Gov. Corbett fired a member of his cabinet on Thursday over an email in which a racial epithet was used, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the matter.
Corbett announced Thursday morning that he had asked Richard Allan, 60, secretary the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, to resign his position effective immediately.
He did not give a reason. Spokesman Kevin Harley would only say it was a “personnel decision.”
But sources who spoke on condition of anonymity, said Corbett became aware of an email that Allan wrote to his wife, also a state employee, in which he jokingly uses a derogatory racial term for an African American.
Efforts to reach Allan were unsuccesful.
Ellen Ferretti, the deputy secretary for parks and forestry, was named acting secretary, Corbett said in the statement.
Ferretti, a former president of the northeast regional office of the Pennsylvania Environmental Council, was hired by Allan as his deputy.
Allan, a former scrap metal recycler, was named as DCNR secretary shortly after Corbett took office in Jan. 2011.
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