We’re not sure if the task of doing damage control for Penn State is the toughest, most thankless PR gig in the country right now, but it’s got to be pretty close. According to a recent Reuters article, the University is hoping that Karen Peetz, chairman of the school’s board of trustees and big-name executive at Bank of New York Mellon Corp., can help them resuscitate their severely damaged reputation despite the fact that she doesn’t work in the PR field and never really signed up for the job.

While some grads remain true to their alma mater, Penn State’s star has clearly dimmed in the eyes of the public. All agree that the school made some huge ethical and public relations mistakes when dealing with (or trying to wish away) the Jerry Sandusky sex abuse scandal. While the school hired PR firms to deal with the fallout, Peetz has effectively served as its public face during this most difficult hour even as her dual roles in PR and finance threaten to collide with one another. Read more