A Charleston Southern University associate professor was fired on Friday after his likeness appeared on a beer can.
NBC affiliate WCBD met with Paul Roof, who is an associate professor of sociology at CSU and has worked there for over 10 years. The school is affiliated with the SC Baptist Convention and is recognized as a Christian University, something that has never been an issue for Roof, who is Presbyterian.
Roof had his picture taken at the 2013 Beard and Moustache National Championships by photographer Greg Anderson. Holy City Brewing went on to use that picture on their Chucktown Follicle Brown Ale cans. Roof says Holy City Brewing never attempted to contact him.
“My image and likeness, which I do not own, that I’ve never received compensation for and it was a surprise for me that it was put on a beer can by Holy City Brewing,” Roof said. “It’s been an emotional roller-coaster.”
He met with his dean on Wednesday and explained the situation. His dean found the explanation sufficient. However, Roof was again called in on Friday by the VP’s office where he was then terminated.
Roof received an outpouring of support through social media. He has not received the same type of support from the university, “I was told that it was not representative of a Christian environment. And for me a Christian environment entails two things,” Roof said. “Looking out for other people and forgiveness of others who’ve transgressed you.”
WCBD reached out to CSU, which would not comment beyond stating that the issue is a personnel matter. Roof is currently in contact with an attorney.