Nick Maddox faced sexual harassment allegations at Boys and Girls Club
What is Nick Maddox's secret for making Leon County work so well?

Nick Maddox
An employee accused Maddox of sexually harassing her while the nonprofit turned a blind eye.

Leon County Commissioner and former FSU football player Nick Maddox was accused of sexual harassment during his time as Executive Director of the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Big Bend.

Emails obtained by the Tallahassee Democrat between Boys and Girls Club officials and an employee included allegations that Maddox sexually harassed the employee. Maddox left the nonprofit in late August 2021 with little fanfare.

The allegations, according to the Democrat, come from a relative of Rudy Ferguson, one of the people challenging Maddox in the 2022 election. The emails were sent before Ferguson filed to run for office.

In the emails, the employee accused Maddox and claimed that he admitted to sexually harassing her and another employee, but provided few details in her email about the specifics of Maddox’s behavior.

“As an employee of the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Big Bend I feel I am being retaliated against, treated indifferently and targeted by certain employees,” she wrote. “I am deeply concerned by the lack of integrity, support and response I have received from leadership.”

She said she experienced discrimination and retaliation after reporting that Maddox sexually harassed her. She also accused organization officials, namely Interim Executive Director Kacy Dennis and Board Chairman DeWayne Harvey, of turning a blind eye to her complaints.

“Dennis was also fully aware of Nick Maddox’s fraternization of employees and sexual harassment but condoned these actions by engaging in conversations, making statements and encouraging me to entertain Mr. Maddox on several occasions,” she wrote.

The Democrat reported that several anonymous sources said her allegations prompted the nonprofit’s board to hire a law firm to investigate. However, the findings of their investigation remain a secret.

The Boys and Girls Club made a short statement about the allegations Monday, including that the organization accepted Maddox’s resignation on Aug. 27.

“Our organization is aware an employee has raised concerns, and we are in the process of addressing those concerns,” the nonprofit said. “However, as all personnel matters are confidential, we are unable to comment further on this situation.”

Maddox also issued a statement Monday, but declined to comment on the allegations further.

“In my personal life, I have always put my family first,” he said. “In my professional life, I have always put my service to the community first. It’s unfortunate that in these times, and especially during political campaign season, people will try to cancel folks or tear others down. I will not engage in this kind of politics or personal attacks.”

Ferguson discussed the allegations with the Democrat in a Dec. 9 interview. He said he learned about the issue in October, but that his family member shared little about what happened.

“She said inappropriate behavior,” Ferguson said. “I don’t know the details.”

However, the Democrat said he walked back his comments the following day, saying he didn’t know whether he spoke “accurately.”

Ferguson denied a request from Florida Politics for comment.

Josh Johnson, a candidate running against Maddox, emailed a statement to Florida Politics about the allegations after they became public.

“These troubling accusations highlight what I’ve said from the beginning: it’s time for new leadership in our local government,” Johnson said. “I’m a high school teacher, not a high school student, so I won’t delve into the rumor mill, but the lack of accountability and the culture that has created today’s status quo needs to be challenged. I’m running to be part of that much-needed change.”

Tristan Wood

Tristan Wood graduated from the University of Florida in 2021 with a degree in Journalism. A South Florida native, he has a passion for political and accountability reporting. He previously reported for Fresh Take Florida, a news service that covers the Florida Legislature and state political stories operating out of UF’s College of Journalism and Communications. You can reach Tristan at [email protected], or on Twitter @TristanDWood


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