don’t know.

The hockey player on scholarship who picked the University of Michigan over other Division I programs because it was his favorite and first choice.

The wrestler who grew up in a large family in a blue-collar neighborhood, where a university coach sat on the couch of his parents’ home and promised the team would take care of their son.

Bo Schembechler in 1981.
UM Bentley Historical Library

Bo Schembechler, one of the most famous and beloved coaches in college football history, was told of Dr. Robert Anderson’s sexual abuse of students in 1982, a former student alleges.

Anderson, who served as Michigan’s Director of Student Health Services 1968-1980 and was an Athletic Department Team Physician, stayed at Michigan in a faculty position through 1998. According to a spokesperson, the University (which holds Michigan Radio's license) has received “394 unique complaints” regarding Anderson’s abuse under the guise of medical treatments. Multiple lawsuits against the school are ongoing.

Michigan football stadium
Mark Brush / Michigan Radio

Today on Stateside, Governor Gretchen Whitmer has been vocal about her decision to only reopen schools if public health officials agree it is safe.

What are the discussions happening between the Governor and the Republican led legislature regarding schools and education funding? Plus a conversation with former Detroit Institute of Arts and Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit employees about systemic racism in art institutions. Also, we spoke with the reporter who wrote about University of Michigan football star Jon Vaughn’s story of survival in “an ecosystem of abuse.”

University of Michigan sign
Anna Schlutt / For Michigan Radio

A man who was a University of Michigan wrestler in the 1980s has sued the school, alleging he was molested dozens of times.

The lawsuit filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Detroit identifies the man as John Doe. He accused the university of failing to remove Dr. Robert Anderson years earlier despite complaints about him. Anderson died in 2008.

University of Michigan sign
Anna Schlutt / For Michigan Radio

A former patient has told a Detroit newspaper that a late University of Michigan doctor accused of sexual abuse wrote letters certifying students were gay so they could avoid military service during the Vietnam War in exchange for sexual contact.

University of Michigan sign
Anna Schlutt / For Michigan Radio

A University of Michigan wrestler from the 1970s says he was kicked off the team and lost his financial aid after complaining to a coach that he had been abused by a sports doctor.

University of Michigan sign
Anna Schlutt / Michigan Radio

Updated Feb. 20, 2020 at 4:53 p.m.:

A sixth person is accusing a late University of Michigan physician of sexual abuse. The university says it has received more than 20 calls to a hotline since it announced an investigation into Dr. Robert E. Anderson Wednesday.