MU financial services director arrested

Wednesday, February 6, 2008 | 1:00 p.m. CST; updated 4:36 p.m. CDT, Tuesday, July 22, 2008

COLUMBIA — The director of MU’s Office for Financial Success was arrested on suspicion of stealing university money, MU police said Wednesday.

Mark D. Oleson, 36, of 3712 Bray Court, was arrested Jan. 31 on a charge of transferring more than $500 of MU money into a personal bank account, said MU Police Chief Jack Watring.

Oleson was booked into the Boone County Jail and posted $4,500 bond about five hours later, jail officer Pamela Ricketts said.

Watring said his department is investigating the transfer of funds on two separate occasions.

Reached by phone Wednesday morning, Oleson said he is currently on leave from his position, but he would not comment on his arrest.

“My attorney has basically asked me not to talk about it,” he said.

The university’s Office for Financial Success provides group and individual workshops on credit, debt management, budgeting, investing and other areas of finance, according to its Web site.

Oleson was hired by MU in 2005, according to his biography on the office’s Web site.

“If there is any disciplinary action that will be taken in any circumstance it is typically decided upon by the employee’s supervisor,” MU spokesman Christian Basi said.

Basi said he didn’t know who Oleson’s direct supervisor is, but that the punishment could range from a verbal reprimand to termination.

According to the office’s Web site, Oleson worked previously at Iowa State University as an assistant professor and executive director of the university’s Financial Counseling Clinic. He was a financial counseling consultant in Orlando, Fla., from 1999 to 2002.

He earned a bachelor’s degree from Brigham Young University, a master’s degree from Utah State University and a doctoral degree in Family Financial Counseling from Utah State University.

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