Trust is one of those things that takes a long time to build, and can be destroyed in one minute. People seek trust in others, and companies hope that their employees are trustworthy. The trust that you have in someone is often times relative to the position and relationship that you have with them. The more that a person has the ability to help or hurt you, the more trust that you will need in them (that they will help you and not hurt you). Simply put, in matters that are important to you, is the person you are relating to or doing business with “trustworthy”?
In reading the Washington Post today, there is an article about a woman who was entrusted by the Association of American Medical Colleges to do administrative functions for them. Ephonia Green (is her name an indication of something?) embezzled over $5 million dollars from the non-profit, largely by creating phony invoices and opening bank accounts for phony enterprises in order to pay herself by looting her employer over an 8 year period. When you read the article linked here and included below, see how many times you see the theme “trust”. The organization wants answers, as they try to understand why the person they trusted would do such a thing, while the woman apparently offered none. Apparently, she needs a therapist to “..help her come to terms with her misconduct.” Good luck with that, and don’t hold your breath waiting.
Contracting fraud, designed to ultimately line the pockets of all parties involved, is not a new phenomenon in the non-profit, for-profit or even government sectors. Fraud within our defense departments has been rampant for decades, a fact that President Obama vowed to fight when he took office. You can see his procurement comments by clicking HERE. Such actions became necessary when it became obvious that the system based upon trusting people on their word alone (or rank) was shown to be flawed and costly. The case of the high-ranking Air Force procurement officer Darleen A. Druyun made headlines in 2006 when she was found to have been instrumental in one of the largest contracting scandals with Boeing that involved fraud, insider information and a sense of entitlement on her part.
What a way to honor the country that you took an oath to defend! Weaken them by stabbing them in the back financially by stealing from within.
It’s great that Mrs. Green is going to repay the $5.1 million by selling the house that she partially used those stolen funds to qualify for and acquire. Selling her sideline business may not put a dent in that $5.1 mil if she ran IT with the same principals she used to get the money to fund it, so good luck with that. Same thing with the Acura, timeshare and whatever else she spent the money on. My bet would be to do a search on her social for the past few years, to see what her tax return says about entities that reported any financial activity for her. People who are cunning enough to do fraud, are often brazen enough to tuck some of it away as a reminder of the fraud they perpetrated on their victims. It’s how serial killers often get caught: with a memento of the victim and crime in their possession. Those victims also trusted the WRONG person. Where there is smoke, there is usually fire, as some of the posters here have said!
Here is a post on trust from a great guy that I know. He sums it up pretty well: