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Sunday, August 15, 2010

Don’t Look Down, Part 3


Priority One Credit Union's COO, Beatrice Walker's latest campaign involves amending the credit union's policies that directly impact employees. According to Ms. Walker, she is going to tackle employee policies as part of her cost-cutting plan though we have no idea why she has chosen to change policies that impact non-managerial staff.

Since her arrival to Priority One on June 1, 2009, Beatrice Walker has proven to be an undisciplined and self-indulgent spender. What's more, wasn't she hired to create new sources of income, a job she apparently is quite incapable of doing. 

The following list references some of Ms. Walker's latest projects which might prompt one to ask, "Why is she getting paid $100,000 plus per year to do this?" For an answer to that question, you'd have to inquire with federal law breaker, President Charles R. Wiggington, Sr. and the equally corrupt Board Chair, Diedra Harris-Brooks? 

7-Minute Grace Period

A test of any leader's competency is often best attested to in how they handle the small challenges facing any business. Recently, Ms. Walker, tackled the credit union's "7-minute grace period". The grace period is the period of time, employees are allowed to arrive late to work without incurring an attendance violation. Ms. Walker's recent change to policy has taken a fairly insignificant aspect of policy and magically transformed it into a brontosaurus. 

Illogically, Ms. Walker has not chosen to eliminate the grace period but rather, issue verbal "written" warnings to any employee who arrives to work late within the 7-minute period. After an unspecified number of occurrences, employees will be issued a written warning and/or terminated at the discretion of the credit union. 

Rather than creating a new tedious procedure, why doesn't Ms. Walker just eliminate the grace-period. And why has she refused to reference the number of times an employee is allowed to be late before being issued a written warning? Ms. Walker has implemented a policy change that could place the credit union in yet another, legally precarious position. Additionally, isn't the subject of the 7-minute grace period something administrated by Human Resources and not a COO? 

Ordering Supplies 

As part of the credit union plans to reduce spending, Ms. Walker and CFO, Saeid Raad decided to target office supply spending. We don't actually disagree with reducing spending as every business should be conscious of its' spending though Ms. Walker's "plan" seems poorly put together. 

Under Mr. Walker's and Mr. Saeid's plan, every department and branch will be provided a budget of $150.00 though the two failed to specif if this is a monthly, quarterly, or annual budget.  The amount is paltry. Evidently, these two experts don't understand that reducing expenses doesn't mean undermining the credit union's ability to carryout business.

The amount of $150.00 also suggests that the struggling credit union has move from being cost conscious to being frugal. Here are the procedures for ordering supplies outlined by Ms. Walker and Mr. Raad:

  1. Employees will be required to complete a requisition form. That certainly doesn't seem unreasonable.
  2. Before submitting a requisition form, employees must research the cost of the item(s) they are ordering. This includes pens, pencils, notepads, paper clips, staples, etc.  The cost must be included in the requisition form. That seems a little out of the ordinary. 
  3. The completed form will no longer be submitted to the stock room manager but instead, must be submitted to the employee's supervisor. 
  4. The supervisor will approve or deny the request.
  5. If approved, the request will be forwarded to the Accounting Department for review and approval or denial.  
  6. If the request is approved by the Accounting Department, the order will be sent to the stockroom so that it may be ordered. 
Is this an example of Ms. Walker's keen strategical skills?  So how long will it take to order a box of pens? Six months? 


Ms. Waker recently visited the departments located in the South Pasadena branch promoting a new program she recently decided will benefit employees. 

The program provides employees tax-free credit which they can use on medical expenses and daycare. The program is actually a loan though Ms. Walker has been careful not to disclose this in her sales pitch. 

Employees may select a specific monetary amount they wish set aside of medical expense. Whatever amount they choose, will have to be paid back by the end of the year. Any amount not used by the end of the year will be lost and is not applicable for use in the successive year. 

For example, if an employee requests the amount of $1200.00 to cover potential medical needs for the entire year, but only uses $400.00, they will have to pay the entire $1200.00 and lose $800.00 which can never be retried or used in another year. 

Is this an example of how Priority One shows employees "how to win with money"? As we've often written, Priority One is no one's "financial fitness center." 

A few months ago, during an a Branch Manager meeting, Ms. Walker boasted that she could acquire more new business than the entire business development team. If this is an example of her skills as a salesman, may we suggest that she consider a change in career. 


In 2009, President Wiggington hired Sepia Consultants who on a weekend, met the President at the South Pasadena branch. The consultant was escorted by the President to computers assigned to employees who the President knew for a fact, were the blogger, bloggers and friends of the blogger(s). The search for his imagined enemies proved fruitless though payment was issued to Sepia Consultants using credit union funds. 

On June 3, 2010, Ms. Walker introduced her new amended and allegedly, far more effective policy governing confidentiality. Under her revamped policy, employees who use their company-issued computers to visit social media sites including Facebook, MySpace, Twitter and more,  during working hours will receive a written warning and/or be placed on suspension or terminated. Though we are aware that President Wiggington peruses the Internet visiting social media sites and BMW dealer websites, we believe employees are far ore intelligent that to jeopardize their employment mimicking the President. 

During June 3, 2010, the chronically inept Human Resources "clerk", Esmeralda Sandoval, visited every department in the South Pasadena branch and ordered employees to form small groups. She then ordered each employee to read Ms. Walker's amended policy out load to their co-workers. After each employee was forced to read the policy, Ms. Sandoval asked, "Do you understand what you read?" Ms. Sandoval has for years served as managements lapdog and has willing provided fraudulent testimony used in the termination of employees. Though she forced every employee to read the policy out loud and afterwards asked if they understood what they had just read, we believe it's Ms. Sandoval who doesn't understand how foolish she appears to all employees. 


On Friday, July 2, 2010, a memo was issued to all branches by President Wiggington, informing all employees that AVP, Rodger Smock, will no longer approve mileage reimbursements.  

The decision to remove Mr. Smock from approving mileage reimbursement is yet another brainchild of  the COO and her allegedly highly experienced financial planner, CFO,Saeid Raad. 

Under a new procedure developed by them, requests for mileage reimbursements now requre the approval of an employee's supervisor or manager. Once approved, the request is forwarded to Mr. Raad for a secondary approval. So what advantage does Ms. Walker's new procedure provide to employees and the credit union.

We've learned that the reasoning behind the new procedure is to buy the credit union more time when processing reimbursement requests. The procedure will force longer wait periods before reimbursements are issued. Again, is this another example of how Priority One is helping employees "win with money"?


The COO recently revealed that consumer loan delinquencies have increased and that many are loans belonging to now terminated employees. Apparently, the not-so-astute COO doesn't understand the principle that if you terminate an employee, they are left without a job and often have to rely on whatever they can receive from unemployment insurance. Subsequently, former employees have to set priorities of which bills they'll pay. They might choose purchasing food for their children and paying rent and utilities over submitting a monthly payment to their personal loan. 


A few week ago, Consumer Loan Manager, Joseph Garcia, introduced a new, quirky, and fun practice. Each time a loan is funded at the South Pasadena branch, Mr. Garcia picks up a bell which lies atop his desk and rings it several times

Is the ringing of the silly bell intended to motivate employees? Being devoid of magical properties, the purpose of ringing the bell each time a loan is funded is nothing less than absurd. Then again, this is the same manager who a few weeks ago was stripped of his title of Real Estate Loan Manager because of his gross inability to comprehend the procedures governing real estate loan processing. 


During the last month, COO, Beatrice Walker, ordered that all employees do whatever is possible to increase membership. She insists that without new members, business will continue to decline. 

We're surprised that the allegedly seasoned COO believes that the solution to Priority One's financial problems is obtaining more members. She apparently is unaware that every credit union has to make efforts to identify members who have never or rarely, obtained products and services offered by the credit union. The majority of Priority One's members are not recipients of what the credit union offers. 

President Wiggington has made almost no effort to tap into the credit union's vast, disfranchised member sector. Studies show that a credit union has to focus efforts to connect to members who have been actively enrolled in the credit union for 24 to 36 months. And audit of the credit union's records would confirm that many members only have Priority One's minimum $5.00 balance in a checking account and a free convenience checking account with little or no funds.    

Ms. Walker is proving that like President Wiggington; Board Chair, Diedra Harris-Brooks; and AVP, Rodger Smock, she too has no concept of the need to develop new business under existent members. 


Since the start of 2010, it seems the credit union is constantly being visited by auditors. However, on June 1st, another contingent of auditors swept down upon the credit union. We wonder what is causing the surge in visitation? 

We know the waves of auditors have not been hired by the credit union because the President and COO seem unusually apprehensive. On Tuesday, June 15, 2010, during their exit interview, auditors informed the President and COO areas within the busienss which require correction. Of course, it is the President;s and COO's expressions of concern that suggest the news wasn't good. 

Also, during the afternoon of June 15th, Financial Planner (CFO), Saeid Raad, stood on the sidewalk in front of the residential structure located next door to the South Pasadena brnch speaking to a state auditor. Doesn't Mr. Raad have an office? 

Also, while reviewing the credit union's records, auditors have been heard laughing and criticizing the credit union's "poor record keeping." 


Beatrice Walker is a women plagued by uncertainty and confusion. In 2009, she began terminating people she said were unnecessary to the operation and later, she turned her attention to employees the President had labeled "enemies" of his administration.

Though she has fired employees, reduced working hours, and stripped many employees of their medical benefits, she has made little headway in reversing losses originally caused the the inane decisions of President Charles R. Wiggington, Sr. 

One of Ms. Walker's problems is her untamed spending which is depleting the very coffers she's allegedly fighting to fill. Since 2009, she has spent more than $200,000 in total, remodeling the main branch and the Burbank branch and building what has become a failed call center. Her remodeling included painting the South Pasadena and Burbank branches, installing wall to wall carpeting in the South Pasadena office and all new window treatments. She also had the flooring replaced in the employee lounge room and patio. And she had to silver-colored logos commissioned for the South Pasadena and Burbank branches. 


CFO, Saeid Raad
Paid more than $100,000 per year

IT Manager, Randy McBride
Paid more than $75,000 per year


Director of Project Management, Yvonne Boutte
Paid more than $75,000 per year

Loan Manager/Call Center Supervisor, Joseph Garcia
Paid more than $60,000 per year 

Ms. Walker's annual salary approximates $100,000.
President Wiggington's salary is more than $150,000 per year
AVP, Rodger Smock, is paid approximately $100,00 per year

Ms. Walker's cut-backs in spending like those introduced by President Wiggington in 2009, are designed not to touch the salaries or benefits for the management sector. Is this how Priority One is helping members "win with money"?

No doubt, Beatrice Walker is a graduate of the Charles R. Wiggington, Sr. and Diedra Harris-Brooks School of Ethics. Since her arrival, Ms. Walker has adopted an unusual and wholly unethical, wage of requesting personal expense reimbursement.  

When she submits receipts, she tears off the upper portion of the receipt containing the name of the store or company where she made the purchase. Why is she hiding the names of the businesses where she allegedly purchases work-related items? 

Recently the Director of Project Management, Yvonne Boutte, disclosed that Ms. Waler is reporting the costs spent for remodeling the South Pasadena and Burbank branches under depreciation. Evidently, Ms. Walker shares the same obsession for altering reporting as does the President. On a side note, the excess carpeting not used during the remoedling of the main branch was delivered at Ms. Walker's request, to her home in Santa Clarita, all at the cost to the credit union. 

One thing Ms. Walker's manipulation of financial reporting can hide is her record of undisciplined spending. 

To be continued......

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