Jul 19, 1998
- 1. Approve Brand as Treasurer - Vote
- A Special Election was held on the nonprofit's mailing list, electing Brand as Treasurer. Currently he
functions as interim Treasurer due to an appointment by the President. The Board approval is necessary
to make this official.
- 2. Approve new Bank as Corporate Bank - Vote
- Since Diane's resignation, the Pottsville, PA bank can no longer be the corporate bank. Brand will open a
new account for Troubled Times, Inc., with the President as co-signer.
- 3. Approve Administration & Operation Costs Grant Proposal - Vote
- During the April Board Meeting, Jan raised the issue of reimbursing gifts made to cover startup expenses
and administrative expenses from any grant secured in the future make specifically to cover such costs. A
motion was made and passed to do such reimbursement. Jan has provided an outline of his proposal,
Proposal 1, and Nancy has proposed an alternate, Proposal 2.
- 4. Report on Anonymous $500 Donation - Report by Vice President
- The Gift Pool has received an anonymous donation of $500. Per the Bylaws, this stays in the Gift Pool
until the pool is $1,000 or more, or unless the Treasurer calls for the funds. The Vice President is the
- 5. Report on Apparent Embezzlement by Diana Ferrizzi/Berger - Report by President
- During the April 26, 1998 Board Meeting, final Wrap-Up by Diana as a result of her resignation as
Treasurer, she reported that checks had been mailed to Gerard, Clipper, Brand and Nancy. No checks
were ever received. No disbursement had ever been made by Diana, even after the Bylaws were
amended to require the Treasurer to come current every quarter, at a minimum. In May and into June, the
President phoned her home dozens of times, approximately every other day, and was told several times
that a check for $1,500 had been mailed or placed in the Western Union database. Finally, Diana wrote a
Check for $1,500. This Check Bounced. Further attempts to get Diana to write a second checks failed.
Ridiculous excuses are given. Diana has never admitted lying or having taken the funds for her own use.
In addition to unreturned funds, Diana has not turned over her copy of the corporate Seal, which should
have been returned. The excuse given was that a wrong zip code was used, and the Seal returned to her,
but no attempt to re-mail the Seal and other records due was ever made.
- 6. Report on Prosecution Steps - Report by President
- Several crimes have been committed, per Pennsylvania law. The first is writing a Bad Check, a
misdemeanor. Second is an embezzlement charge, Theft by Failure to Make Required Disposition of
Funds Received, Statute 3927 of Consolidated Title 18 in the Pennsylvania criminal code. The third is
Theft by Deception because there is solid evidence that she deposited the first $1,000 check on August
18, 1997 directly into her personal account, a criminal action called "conversion" in Violation of our
Bylaws. And the fourth is Receiving Stolen Property, because of theft by deception. The President has
taken steps to prosecute Diana under all of these statutes.
- 7. Report on Steps Taken to Alert SUFOIT - Report by President
- During the time Diana was acting as the Treasurer and/or failing to return the funds entrusted to her, she
was the National Director of SUFOIT. During the December Board Meeting, Diana mentioned this and a
bumper sticker program to raise funds, suggesting that she could do such a campaign to raise funds for
Troubled Times, Inc. also. This offer fell on deaf ears. During the many attempts to get Diana to return the
funds, the President learned that her home was in danger of being repossessed and her water at one point
turned off for non-payment of a bill. At the same time, her boyfriend reported depositing $3,000 in cash in
her account for her. Due to this indication of motive for theft and unexplained cash on hand, the President
alerted SUFOIT and they removed her from the National Director position and terminated the bumper
- 8. Removal Diana Ferrizzi/Berger from Board - Report by President
- Article 3 Section 19 of the Bylaws state that: Vacancies on the Board of Directors shall exist on the
death, resignation or removal of any director. The Board of Directors may declare vacant the office of
a director who has been declared of unsound mind by a final order of court, or convicted of a felony,
or been found by a final order or judgment of any court to have breached any duty of said
directorship. Directors may be removed without cause by a majority of all members. Any director may
resign effective upon giving written notice to the Chairperson of the Board, the President, the
Secretary, or the Board of Directors. No director may resign if the corporation would then be left
without a duly elected director or directors in charge of its affairs, except upon notice to the Attorney
General of the State of Delaware. Thus unless such an election is held, she remains a Board Member. At
this time, due to her lack on influence on the membership or affairs of Troubled Times, this appears not to
- 9. Approval of Interim Accounting Approach - Vote
- Since Pennsylvania law allows a defendant to escape prosecution by simply paying back the money, there
is a change that the $1,500 may still be recovered. Suggested interim approach to use the $1,500 gift to
cover attorney fees for review of the legality of our Bylaws and operating procedures, and to used this
$1,500 to cover 1997 administration and operating costs incurred, repaying outstanding Vouchers. The
attorney costs will then not be vouchered until a later date. Conveniently, they are both for $1,500.
- 10. Committee to Study Fiscal Checks and Balances - Vote
- Article 5, Section 2 of the Bylaws states: The corporation shall have such other committees as may
from time to time be designated by resolution of the Board of Directors. Such other committees may
consist of persons who are not also members of the Board. These additional committees shall act in an
advisory capacity only to the board and shall be clearly titled as advisory committees. Suggest the
Board designate a Committee on Fiscal Checks and Balances to study ways to avoid embezzlement or
misappropriate of funds by either the Treasurer or grantees and report to the Board on their conclusions.
Preliminary Discussion has already occurred on the nonprofit mailing lists, with examples of problem
areas, Case Histories, and possible Solutions offered.