David Sidoo

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David Sidoo
Born (1959-07-10) July 10, 1959 (age 60)[1]
NationalityCanadian
Alma materUniversity of British Columbia
Occupationbusinessman, philanthropist, and former professional Canadian football player.
Criminal charge(s)Charged as one of the parent perpetrators in the 2019 college admissions bribery scandal
Criminal statusPled guilty to fraud
Websitewww.davidsidoo.com

David Sidoo (born July 10, 1959) is a Canadian businessman, philanthropist, and former professional Canadian football player. Sidoo played for the University of British Columbia Thunderbirds, and is an inductee in the UBC Sports Hall of Fame and the BC Football Hall of Fame.[2] In 2019 the FBI named Sidoo as one of several parent perpetrators in the 2019 college admissions bribery scandal.

Early life[edit]

Sidoo is of Indian-Canadian descent and grew up in New Westminster, B.C., the son of a sawmill-working immigrant father from Punjab in northern India and a stay-at-home mother.[3] From 1978-1982, he attended the University of British Columbia on a football scholarship. At UBC, he played for the school's team, the Thunderbirds.[4]

After graduating university, Sidoo was drafted into the Canadian Football League, becoming the first Indian-Canadian to have made the draft for professional Canadian football.[5] He played professional football for the Saskatchewan Roughriders and BC Lions until 1988.[6]

After retiring from football, Sidoo started working in the field of brokerage. Sidoo later was one of the founding members who sold an energy company, American Oil & Gas, to the Hess Corporation.[7][7] At the start of 2019, Sidoo was the CEO of Advantage Lithium, a mining company.[7]

Philanthropy[edit]

Sidoo is known for his philanthropic work in British Columbia, through his personal contributions and the charitable organisations founded by his family through there various business ventures. In recognition of his charitable work, Sidoo received the Order of British Columbia this past July and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal and the Non-Resident Indian Award in 2012.[8]

In 2015, Sidoo created the 13th Man Foundation supporting the UBC Football program.[9] The 13th Man Foundation is dedicated to providing student-athletes of UBC with exceptional athletic and academic opportunities. In 2015 the foundation donated $800,000 to setup the UBC Football Academic Centre. Located just steps away from Thunderbird Stadium, the UBC Football Academic Centre provides a space for all players to receive academic tutoring and advising. With more than 1,800-square-feet of multi-functional space, the centre is also used for team meetings, game preparation and academic supervision. The facility will help ensure the success of current players and serve as an essential tool in the recruitment of top student-athletes who visit the Point Grey campus in hopes of suiting up for the Thunderbirds Football program.[10]

The Sidoo Family Athletics Endowment, which dispenses aid to student athletes, is the largest of its kind at UBC, where Sidoo served on the board of governors.[8]

Legal issues[edit]

In March 2019, Sidoo was named as one of the alleged parent perpetrators of the 2019 college admissions bribery scandal. Multiple sources reported on allegations Sidoo had paid money to illegally aid his two sons in getting accepted into American colleges.[11][12]

As alleged in the FBI indictment, Sidoo paid $100,000 to have a test-taker impersonate his older son, so that the latter's SAT test scores were improved.[13] The scores were sent to Chapman University, which his son later attended.[14] According to the FBI, Sidoo paid an additional $100,000 to have his younger son's test taken in the same, fraudulent way.[11][14] CBC News later reported that Sidoo had also paid a test-taker to fake a high school exam on behalf of his son in 2012.[15] The affected scores were sent to Yale, Georgetown and the University of California, Berkeley, the latter of which his younger son eventually attended.[14] The FBI indictment noted that Sidoo had been in contact with other perpetrators of the college admission scandal in 2018, and in October of that year recorded a phone call in which Sidoo discussed obtaining a GMAT score for his older son, who intended to apply to business school.[16][17]

Sidoo pleaded not guilty before a federal court in Massachusetts on 15 March 2019.[18] In light of the 2019 college admissions bribery scandal, Sidoo stepped down as the CEO of both Advantage Lithium and East West Petroleum in mid-March 2019.[19]

Sidoo pleaded guilty[20] to fraud in the aforementioned matter on March 13, 2020, asking for a sentence of 90 days in jail and a $250,000 (USD) fine. The sentencing hearing will take place on July 15, 2020. Sidoo has asked that his name be removed from the University of British Columbia football field.[21]

Sidoo's appointment to the Order of British Columbia in 2016[22] was rescinded on June 12, 2020.[23] Sidoo is the first person to be stripped of the Order.[24]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Dave Sidhoo". Just Sports Stats. Retrieved April 14, 2019.
  2. ^ "David Sidoo on football, charity work, business, and UBC's Board of Governors".
  3. ^ "How a B.C. Philanthropist who 'hit the motherlode' got caught up in the U.S. College admissions scandal | National Post". 2019-12-05.
  4. ^ Mckenzie, Kevin Hinton & Ryan. "BCBusiness". BCBusiness. Retrieved 2019-03-13.
  5. ^ "Advantage Lithium - Management & Directors". advantagelithium.com. Retrieved 2019-03-13.
  6. ^ "Vancouver's David Sidoo Named in U.S. College Admissions Scandal" - Bloomberg
  7. ^ a b c "How philanthropist and businessman David Sidoo helped build the UBC football team into national champs". bcbusiness.ca. Retrieved 2019-09-16.
  8. ^ a b "BCBusiness".
  9. ^ "David Sidoo".
  10. ^ "UBC football opens door to bright future".
  11. ^ a b Mar 12, Rhianna Schmunk; March 13, 2019 |. "B.C. philanthropist accused of paying $200K to help sons pass college entrance exams | CBC News". CBC. Retrieved 2019-03-13.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  12. ^ Brown, Scott; Griffin, Kevin; March 12, Keith Fraser Updated; 2019 (2019-03-13). "Vancouver's David Sidoo charged in U.S. college-entrance scandal | Vancouver Sun". Retrieved 2019-03-13.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  13. ^ Glaser, Rebeccah (2019-03-13). "Chapman among universities named in massive college admissions scandal". The Panther Online. Retrieved 2019-03-13.
  14. ^ a b c Hussain, Suhauna (March 19, 2019). "College admissions scandal hits UC Berkeley; fake SAT score allegedly submitted". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved March 20, 2019.
  15. ^ Mar 13, Rhianna Schmunk; March 13, 2019 |. "Here's how prosecutors believe David Sidoo allegedly conspired to get his sons into top universities | CBC News". CBC. Retrieved 2019-03-13.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  16. ^ "Sidoo Redacted Indictment". Scribd. Retrieved 2019-03-14.
  17. ^ March 14, Dan Fumano Updated; 2019 (2019-03-15). "David Sidoo in 'good state of mind' before court appearance: lawyer | Vancouver Sun". Retrieved 2019-03-15.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  18. ^ Mar 15, Rhianna Schmunk; March 15, 2019 |. "David Sidoo returning home to Canada after pleading not guilty to fraud charges in U.S. | CBC News". CBC. Retrieved 2019-03-16.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  19. ^ Mar 14, CBC News · Posted; March 14, 2019 12:46 PM PT | Last Updated. "David Sidoo steps down as CEO of Vancouver companies in light of college cheating scandal | CBC News". CBC. Retrieved 2019-03-20.
  20. ^ "David Sidoo pleads guilty in U.S. college admissions scandal". CBC. March 13, 2020. Retrieved March 22, 2020.
  21. ^ "David Sidoo pleads guilty in U.S. college admissions scandal". March 13, 2020.
  22. ^ 2016 Recipients
  23. ^ Order in Council 313/2020
  24. ^ "Indo-Canadian Sikh bizman stripped off top award for admission fraud". Hindustan Times. 2020-06-14. Retrieved 2020-06-30.