Readers, when BCI makes a mistake and we become aware of the mistake, we come out and acknowledge it. Today we learned we may have made a rather significant mistake in our post from yesterday where we wrote that Christopher Kickham, cousin of the Cardinal’s priest-secretary, Fr. Robert Kickham, got a job in Parish Pastoral Services at the Pastoral Center.
Sources now have corrected BCI telling us that Chris Kickham is actually the brother of Fr. Robert Kickham, not his cousin. In the interest of full disclosure, we originally heard that Chris Kickham was the brother of Fr. Kickham, then went to double and triple-check the information and were told the new guy in the Pastoral Center had been announced as Fr. Kickham’s cousin. Thus, that is what we wrote. Now we are hearing what we published yesterday is incorrect and Chris and Fr. Kickham are indeed brothers.
We apologize for any confusion or offense that may have occurred as a result of the post. We also regret that we may have under-represented the degree of perceived cronyism and nepotism associated with this situation.
As Deacon A.J. Constantino said in a recent comment, “When you are a manager, you do not want internal staff to be at the water cooler saying candidate XYZ had the job because of who he/she is.” BCI agrees.
We have thoroughly documented a number of other instances of cronyism and nepotism in previous posts which serve to undermine transparency and trust in the management and leadership of the archdiocese. BCI does not know the extent to which internal or external candidates were actively considered and interviewed for this job. But we maintain our opinion that the hiring of the cousin or brother of the Cardinal’s priest-secretary for an open position when their published work history and experience do not match the published criteria for the position gives the appearance of nepotism and cronyism which in turn undermines trust.