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August 11, 2005
Air America: Heads Roll At Gloria Wise, Not Piquant?

The New York Post reports this morning that high-level executive departures have rocked Gloria Wise Boys & Girls Club in the wake of the disclosure of almost a million dollars in loans and transfers of government grants to Evan Cohen and Air America. GW also refuted a key claim of Air America in its attempt to distance itself from the shady dealings that kept it on the air:

Just days after the executive director abruptly resigned following Post reports that the club had provided $875,000 in bizarre loans to Air America, two other top officials at the Gloria Wise Boys & Girls Club have quit.

Acting executive director Lorraine Corva who took over after Charles Rosen suddenly resigned last week will be leaving her job on Aug. 26, sources said.

Assistant executive director Jeff Aulenback also resigned, effective immediately, sources said.

Their departures from the embattled social-services agency are tied to the ongoing fallout from the highly unusual and possibly improper loan to Air America, as well as other dubious fiscal practices, sources said.

Piquant hasn't made any management changes in the past week, despite the three abrupt departures from its creditor's executive group. That seems rather fortunate as they continue to get publicly challenged on their assertions regarding the repayment of the money that wound up at Air America instead of serving the needs of the poor children and Alzheimer's patients in the Bronx for which it was earmarked. GW spokesman Jim Grossman told the Post that AA/Piquant still hasn't told the truth about their plans to give the money back:

The left-wing radio network, which showcases Al Franken, last Friday made a $50,000 repayment on the loan to an escrow account controlled by the station's lawyer.

"The [city] Department of Investigation advised Air America to repay $875,000 into an escrow account from which no money can be disbursed without our approval," said DOI spokeswoman Emily Gest.

"Air America has not followed that recommendation."

But an Air America official told The Post yesterday that both sides had agreed to a payment plan months ago and that they were on schedule with their payments.

That was news to the Boys & Girls Club. "Air America has agreed in principle to give the money, but nothing has been finalized yet," Grossman said yesterday.

"They haven't agreed how and when to do it."

Michelle Malkin has this and a number of other links on her post this morning, including original story-breaker Brian Maloney's transcript of a very interesting Al Franken broadcast. North Carolinians Confederate Yankee and John have updates as well. Michelle also reports that one of her readers has found Evan Cohen in Hawaii,and CQ readers will never guess what kind of work that he wants to pursue.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at August 11, 2005 6:29 AM

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