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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Freak Show


Priority One Credit Union's shift in focus from business to an addictive reliance on expense reductions was set into motion by President Charles R. Wiggington, Sr. in early 2009 and magnified by now former and notorious COO, Beatrice Walker.

Unfortunately, the credit union's reliance on cut-backs will probably not be a practice that will dissipate anytime soon unless the President miraculously develops an understanding of marketing, accepts the importance of member service and learns how to listen. Don't expect any of these to ever occur. 

He has been careful to ensure that his often brutal reductions in spending never effect his salary or that of the executive sector and instead, have deeply impacted non-exempt personnel through a wage freeze that was implemented in early 2009, elimination of benefits and reducing marketing and business development budgets. 

Recently, Director of Project Development, Yvonne Boutte, disclosed that "charge-offs have decreased." What she never mentioned was that charge-offs decreased because they were written off. In fact, the amount of accounts referred to collection proceedings remain quite high and many can be attributed to Courtesy Pay, Priority One's overdraft protection which was introduced by Beatrice Walker. Courtesy is a wonderful example of how Priority One Credit Union is not anyone's "financial fitness center" or able to help any member "win with money." 

Though in 2007, President Wiggington ordered reduced efforts made to develop new business amongst employees of the United States Postal Service, in recent months he's made a turn about face. His change in attitude was prompted by the failure of his plan to displace members who are employees of the United States Postal Service with employees and owners of Select Employer Groups. Unfortunately, his sudden interest in employees of the postal sector comes as a time which the postal service is suffering economic set-backs which have forced the closure of postal facilities, laying-off of postal employees and reduced the amount of payroll deposits received from employees of the postal service. A large number of postal employees who have been laid-off have closed their credit union accounts. 

Priority One due to the imprudent decision of President Wiggington is now forced to obtain money where ever it can. This certainly isn't the credit union that for years viewed members as it's First Priority. 


In January 2011, then COO, Beatrice Walker informed numerous employees at the South Pasadena office that she was planning on opening a new branch in Santa Clarita no later than June 1, 2011. According to Ms. Walker, the new branch would be located just outside the gates of the Santa Clarita Processing & Distribution Center located at 28201 Franklin Parkway, Santa Clarita, CA 91383.

She and later, President Wiggington, would boast that the new office was actually being constructed by the USPS and that the annual cost to lease the space would be $1.00.

With consideration to the fact that June 1, 2011, has passed and in light of Ms. Walker's untimely departure, can we expect the opening of the branch, anytime soon?



Priority One CU Intranet, July 28, 2011

President Wiggington has allegedly ordered a tactical change to the credit union's highly corrupt Human Resources Department, allegedly to introduce improvements that will enable the credit union to keep abreast of changes impacting social (?) environments and "the world we live and work" in. The verbose announcement shown above, allegedly written by AVP, Rodger Smock, was actually composed by Robert West. 

The fact is, the change is not motivated by a genuine interest to improve the functionality of the Human Resources Department but rather a reaction by the credit union to disclosures made by Priority One's legal counsel which asserted that over the years, Human Resources has violated credit union policies and laws and failed on a miserable scale to document employee complaints and resolve them. According to Richardson Harman Oberthe
department under leadership of Rodger Smock, had left the credit union vulnerable to lawsuits
as attested by by two lawsuits filed in 2010 and 2011 by former employees. 

We've rewritten, as shown below, Mr. Smock's (actually Mr. West's) notice to employees, just in case the image shown above is difficult to read. 

Author: Rodger Smock (AVP/Senior Vice President/Executive Vice President)
Date: 7/28/2011  12 AM

Please join me in congratulating Robert West and Esmeralda Sandoval.

Robert is being promoted to Director [of] Employee Services and Esmeralda Sandoval to Manager [of] Employee Services.

The concept of "Employee Services" encompasses key competencies of Human Resources/Education functions (i.e., staffing, education, employee engagements and special services). This new concept of Employee Services will allow for POCU to keep pace with the changing social environment within the world we live and work. 

They both will be accepting new responsibilities and certainly new challenges for their new positions.

As stated previously, the change is strictly a preventative measure and one which is wholly insincere. As you will see in the next several months, the only change is the department's name and the Mr. West's and Miss Sandoval's titles (and salaries). Other than that, Rodger Smock will continue serving as the unofficial or should we say, invisible Director over Human Resources.

Portions of the language in the memorandum were plagiarized from numerous consulting sites strewn about the Internet. And we'd like to know that "special services" specifically refers to? 

Mr. Smock/Mr. West wrote, "The new concept of Employee Services will allow for POCU to keep pace with the changing social environment within the world we live and work." Versus what, the social environment outside the world we live in? 


On August 17, 2011, while speaking to CFO, Saeid Raad, Mr. West was heard exclaiming, "I'm not HR anymore!" No, Mr. West, you were never HR. You have no prior experience in HR including no education or training that would qualify you to serve in the department. Your appointment is purely political and no one knows this better than you. What's more, the change affecting Human Resources is only that of its name. The department will remain intact as will your responsibilities. And if you're not HR, then why is their a sign on your door that contains the words, "Robert West, Human Resources"? 

Can someone please explain to Mr. West that contrary to his statement, he remains a member of Human Resources whose name has been changed on paper to reflect a disingenuous attempt to show that the corrupt Human Resources Department is trying to create an impression that it is concerned about the development of all employees. 


Mr. Smock’s/Mr. West's notice to employees may not be written in cuneiform but it remains saturated in ambiguity and is the equivalent of the credit union trying to "pull a fast one." After all, they're being sued and the actions of the Human Resources Department will be a subject of litigation. 

We know that Robert West is completely unqualified to serve in Human Resources and that his position in the department was orchestrated by the President to justify Mr. West's continued employment. But how was it determined that Esmeralda Sandoval would be given the title of Manager?  

Esmeralda Sandoval is a caustic presence at the credit union. In 2009, Beatrice Walker disclosed that Miss Sandoval was not the image of what she wanted in Human Resources. Miss Sandoval is a high school graduate with no education in Human Resources. In 2009, when Miss Sandoval learned that Ms. Walker had targeted her for termination, the clerk enrolled in classes at the University of Phoenix but never completed her course of study. 

In what may have been an attempt at self-preservation, Miss Sandoval spent 2009 and 2010 immersed in providing fraudulent witness statements to the President, to Mr. Smock and to COO, Beatrice Walker. Her statements caused several employees to be persecuted, ostracized and subsequently, terminated. 

And if knowledge was truly the goal of the renamed department, then why didn't they ever use the information provided to them in 2009 and 2010 by consultants, Lillestrand and Associates to introduce changes that might have improved employee performances, created a more cohesive working environment and helped ameliorate some of the damage caused by President   


A few years ago, Training and Education Manager, Robert West, described the credit union as a place "where the devil lives." His statements describing the credit union as the dwelling place of an evil entity stopped when he became the ally and confidant of President Wiggington and more recently, the recipient of a promotion into a position he is ill-qualified to serve in. The fact is, Robert West has never contributed anything to help reverse the effects of the problems created by his "buddy", Charles R. Wiggington, Sr. 

Just as Charles R. Wiggington, Sr. now owes everything to Diedra Harris-Brooks for squashing evidence he sexually harassed a former employee, Robert West now owes everything to President Wiggington for helping him avoid being laid-off in 2010 and earlier this year, when he'd been targeted for removal by COO, Beatrice Walker.

Mr. West has not been necessary to the credit union for many years. The credit union no longer has an official training department and even when it did, Mr. West was only mildly familiar with many of the credit union's processes, often forcing him to induct the assistance of employees who actually do the work. His placement into Human Resources, now referred to Employee Services, was just a ploy by the President to ensure that he could justify the continued employment of the unnecessary, Mr. West.

However, Mr. West who has never contributed anything that actually generates profit, expands business or helps to resolve employee morale issues will probably best remembered for his 2010 performance during an all-staff meeting. During the meeting, he chastised those employees he labeled "the blogger" and "bloggers" and who he labeled "haters" by reading Biblical scripture. The former college disc jokey apparently wanted to prove he is President Wiggington's own personal knight in shining armor. 

Unlike the Employee Services Manager, Esmeralda Sandoval, Mr. West actually maintains an online biography alleging attesting to his expertise as a trainer, financial planning expert, and public speaker. Don't be fooled however, Mr. West is slightly more impressive than he is in person. The robotic and boring trainer lacks the talent or presence to be an effective trainer. 


Mr. West, like President Wiggington, has often violated credit union policy and has been paid by Priority One for hours in which he actually didn't work. He has, at times, been seeing sleeping comfortably in his office during working hours. In 2006, he authored a personal self-help book what at work. The book was not related to business nor was it related to any of his responsibilities as a trainer. 

As stated previously, in 2009, Beatrice Walker targeted him for future termination. At the time, she disclosed the credit union had no need for a trainer. What's more, she found him to be an ineffective leader and concluded he contributed nothing to the credit union's operation. However, the President interceded and managed to stave-off Ms. Walkers plans and eventually justified Mr. West's continued employment by transferring him to the Human Resources Department though Mr. West had absolutely no experience or education in anything related to human resources.

In 2010, Ms. Walker resurrected her intent to expel Mr. West but a letter filed by the then Valencia Branch Manager which accused Ms. Walker of harassment, same-sex sexual harassment, stalking and creation of a hostile working environment, diffused her plan to remove Mr. West. 

So what does Robert West have to say about himself? Well, we’re glad you asked. His biography, shown below, describes is accomplishments:



Robert West, Manager, HR/Education & Training, Greater Los Angeles Area / Financial Services.

  • Western CUNA Management Schools
  • ASTO/USC Institute
  • Ambassador University
  • Connections: 14

If you've ever had to endure listening to one of Mr. West's public addresses you'd quickly realize he is not a gifted or even slightly interesting orator. 

And though he asserts his specialties include "motivational  leadership", "emotional intelligence", "financial literacy, most employees can probably attest they've never witnessed this in any of Mr. West's classes, speeches or even in his 2010 calculated manipulation of staff members. 

He also intentionally omits information about what he studied and fails to state if he ever graduated. 

He did attend classes at Western CUNA Management Schools at the request of the President who approved payment for Mr. West's so-called education though we've yet to see anything that attests that what he learned while at the management schools was applied to the betterment of the credit union. He also fails to state if he ever earned a BA. Additionally, after 50-years, Ambassador University closed its doors 1997. There is also no mention as to what he studied and what degrees, if any, that he earned during 

The credit union's current financial problems indicate that either the President and Board have not tapped into Mr. West's keen and well-honed financial knowledge or he just doesn't have anything to contribute that could improve business. 

As for time management, his hours spent sleeping in his office and the hours spend writing a self-help book during working hours suggest he is ignorant about anything related to time management. 

If he really possesses the knowledge and abilities documented in his biography, then wouldn't the credit union have utilized his alleged expertise in Integrity Selling® and Integrity Coaching® to develop strategies needed to induce growth and resolve the mess created by President Wiggington?  


On August 25th, AVP, Rodger Smock issued a notice to all employees, announcing that on Monday, August 29th, the credit union will be welcoming its new Director of Lending, Cindy Garvin. Until recently, Ms. Garvin was a member of the Business Services and Marketing Department at Clearpath Federal Credit Union in Glendale, California.

Ms. Garvin is actually intended to be the solution to the issues created by President Wiggington and former COO, Beatrice Walker. Unless she has a magic wand, don't expect her to resolve the mountains of blunders caused by Mr. Wiggington and Ms. Walker and sanctioned by Board Chair, Diedra Harris-Brooks. 

According to Rodger Smock, Ms. Garvin has more than 28-years of experience in collections, business development, branch operations and marketing. If she's that qualified, why would she come to work for the declining credit union. As a reminder, former COO, Beatrice Walker, was allegedly an expert in marketing, product development, business development, Human Resources and in developing viable new streams of income. Her July 2011 termination suggests she could not live up to her own hype. 



Source: LinkedIn



Clearpath FCU
Total Income Gain/Loss
Quarterly Earnings/Losses
12/2010 – 06/2011

Dec 2010

March 2011

June 2011

Clearpath's performance in 2010 is not a reflection of Ms. Garvin's abilities but it does make one wonder why Priority One, a credit union in continuous decline, would hire an officer from a credit union whose financial standing denotes failures. Would any of you hire Charles R. Wiggington, Sr. to oversee your company's operations? 

So will Ms. Garvey succeed in carrying out her assigned responsibilities or will she meet the same fate as Beatrice Walker? 


In October 2006, then Vice President of Operations revealed that he planned on implementing a sector of Assistant Vice Presidents, effective January 1, 2007, the date he was scheduled to begin his new role as President and CEO of the then growing credit union. 

Of the four officers he intended to promote, two, Aaron Cavazos and Sylvia Perez, had a complied a well-documented history of abuses against employees.  A third, Liz Campos, was known to commonly borrow money from co-workers and frequently overdraw her credit union checking account. Despite her abysmal mismanagement of her personal finances, President Wiggington chose to promote her. In October 2006, Mr. Wiggington stood in the lunchroom in the South Pasadena branch speaking to Director of Human Resources, Rodger Smock, and in the presence of several employees who sat eating lunch, told Mr. Smock,  "I'm going to have to talk to Liz about her checking account." Mr. Wiggington never did and on January 1, 2007, Mrs. Campos began her knew though short-lived role as one of the President's new AVP's. Clearly unqualified to serve as AVP and like President Wiggington began abusing her authority. In March 2007, an anonymous letter was sent to then Director, David L. Davidson, advising him that Mrs. Campos had overdrawn her account more than 50 times during the period of 9/05/06 to 1/02/07. The Director delivered the letter to the credit union's attorney who in turn, ordered an investigation and audit of Mrs. Campos' credit union accounts. An investigation soon revealed that she had been kiting which is a federal offense and at the recommendation of the attorney, Mrs. Campos was terminated. 

However, despite the illegality of her actions, the President became infuriated promising publicly to "I'm going to get Dave Davidson." Both an irrational and disturbing response revealing that Charles R. Wiggington, Sr. is a man incapable of differentiating between right and wrong. 

The fact is, Mrs. Campos abuses were all known by Mr. Wiggington. He after all was the Vice President of Operations when most of the abuses occurred which means, he is the only one would could approve reversing each NSF fee incurred by Mrs. Campos. Though he admitted that normally it is he who approves or denies NSF fee reversals for employees, he insisted that everyone of the more than 50 NSF fees were reversed without his knowledge by the Member Services Department. A lie, no doubt. Here is the infamous anonymous letter which was used to expose Mrs. Campos' violation of federal law. 



The abuses and violations of credit union policies and state and federal laws could never have occurred without the involvement of the Human Resources Department and it's Director, the incompetent and chronically corrupt, Rodger D. Smock. 

Mr. Smock's motivation may simply be retaining his employment. He is over 70 years old and not easily employable. He has intentionally chosen not to document and investigate employee complaints and though policy states quite clearly that a grievant will be informed of how their concerns and complaints were resolved, he has after many years, failed to do this in every single complaint ever filed with his department. In the end, Mr. Smock is corrupt, as unethical and as guilty of committing egregious acts as are President Wiggington and Board Chair, Diedra Harris-Brooks. 

The following complaint against AVP, Sylvia Perez, was filed by a Business Development Representative and submitted to the attention of Rodger Smock. Like all other complaints filed over the years, Mr. Smock never investigated the grievant's contentions. He also never provided a response to the grievant. Like any concern sent to Mr. Smock, the complaint was ignored. 

  • The form described in the Business Development Representative's letter did not contain the credit union's logo or mandated headers. 
  • It also did not contain required disclaimer language.
  • There was also no statement ensuring protection of the member's personal information. 

Despite the fact the letter was out-of-compliance with credit union policy and state mandates, neither, Sylvia Perez or Rodger Smock could find anything wrong or inappropriate with the letter. Then again, in 2008, Mrs. Perez and Mr. Smock used fraudulent information to terminate the then newly hired Van Nuys Branch Manager who discovered that Mrs. Perez had, over a period of several years, never provided training to any of her staff in the proper and legally mandated procedures used to count, issue, and bundle cash. The self-righteous Mrs. Perez is never one who accepts accountability for her heinous behaviors and irresponsible acts and who escaped disciplinary actions that should have been leveled against her for her overt violations of credit union policies and state laws. Her ability to escape retribution was not because she is clever but because Rodger Smock is unethical and ignored complaints that exposed Mrs. Perez of wrong doing. 

In retaliation to the Business Development Representative's letter, Mrs. Perez launched a bitter campaign, slandering the employee publicly and labeling him a "troublemaker" and accusing him of being "insubordinate". Mr. Smock joined Mrs. Perez and complained to the President, accusing the Business Development Representative of insubordination. 

In spite of  her unethical proclivities, in 2007, Mrs. Perez was appointed head of the WOW Committee. The committee's purpose was to create a cohesive working environment that fostered solidarity, hope, and happiness within the workplace. On paper, it was a wonderful idea. The problem with the WOW Committee's efforts is that they were being directed by the dishonest, controlling, hyperactive, insolent and abuse Mrs. Perez. You couldn't have picked a worse leader to head a committee whose goal was to foster a healthy working environment. 

The committee, like much implemented by and under President Wiggington, was short-lived. It's members began resigning because Mrs. Perez became insufferable. Some complained that she is aggressive, tries to dominate the members and loves grandstanding to make certain that she is fully credited for everything and anything done by the committee. 

If Mrs. Perez is monstrous, it's because she has been enabled by the ethically bankrupt, Rodger Smock. It is he who has enabled the abuses of the President and some managers and it is his disdain for rules and laws that has helped perpetuate the egregious acts committed by the credit union's executive sector and which has allowed good, hard-working employees to be slandered, abused and ultimately expelled. 


Since Charles R. Wiggington, Sr. was appointed President on January 1, 2007, we've witnessed frequent changes to the credit union's so-called, corporate structure. We've seen the introduction of drastic expense reductions and we've seen good employees slandered and terminated. We've also watched as the President brings on new, highly paid executives to try to make order of the messes he's created. What we don't see is any improvement. 

  • Mr. Wiggington's $600,000 phone system proved and expensive debacle. 

  • His hiring of Beatrice Walker to serve as his personal hitman, exacerbated the credit union's internal problems and further taxed the credit union's financial resources. 
  • His inability to create effective marketing strategies resulted in the closure of the Redlands and Valencia branches and the laying off of a large number of employees. 

According to the ad posted a few months ago on job boards, employment websites, industry periodicals and websites, the credit union was in search of a Director of Lending who would be paid approximately $69,000 per year. The person hired by the Board of Directors is Cindy Garvin, but does she possess the experience, talent and patience to try and delve through the chaotic array of blunders created by the President, exacerbated by the former COO, and sanctioned by Board Chair, Diedra Harris-Brooks? 

Adding to the fray is the immense of money the credit union is spending on consultants who are allegedly trying to resolve the credit union's horrendous public reputation. The problem at Priority One is that the cause of the credit union's decline remains in place. What's more, the Board and it's abhorrent Chair, Diedra Harris-Brooks, have decided to retain and protect the President despite his far flung failures. It makes no sense except that this is a highly unethical and amoral body of Directors. 

And why has Priority One's spending on "legal" more than quadrupled since January 1, 2007? What exactly is the credit union spending so much money on that requires the constant use of attorneys?

The cycle of destructive acts has also been enabled by Human Resources and its corrupt Director, Rodger Smock, who has violated policies and state and federal laws and whose actions provoked the filing of lawsuits by two former employees. 

Ms. Garvin will likely fail because what the President and Board Chair will continue to do, is set new executives up for failure. You can't get good fruit from a bad tree and Mr. Wiggington and Mrs. Harris-Brooks are incapable of producing anything that is good for the credit union, good for members and good for employees. It's just not their forte.    

“No legacy is so rich as honesty.”
William Shakespeare

Monday, September 5, 2011

In the Black


We have wonderful news. Priority One Credit Union has finally extricated itself from the RED. After years of reporting only monthly losses, during the month of June, the credit union reported net income at an impressive $834,608. That is indeed good news. 

Of course, we have to approach any disclosure to success by the credit union, with the utmost caution. After all, President Charles R. Wiggington, Sr. is known to employ manipulative financial reporting practices including transferring funds from credit union ledgers ("GL") and fraudulently reporting these as profit. 

Because the President and none of the other officers at the credit union have ever responded to our requests they provide evidence of the alleged and infrequent profits reported by the credit union, we thought we'd revisit some of Priority One's past, financials. 

  • On 12/31/06, the date former President, William E. Harris retired, Priority One's asset size was $172,250,649. During the first quarter of 2008, President Wiggington informed the Board of Directors that each month since the beginning of the year, Priority One had sustained millions of dollars in losses of net income. 
  • In mid-2008, in an effort to allegedly offset losses and to increase the credit union's worth on paper, the Board approved the borrowing of $20 million from the credit unions' line-of-credit, something no other President of the credit union had ever done in its more than 80 year history. The cost of the deception forced the credit union to pay between $30,000 and $59,000 in monthly interest against the loan. This was also the period in which President Wiggington announced he was "streamling" and working smarter. 
  • By march 31, 2008, the credit union's net income declined by $6 million, reducing the credit union's asset worth to $166,570,752. 
  • On June 30, 2008, the credit union reported its asset size at $171,310,441 however, after deducting the unpaid $20 million from their reported worth, their actual size was $151,310,441.
  • On March 31, 2009, the credit union reported its asset size at $178,958,351 but following deduction of the unpaid $20 million loan, their actual worth was $158,958.351.
  • On June 31, 2009, the credit union reported net income at $184,046,965 but the actual amount was $164,046,965, after deduction of the $20 million loan borrowed in mid-2008 by the President. At the time, the credit union had lost approximately $8 million since Charles R. Wiggington, Sr. became President on January 1, 2007.
  • In September 2009, the credit union paid $10 million against the $20 million loan.
  • On September 31, 2009, the credit union reported its asset size as $168,211,115 though their actual asset size was $158,211,115 (after deduction of the remaining $10 million unpaid balance due on the original $20 million loan). 
  • By December 2009, their asset size declined to $155,835,129 ($165,8435,129 reported net income minus $10 million).
  • Charles R. Wiggington, Sr. was appointed President on January 1, 2007. From 01/01/07 though 12/31/09, total losses of net income approximated $17 million.  
  • In February 2010, the President and COO, Beatrice Walker, disclosed that Priority One generate profits of over $200,000 during the month of January 2010.
  • In March 2010, the accounting department disclosed that profits were never generated in January. The profits alluded to by President Wiggington and COO Walker were actually monies transferred from one of the credit union's general ledgers and fraudulently reported the transferred amount as profit.  


You couldn't make up the things that happen at Priority One Credit Union. Since 2007, the credit union has been the site of far flung scandals, usually perpetrated by the President, enabled by Board Chair, Diedra Harris-Brooks, and assisted by the credit union's other incompetent executive officers. 

This past June, the credit union along with its attorneys worked frantically to create a defense to respond to the allegations contained in the lawsuit filed by former Burbank Branch Manager, Linda Nisely. The former officer alleges she was subjected to age, race, and gender discrimination. Ms. Nisely is one of the few White employees hired by the credit union. Priority One hires few Asians or Whites, primarily hires Latins and Blacks. Hiring is performed by Rodger Smock who is also White but who has disclosed in the past, that he hires according to what the Board and President have ordered him to do. The Board is comprised of 4 Black Directors and the President is Black. On the other hand, Priority One's membership is made up of Whites, Asians, Latins and Blacks. What's more, the credit union was founded by White postal carriers. 

In early 2008, Board Chair, Diedra Harris-Brooks, exceeded her assigned authority and ordered that she be provided the drafts of all impending promotions so that she could review and approve these. According to AVP, Rodger Smock, Mrs. Harris-Brooks wanted to make certain that all advertising contained images of Afro-Americans since in her opinion, the majority of the credit union' s member are Afro-Americans. She was again, incorrect. 

The credit union and its attorneys, Richardson, Harmon, Ober, are fervently working to concoct a defense that successfully opposes everyone of Linda Nisely's allegations. 


Mrs. Nisely was initially hired to serve as Assistant Branch Manager of the now defunct, Valencia branch. 

In 2009, the credit union transferred Assistant Burbank Branch Manager, Nora Neale-Torres, to the Valencia branch and promoted her to the post of Branch Manager. The reason why Mrs. Neale-Torres was transferred is because the Valencia branch was physically closer to her home in Lancaster, California and because the position of Branch Manager had become available at the Valencia office. 

The credit union also decided to transfer Mrs. Nisely to the Burbank branch where she was promoted to Branch Manager. The reason for transferring Mrs. Nisely is that the Burbank branch was physically closer to her home in Temple City, California. Logistically, both transfers made sense. 

In her allegations against Priority One, Mrs. Nisely alleges that the credit union promoted Mrs. Neale-Torres and transferred her to Valencia only because she is Latin. Mrs. Nisely also states that she was never contacted and asked if she wanted to transfer to the Burbank branch and that the reason why she wasn't first consulted about the transfer is because she is a White woman.  .

There has to be some sense of reasonableness to any allegation and we just don't comprehend Mrs. Nisely's complaint, for the following reasons: 
  • The drive from Mrs Nisely's home in Temple City, California to Valencia, California is a total of 106 miles roundtrip whereas the drive from Temple City to Burbank and back is a total of 54 miles. Is Mrs. Nisely kidding? We're not in anyway detractors of Mrs. Nisely's decision to file a lawsuit against the credit union but the fact is, the miles driven by her to and from work was reduced by almost approximately 50%. She is clearly trying to vilify what was a decision to accommodate her driving.  
  • With the transfer, Mrs. Nisely was promoted to the post of Burbank Branch Manager and granted an increase in salary. This again benefited her. We can't fathom that this could ever be construed as a negative, except maybe by Ms. Nisely. 
Contrary to her allegations, Mrs. Nisely was promoted despite the fact she is a White female. Where is the discrimination? In fact, the credit union doesn't often hire White people. In fact, we consider the credit union's Board to be staffed by mostly racist Directors. One reason we believe they are racist is that in October 2006, Directors O. Glen Saffold, Thomas Gathers, and Janice Irving disclosed that they selected Charles R. Wiggington, Sr. to to succeed William E. Harris as President because "the credit union needs a Black President." So skin color trumped competency. If one were to believe Mrs. Nisely's allegation that she was discriminated against because she is White, then how does she explain her promotion to Branch manager of the Burbank office? 


In June, former CFO, Manny Gaitmaitan, was served a subpoena and ordered to attend a deposition scheduled to take place on July 21, 2011 at the offices of Richardson, Harmon and Ober in Pasadena, California. The intent of the deposition was to obtain testimony from the former CFO that would attest that the reason Mrs. Nisely was terminated was because the company could no longer afford to keep her employed. 

Of course, Richardson, Harmon and Ober's purpose for subpoenaing Mr. Gaitmaitan were undermined by statements made in early 2010, by former COO, Beatrice Walker, who boasted during a meeting with Branch Managers and AVP's that she was planning on terminating Mrs. Nisely and that would wait six (6) months before hiring a new Assistant Branch Manger. Ms. Walker explained that under state law, a company may terminate an employee using the excuse that their position is being phased and then, wait six (6) months before refilling the post. She said it "is a wonderful way to get rid of people you don't want and then legally, replace them." 

Ms. Walker also could also not refrain from sharing what she should have known constitutes personal and confidential information and advised the branch managers and AVP's that the reason she targeted Mrs. Nisely for termination is that AVP, Sylvia Perez, had lodged several complaints accusing Mrs. Nisely of refusing to visit the community in Burbank because she allegedly suffered problems with her legs. 

However, while Mr. Gaitmaitan was answering questions, the deposition was abruptly ended because of objections form Mrs. Nisely's attorney. The attorneys objected to the line of questioning by Priority One's attorneys. The initial disagreement escalated into a full blown argument concluding with a postponement of the deposition though it was agreed to resume the deposition at a later date. Because Mr. Gaitmaitan lives in Lake Castaic, California, both parties offered to reconvene at his residence. 

The decision to call Mr. Gaitmaitan as a witness for the credit union ignores the fact that in 2009, due to his refusal to alter financial reporting, Mr. Gaitmaitan found himself ostracized by President Wiggington; COO, Beatrice Walker; and AVP, Rodger Smock. The three entered into a childish campaign shunning the CFO and which in time, forced Mr. Gaitmaitan's resignation. The dysfunctional trio forced the CFO out for refusing to compromise ethics and only one month following his departure (on 12/31/09), the three altered the January 2010 Monthly Income Statement to show profits that never occurred and to reduce the actual amount of losses. 


This past June, former Valencia Branch Manager and personal friend of Employee Services Manager, Esmeralda Sandoval, Nora Neale-Torres was subpoenaed at her home. 

Before being subpoenaed, Mrs. Neale-Torres, was contacted by an attorney from Richardson, Harmon, and Ober and asked if she would testify. A few days before being subpoenaed, Mrs. Neale-Torres asked her "friend", Esmeralda Sandoval to please not provide her address or telephone number to attorneys, but Miss Sandoval, who is known as the company stoolie, violated her friend's wishes. 

When she returned home a few days later, she discovered a car parked in her driveway, blocking her entry into her garage. A woman stepped out and served her a subpoena. Mrs. Neale-Torres discovered that she was being subpoenaed by Mrs. Nisely's attorneys who had gotten her address and telephone number from Richardson, Harmon and Ober's attorney. 

During  the deposition, Mrs. Mrs. Neale-Torres described Mrs. Nisely as lazy, abusive and a racist who hates Latins. Without actually asking Mrs. Nisely about how she feels about Latins, the popular consensus at Priority One is that she does hates Latins. 

Following the deposition, Richardson, Harmon and Ober's attorney contacted Board Chair, Diedra Harris-Brooks and President Wiggington informing them that Mrs. Neale-Torres had been subpoenaed by Mrs. Nisely's attorney but her statements made during the deposition actually served to impugn Mrs. Nisley's character. The President would later giddily divulge that Richardson, Harmon and Ober's attorney said Mrs. Neale-Torres agreed to testify that Mrs. Nisely:
  • Was abusive to staff
  • Was a racist who hates Latins
  • Refused to visit the communities served by the Burbank branch
  • Was lazy and unproductive while at work, spending hours in her office, perusing the Internet and shopping instead of working.
What's more, Richardson, Harmon and Ober's attorney was so impressed by the potential impact Mrs. Neale-Torres' testimony would have upon Mrs. Nisley's allegations that hey offered to represent Mrs. Neale-Torres at no cost to herself though clearly, Priority One would be billed for her testimony. 

It appeared to be a stroke of good luck for the corrupt President, COO, and Board Chair. But their hope in Mrs. Neale-Torres' testimony would be would be short-lived. 


If Mrs. Nisely was known to be a racist who abused staff and refused to carryout her assigned responsibilities, which by the way, are all violations of credit union policy, then why did COO, Beatrice Walker terminate her using the excuse that the credit union was phasing out Mrs. Nisely's position because the credit union could no longer afford to pay her? 

Ms. Walker like President Wiggington are not even proficient at treachery. What do these two actually do well because it certainly isn't the ability to create new business or their addiction to undermine employee reputations?

And if Mrs. Nisely were truly a horrendous officer then why was she transferred from the Valencia branch where she served as Assistant Branch Manager and transferred to the Burbank branch where she was promoted to Branch manager? 

And if racism is to be a weapon wielded by the the credit union's attorney, then their probably going to have to explain why on May 5, 2010, COO, Beatrice Walker, publicly described the "Mexican" employees employed by the credit union as "members of the Mexican Mafia"? The President, Human Resources and the Board are well aware of her racist and inflammatory statements yet to date, have refused to take disciplinary action against the COO. Under credit union policy,racist acts and statements will result in termination. Why hasn't Beatrice Walker been terminated?  

We know Mrs. Nisely. We also know that some of Mrs. Neale-Torres' statements are true and witnessed by many employees. We also know that the President and Rodger Smock were well aware of her abusive tendencies yet in the end, they didn't use insubordination, creation of a hostile work environment or racism as the reason for terminating the Branch Manager. Instead, they chose to use the excuse that Priority One could no longer afford to pay her salary though based on Beatrice Walker's boasting, she intended to replace Mrs. Nisley within six months following her termination. 

    Mrs. Neale like former CFO, Manny Gaitmaitan, was harassed and eventually expelled from the credit union. In the months before she resigned, Mrs. Neale-Torres was subject to a constant campaign of harassment perpetrated by AVP, Sylvia Perez. 

    In 2009, two employees of the Valencia branch, Judith Barajas and Dana Gilliam entered into a campaign that disparaged Mrs. Neale-Torres' reputation to notorious AVP, Sylvia Perez. Mrs. Perez never verified what she was told but instead launched a campaign which constantly scrutinized Mrs. Neale-Torres' abilities, questioned her work ethic, and level accusations that she was failing to carryout her assigned responsibilities. On a side note, if the names of Judith Barajas and Dana Gilliam sound familiar is because these are the two same women who provided Beatrice Walker fraudulent testimony while she exacted a vicious attack on the last Valencia Branch Manager. 

    It's rather peculiar that Mrs. Perez chose to target Mrs. Neale-Torres who had a established a well-documented record as a successful Business Development Representative and later, a successful Assistant Branch Manager. 

    What's more, Mrs. Perez was assigned to the Burbank branch, the same office where Linda Nisely served as Branch Manager, yet apparently never documented any of the violations of policy which would be subsequently revealed by Mrs. Neale-Torres during her deposition at the offices of Richardson, Harmon and Ober

    Exasperated and tired, Mrs. Neale eventually resigned.  However, before resigning, Mrs. Neale-Torres contacted both President Wiggington and AVP, Rodger Smock, and told them she was contemplating resigning because she could no longer endure harassment at the hands of Mrs. Perez. Neither office felt impelled to conduct an investigation of her allegations. 

    On yet another side note, a few weeks following her departure from the credit union, Mrs. Neale was contacted at home by Mrs. Perez who apologized for the abusive treatment she subjected her to. We guess, it was just an attempt by the horrible AVP to free herself off any guilt she felt for the abuses she perpetrated against Mrs. Neale-Torres. 

    And though Mrs. Neale-Torres may believe Linda Nisely is a racist, the fact is she was forced to resign because of abuses perpetrated by Mrs. Perez, a Latina, and Mrs. Barajas, another Latina and Miss Gilliam, a Black woman. 

    As for Mrs. Nisely, she going to have to find something a lot more convincing than the fact she was not informed she was being transferred to the Burbank Branch where she would be promoted to serve as that office's Branch Manager. Currently, her allegations are preposterous if not outright silly. What's more, over the years of her employment there were many complaints filed against her with Human Resources though as is typical of AVP, Rodger Smock, the allegations were not investigated. 

    Though we fully understand that attorneys hired to represent a defendant must raise defenses using evidence they uncover, we are starting to get the impression that the credit union's legal counsel may be prone to unscrupulous behaviors and if so, that makes them bottom feeders. 

    Priority One's deficient Board is using credit union monies to fabricate a defense that will ideally, enable them from paying Mrs. Nisely a cent. Yet, they approved paying Beatrice Walker more than $100,000 per year whose personal behaviors and failed enterprises resulted in her termination after only two-years of employment. She was paid approximately $200,000 before it was decided she wasn't succeeding. The same Board has not only maintained Charles R. Wiggington, Sr.'s continued employment but allow him to be paid more than $150,000 per year, not including bonuses. If anything, just pay Mrs. Nisely a small, tidy settlement and send her on her way. After all, they had no problems with her when she was insubordinate or while she was abusing employees. 


    In June and again in July, Consumer Loan Manager, Joseph Garica, disclosed that loan funding is down and that President Wiggington is "worried." Mr. Garcia maybe more than a little misinformed. New membership development has taken a large dip while account closures have increased, particularly amongst employees of the United States Postal Service who represent the credit union's largest single sector of its entire membership. We also recently noticed that the credit union is refusing to adjust references to their actual number of members. The President doesn't want the public to know that account closures have substantially increased. 

    However, Director of Project Management, Yvonne Boutte, recently boasted the charge-offs have decreased though she failed to mention that the number of accounts referred for collection proceedings have increased. 

    Caustic AVP, Sylvia Perez, recently stated that the credit union's Monthly Income Statements shows that "business is great" proving she either doesn't understand the information provided in the statements or she's lying or she read the Monthly Income Statements belonging to another credit union. 

    The evidence- Monthly Income Statements and quarterly Financial Performance Reports prove Priority One is a credit union in decline. Despite the EVIDENCE, the President and his stoolies insist everything is great at a credit union's whose asset size is shrinking and that is the subject of lawsuits filed against it by former employees. 

    Our advice to anyone choosing to embrace the President's verbal assurances is that they remember this is a man who believes his own fabricated hype and who will never provide documentation to prove his statements but hopes in earnest that you'll believe anything he says at face value. 
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