MUFON’s Board of Directors held an emergency meeting that evening, firing Harzan effective immediately and releasing this statement, “In light of recent events, Jan Harzan has been permanently removed as the Executive Director of the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON). Effective immediately, he will no longer serve any role in the organization. David MacDonald, Executive Director Emeritus and a member of the MUFON Board of Directors, will now assume the duties of Executive Director. MUFON remains committed to its core mission: the study of UFOs for the benefit of humanity. This mission is greater than any one person or member of MUFON and supersedes all other considerations. We will continue to move forward and focus on our mission statement.”
As I stated on Spaced Out Radio, I know two people on MUFON’s BOD whom I consider friends. In chatting briefly via text message with both of them, the shock and the pain they felt over this was unconscionable. The one person hadn’t slept in a couple days. Rumors and conjecture immediately started to run rampant on social media. The ‘Cancel Culture’ wanted MUFON shut down effective immediately, stating it wasn’t just Harzan’s malicious and alleged charges; but also racism and racist comments made by former members of MUFON, who were State Directors on the East Coast.
MUFON is at a crossroads right now, and gathering daily via conference and video calls to discuss what their next few moves should be in order to clean up this latest mess and move away from Harzan and the horrid charges laid against him as quickly as possible.
Over the last decade, MUFON’s reputation has been questioned on numerous occasions. Weak leadership can do that. I have been overly critical about the organization for the last couple of years, as Harzan deliberately dodged coming on our show because he didn’t want to answer any tough questions on MUFON’s history. That shows weakness when your leader doesn’t want to defend his own team.
But is there still a place for MUFON? Cautiously I state that I do believe there is, for a few reasons. They have an amazing database of information and connections that can be used and added to. They need to figure out and implement a game plan effective immediately on how to start rebuilding their reputation post-Harzan. My recommendation to one BOD member was to hire an independent investigator to thoroughly interview everyone on the BOD and around head office in Orange County, to make sure that everyone is as clean as they say. MUFON needs to be held accountable and the best way to do that is to hire a private firm to investigate. If it comes out clean, it’s a step forward. If more dirt is found, clean up the mess even more. It would behoove MUFON’s current BOD to do this, and make it public as well. Drain the swamp, I believe, is the correct statement here.
On a personal level, from what I have been able to find out from people within MUFON, the rest of the Board of Directors had absolutely no clue about this. And I believe this statement. But even more twisted, and what does make me think here and needs to be investigated, was how was Jan Harzan arrested on the 3rd, and kept it silent from so many people until it became public 11 days later? The dude went back to work without informing anyone. That is very brazen on Harzan’s part, as he should have immediately resigned from his position. But whether it was ego, fear, or naivety he kept on like it was business as usual. That states one of two things: 1) Someone else knew and told him to shut up. 2) He thought this would pass over and if he kept it quiet, he’d still have a job. He forgot one thing, THE INTERNET!
This is where an internal investigation from an independent source can find out this information. It’s imperative the BOD and MUFON do this, otherwise they will do nothing to rebuild their credibility within the field. It would also put any other potential perverts on notice that their days of abuse and sick, twisted sexual fantasies are not going to be tolerated by the UFO community at all. MUFON has a chance to be a real leader here, championing a new cause, if they do it right. Let’s hope they do.
As for the rest of the Ufology field, everyone now has to be questioned, especially those closest to Harzan. In talking to a couple of former police officers who are working within the UFO community, they state these types of sick people are either lone wolfs, or they work in a wolf pack. Details regarding Harzan and his alleged actions are few and far between right now. We will learn more. Was this a one-time thing on a bad judgement call? Were there other victims? Right now we don’t know. You know that in cases like this, all of his computers will have been seized for evidence, likely including the ones at MUFON headquarters that he had access to. We will know soon enough.
As we continue to monitor this story, we all need to thank the Huntington Beach Police Department for their great work in getting alleged predators off the streets and protecting our children. This is a good reminder for all of us with kids who use the internet, to teach them that chat rooms are not safe. Never give out email addresses, and take the time to learn about securities along with whom our children are talking to online.