Sunday, August 6, 2017

Was It Wise To Have The Mountain Views News Sponsor Sierra Madre's Water Forum?


Mod: H. Susan Henderson, the occasionally controversial editor and publisher of the weekly Mountain Views News, is an individual with a decidedly checkered past. As you might or might not know, at one point Susan was the #2 official in the California Democratic Party, a position she lost in quite spectacular fashion. Just below is an article titled "Demo Leader Resigns Under Fire" that appeared in The San Francisco Examiner (link) on May 25, 1995. The author is Lance Williams (link), a great journalist who has twice won the prestigious George Polk Award for his reporting. After you've taken a little time to process this information, ask yourself a question. Is Susan really the sort of ethically nuanced individual that should be sponsoring official Sierra Madre events? Faked educational credentials and all?

Demo leader resigns under fire - H. Susan Henderson, onetime Republican turned executive director of the California Democratic Party, has resigned her $78,000-per-year post amid controversy over alleged resume-pumping and questionable expenditures on a party credit card.

State party chair Bill Press announced Henderson's departure Wednesday, the same day The Examiner reported that she had registered to vote as a Republican barely two years before taking the $78,000-per-year Democratic Party post.

The Examiner also reported that the University of California had no record of awarding Henderson a law degree and an MBA, as she had claimed on her resume, and that a Sunnyvale business executive said Henderson had failed to repay a $2,000 loan.

A confidential news source said that California Democrats, who face the crucial 1996 election with a deficit of $1 million, would pay Henderson $25,000 in exchange for her resignation.

In a press release, Press said he had ordered an audit of the state party's books, after receiving an anonymous letter contending that Henderson had improperly run up some $3,000 in spending on a party credit card for items including lingerie and a trip to Disneyland.

Press said the audit found no wrongdoing, but said the matter had become so emotionally draining for Henderson that she decided to resign. He said she would work as a consultant for the party for an unspecified period.

Henderson did not return phone calls. Press declined to respond to questions about whether he had known about Henderson's life as a Republican when he hired her or what steps he had taken to verify her resume. He also refused to comment on the reported $25,000 payment.

Republican glee

If Press was mum, state Republicans were chatty about what they saw as financial disarray at the top of the Democratic organization.

"My take would be that Bill Clinton and Bill Press attended the same school of financial management," quipped Victoria Herrington, spokeswoman for the state GOP. Referring to Henderson, she said, "This is one case where we Republicans don't mind a defection."

San Francisco Supervisor Angela Alioto, a vice chair of the Democratic Party, said she was shocked to learn that Henderson had so recently been a member of the GOP.

"She never mentioned that - she has posed as a dyed-in-the-wool Democrat," Alioto said. "To me, it's much more shocking to find out that she was a Republican than to find out (about the disputed resume.)"

Henderson, a former Oakland business executive, was hired by Press in 1993 as a deputy executive director for Southern California, then was promoted to the top job last year.

She presented an impressive resume: regional coordinator for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, East Bay field director for Democratic U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer's successful 1992 campaign, former president of the East Bay Area Club of Negro Business and Professional Women.

Susan's current "Linked In" page also lists UC Berkeley twice (link).

But other parts of the resume don't appear to check out.

Henderson states that she holds a bachelor's degree in business administration from Ohio State University, but a spokeswoman said Ohio State had never granted a degree to Harriet Susan Henderson or Harriet Poole, Henderson's maiden name.

Henderson's resume also says that she holds an "M.B.A. / J.D." from the University of California, without specifying a campus.

Spokesmen at UC-Berkeley, UCLA and UC-Davis, the three UC campuses that have both law and business schools, said no such degrees had been issued to H. Susan Henderson or Harriet Poole.

Alameda County voter records show that in 1989, Henderson registered as a Republican at an Oakland residence, then registered again as a Republican in 1991 when she moved to another Oakland address.

In March 1992, when the Boxer campaign was getting under way, Henderson changed her registration to Democrat, the records show.

As party executive director, Henderson sat in on top-level strategy meetings and sensitive discussions about the Democrats' plans for winning California for President Clinton in 1996.

In his written statement, Press complained that the anonymous letter about Henderson was "disgusting character assassination," but gave no details about why he had concluded that she had spent party funds properly.

Party credit-card records show that in a three-month period in 1995 she ran up $12,000 in charges, including $74 at a Victoria's Secret lingerie shop in Washington, D.C., $220 at a golf course in Palm Springs, $137 at a Los Angeles beauty-supply outlet and $26 at a laundry.

Mod: There is another Lance Williams report on this matter. What follows is a portion from an Examiner article called "State Demo chief's resume disputed" (link).

link
State Demo chief's resume disputed Henderson's resume also says that she holds an "M.B.A. / J.D." from the University of California, without specifying a campus. Spokesmen at UC-Berkeley, UCLA and UC-Davis, the three UC campuses that have both law and business schools, said no such degrees had been issued to H. Susan Henderson or Harriet Poole.

Spokeswoman Ann Charles said Henderson was not a member of the State Bar. The resume also said that Henderson had been "honored by Who's Who Among American Women" in 1984. An editor with Marquis' "Who's Who of American Women" directory said neither H. Susan Henderson nor Harriet Poole had ever been mentioned in their publication. The editor, Paul Kenney, said he had never heard of a book called Who's Who Among American Women.

The resume does not list Henderson's political views, although some Boxer campaign workers and state party officials said they assumed she was a longtime Democrat.

But voter records show that in 1989, Henderson registered as a Republican at an Oakland residence, then registered again as a Republican in 1991 when she moved to another Oakland address. In March 1992, when the Boxer campaign was getting under way, Henderson changed her registration to Democrat, the records show.

The resume also portrays Henderson as a successful business executive who in 1990 started up a profitable Oakland pool-cover manufacturing business, and then sold it two years later.

But that's not the whole story, said Anthony Raiola of Sunnyvale's Bay Area Spa BrokersRaiola said that for years he bought covers from another Oakland spa-cover firm where Henderson worked as controller.

He said that in 1990 Henderson told him she was going to buy her company out, but needed a $2,500 loan that she promised to repay in one week.

"I said, "Susan, I don't really have the money,' " Raiola recalled, but he ultimately made the loan.

Loan never repaid

He said Henderson paid him $500, then blew off the rest of the debt. Raiola said he obtained a $2,000 judgment against her in Sunnyvale Small Claims Court, but has never been paid.

"I gotta calm down, because my blood is beginning to boil, just thinking about it," Raiola said.

Henderson's problems began in April, when state party leaders received anonymous letters contending that Henderson's resume could not be confirmed and charging that she had made inappropriate expenditures on a party credit card.

Attached to the letters were copies of a MasterCard statement showing that Henderson had run up expenses of $79 at Victoria's Secret, $230 at Disneyland and $139 at a Liz Claiborne shop in Napa.

sierramadretattler.blogspot.com

54 comments:

  1. Sounds like a Republican to me, definitely presidential in this world.

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    1. Victoria's Secret. Too much information.

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  2. Some of this article appears to be repeated?

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    1. There are two SF Examiner articles reproduced here. Some of the material is repetitious, but included for context.

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  3. Ms. Poole has been unmasked.
    A Republian in Name only , gathering information to sell or trade in order to jockey a position within the Democratic party.
    If Ms. Henderson is the sponcer of the Water Forum on Wednesday; I will opt-out and tune into the local cable television service for a re run of that meeting.
    Come to think of it, the city is no longer televising re runs, it is a one time shot or you miss out on information.
    I will make an appointment with the new city manager, that way I won't be wasting my time on the Wednesday Mt. View sponsored forum; the billing is confusing enough as it is.

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    1. I will not attend the event either. I will make appointments with every Council Member,and waste their time by forcing them to listen to my rants.

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    2. Sounds about right. They force us to listen to their baloney.

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    3. I was going to go, but if that liar is going to be involved? Nope.
      I am disgusted at the way people pretend she is not the destructive con that she is.

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  4. So Susan is still claiming the same unearned academic credentials that got her fired when she was a big Dem? At least she is consistent.

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  5. Susan borrowed money and did not pay it back?

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    1. Yes, more than once. Ask her elderly supporters just how much she owes them, or, just how much they "contributed" to help her.

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  6. Resume Pumping.

    "Henderson states that she holds a bachelor's degree in business administration from Ohio State University, but a spokeswoman said Ohio State had never granted a degree to Harriet Susan Henderson or Harriet Poole, Henderson's maiden name ... Henderson's resume also says that she holds an 'MBA/JD' from the University of California, without specifying a campus ... Spokesmen at UC-Berkeley, UCLA and UC-Davis, the three UC campuses that have both law and business schools, said no such degrees had been issued to H. Susan Henderson or Harriet Poole."

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  7. Why doesn't Susan list her having been an Executive Director of the California Democratic Party on her Linked In page?

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  8. Warning spoiler alert, Birds of a feather flock together. So it's no wonder on crook hires another and another and so on, beware of Sierra Madre's city hall and city council members.

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    1. In Sierra Madre things are rarely what they appear to be. How's that UUT tax hike working out for you? Saved the Library yet? Fixed the pipes?

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  9. It is my understanding that Ms. Henderson doesn't live in Sierra Madre anymore. If this is true, can she still legally run the City's adjudicated newspaper?

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    1. No. The address the Mountain Views News lists for itself is a PO Box. That is not adequate to maintain an adjudicated status under California law.
      http://mtnviewsnews.com/v11/htm/n00/contact_us.htm

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    2. You are correct that the paper must maintain a physical address in the area,but she can live wherever she desires,and that was the question at hand.

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    3. How do you maintain a physical address here when you live out of town?

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    4. The publication must have only one principal office of publication and that office is in the city, district, or public notice district for which it is seeking adjudication as 9:24 stated. The proprietor can live wherever it desires

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    5. We're talking about a PO Box, dude. Can't fit a typewriter in there.

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    6. Actually we are talking about if a publisher of a adjudicated paper must live in a certain area. The answer to that is No she can live wherever she desires. You are making a statement that a P.O. box is not adequate to maintain adjudication you may be correct I am not trying to answer a question that was never asked. You are the only one talking about P.O. boxes

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    7. Consider the question asked. Now can you answer it?

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    8. Ok then, let's talk about PO boxes. If that's illegal, can I sue and win?

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    9. You need to ask an attorney.

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    10. The real sticking point about the adjudication is the publication numbers - Henderson was repeatedly asked to give the council those figures, and by delaying it for years, my guess is that she finally got enough numbers by becoming a throw-away in multiple cities.
      It's the DBA funds that keep her in business.

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    11. Great. The paper is taxpayer supported.

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    12. @10:45 what would you sue for? Who would you sue? How have you been harmed? I doubt that you could win,you can definitely sue anyone you desire.

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    13. Google lists the address of the Mountain Views News at 80 W. Sierra Madre Blvd. That would be the Mail Box Express Store.

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  10. the tattler hates as much as trump it is getting to sound like republicans attacking clinton

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    1. The truth always feels like hatred to the guilty.

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    2. A publication (blog in this case) is incapable of hate or any emotion,go back from whence ye came.

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    3. I think 9:23 has a degree in Donutology.

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    4. 9:23, shall we pretend that she didn't steal the paper (which was once excellent) from Katina Dunn, that there wasn't financial malfeasance to the tune of $47,000.00, according to the judge on the case, that she never paid that judgement, that she hasn't hustled seniors for loans that are never paid back? And, oh yeah, that she lies about her credentials?
      Right, it doesn't matter because she's such a good schmoozer.

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    5. Until she pays the Dunns what she owes them from her defeat in court, she doesn't really own the paper. She just squats there.

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  11. Go to the water info session. That the newspaper is "sponsoring" it is immaterial. Just resume padding as per usual for Ms. Susan. The city needs to correct its water department fines penalties billing cycle winter vs summer allocation and anything else the water customer is having to put up with.

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    1. It is a shame that city hall feels it needs to enlist this disreputable person to be effective. If Henderson is involved, then it is more likely the city is interested in creating the illusion of a community consensus for what it wants rather than actually listening to anyone.

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  12. An article in this weekend's MVN states that National Night Out block parties were "held all over town." I only count two. One on Montecito, the other in an old folks home. Do you know of any others?

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    1. It's a small town.

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    2. There was one out in back of the 'Buc. It was also called "Take Out Your Bud Lite Night."

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  13. Judging by the quality of Henderson's reporting, it's possible she never even graduated from high school.

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    1. Or attended PHS. Go Bulldogs!!

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  14. the City Manager commented in a Facebook post that the forum location has changed. it will be held in city chambers because of the large number of people that say they will attend.

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    1. That is confusing. On the city website it still says Hart Park House.

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  15. Can the city be held liable for the Legal Notices printed in her (Susan Henderson) paper, over the time period that she no longer held an adequate address for a adjudicated paper required under California law? For instances, any of the notices that were printed in her paper, that have a possibility of Law Suits against the city?

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    1. No. She attested that her publication meet the requirements and the city acted in good faith,they met our legal responsibility. To win a lawsuit against the citizens of Sierra Madre you must be harmed in some fashion.All she need do is have some paperwork at any address in the area and she is in compliance for the address. Persons that paid for legal notices in her paper would have to prove they were harmed in some fashion,never happen too costly and no benefit. I don't know about her circulation numbers

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  16. Meeting...what meeting?
    Now it is clear as the water that comes from our faucets. It is either here or there. The walking distance is not bad, just the confusion on location, very muddying. Hope the presentation and Q&A wont be the same.

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    1. The new City Manager said things will be different now. More transparent. I guess we will see if that is true.

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  17. The new manager is new to all of the mismanagement that now falls on his time here.
    On this blog, Mr. Engeland has shown that he is up front about the mess he has been handed. Now with what has the appearance of a competent Manager, the town can move forward. This would also be a great time for ALL Council to LISTEN and not interject.

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    1. He could be Sierra Madre's last best hope. Cut him some slack.

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  18. If CETT Development on ONE Carter entered into a court determined decision, would the lack of improperly noticed city meetings in a adjudicated paper that is not legally noticed, have any bearing on law suits?

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    1. Interesting question. Has anything been properly noticed over the last few years?

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