HSV Community News, Events, Opinions, People, and Places

HSV – What Went Wrong

By Lloyd Sherman and Diana Podawiltz, February 4, 2021

Following the release of the story by the Voice this last week and the failure of complete answers supplied by both Diana and Lloyd, and while we were attempting to take a high road in not keeping this fiasco alive, we also felt it was necessary to provide further details.

When Diana & Lloyd ran for the Board, they did so to bring business-based management and stop operating our $30M + operation as a playground using the “good ole boy” concepts. We are blessed to be owners of a very beautiful and unique place, and we wanted an opportunity to give back to the community we love.

These two former chairs were saddened, appalled, and disgusted at the harm done to our Village at the last board meeting at the hands of our Board of Directors. It’s unfathomable to us why a Board would release in its entirety a personnel document that contains legally actionable items jeopardizing our association when the resignation letter onto a non POA FB page on Monday evening. Then, 2 days later, the board allows a resigned employee to be recorded on the Internet and make a statement on a local radio station to rant and denigrate many of our residents and two former Chairs of the Board with misleading, opinionated, and inaccurate statements. Mr. King says he has emails, photos of texts, etc. When this was first mentioned in a Board Eblast when Lloyd resigned, we asked for this documentation to be given to us; Request Denied. Diana was told the information did not pertain to her even though the press release written by Pam Avila said “former board members.” After Wednesday’s Board meeting, Diana asked for a Special Meeting so the comments made about Lloyd & she could be addressed. Again, the request was denied as it was deemed to not be in the best interest of the Village.

Lloyd Sherman and Diana campaigned together for a seat on the board in 2019. Both of them had a platform whereby they wanted to reduce overhead, cut the fat and get the Village out of a very one-sided contract. Others have run with the same “promises”. We stuck to our word. Diana cannot begin to tell you how many employees thanked her this past Spring and Summer because they could finally come to work without “feeling oppressed.” That the environment was changing so much for the better because of the message Diana was promoting that we were a team: Board, all Staff, and owners.

Lloyd and Diana have no idea what happens to certain people when they’ve been on the board for a while where they seem to get “power fever” or something and start turning a blind eye. Lloyd and Diana never wavered. We never wanted to resign but were left with little choice by the actions of our fellow Board members. The residents of this Village were counting on “the Calvary” (LTD) in joining Diana on the board; we would have the majority vote, be able to make changes to the bylaws to provide more board control of operations.

One of the most important things we needed was to make the Corporate Treasurer position a volunteer position reporting directly to the Board. This also removes the double jeopardy of a staff accountant (no one can serve 2 masters) and reduces the workload for paid staff. The Corporate Treasurer’s job is to analyze and tell the story of the financial statements prepared by staff. This position is also responsible for investing our reserve funds and move money as needed. This is something that’s been sadly lacking for years. All of the checks and balances were removed, board control (a campaign promise by many and verbal agreement from appointees) was decimated by Diana’s removal as chair and subsequent board resignation. It’s a real shame that the exemplary job being done by Wayne Foltz was totally trashed by the recent events. Diana feels worse about Wayne’s denigration with falsehoods than her own as she asked for him to begin volunteering to help the POA in June 2019. He first served diligently beginning in 2019 serving on the Budget Committee, moved to the Finance Committee, and then to the Finance and Planning Committee, which were chartered to be chaired by the Corporate Treasurer.

Wayne has an accounting background and also worked as a money manager – a perfect fit. Diana met Wayne at Pickleball, we never socialized, but it was a great business relationship for the POA. As far as the investigation that Charles referred to, he’s wrong about the findings. It’s my understanding from the several employees involved in the research that the pieces of the puzzle were very close to being in place when Wayne was removed.

Responding to some of Charles King’s misleading statements:

Let’s begin with the first time we met him. His interview was arranged & scheduled by Director Garrison who was the lead in the recruitment process. Garrison did not want Diana & Lloyd’s involvement in the process. As this was a last-minute visitation, Lloyd made lodging arrangements for one night, and then both of us had limited access to Mr. King during his short stay.  

Diana was scheduled to meet Mr. King at the Admin Building on Saturday morning before a previous scheduled Pickleball match. Garrison was supposed to bring the candidate by the courts for a tour later that morning for a tour; no show. Diana asked Garrison repeatedly if they would like for her to join them later in the afternoon; the answer was no, “we’ll see you at dinner.”

The next morning, Chair Podawiltz received a call from Director Garrison telling her, “go to church and pray, I don’t want your presence at the job offer breakfast.” Diana told him she would be joining them for breakfast as the offer was unsigned, and she was the only board member with signature authority.

Lloyd and Diana did meet with Charles on or near August 1st. They informed Charles that the POA was top-heavy, that our interim GM had presented us with a reorganization plan prior to handing over the reins. We briefly discussed these changes and strongly encouraged him to utilize the knowledge and expertise of our interim GM. John Paul also made it very clear to Charles that he was available. Charles never called.  Mr. King was never given direct orders to fire anyone.

Diana finds it very perplexing that she had such a huge role in Charles’ job dissatisfaction as she was only on the board for 12 days of his 5 1/2-month tenure. And during that time made it perfectly clear she was available to help in any manner. He never once reached out nor; did he speak with her when she was at the POA working with Ella. He had a full plate and she understood he was very busy meeting the staff. Diana also reached out to him in October after COVID recovery to ask how he and his family were doing. It was a very pleasant exchange.

Diana Podawiltz and Charles King Conversing at King Meet and Greet
Diana Podawiltz Welcomes Charles King at Meet and Greet

Mr. King also alleged during his rant that Lloyd and he met only once. This is a total fabrication. Lloyd had several individual meetings with Mr. King in addition to Strategy Sessions. Mr. King should have been painfully aware that, in particular, Lloyd was asking for more communication from him to both the Board and the property owners. Which, BTW, never happened. In fact, we heard more in this last board meeting about what staff was doing than we ever heard from Mr. King.

During his rant on Wednesday, Charles discussed a personnel issue and very much misrepresented the facts.  Everything that took place regarding the alleged personnel issue was done under the advice of our legal counsel at Rose Law Firm and administered by the Interim GM.

Mr. King further alleged that Lloyd was conducting nefarious investigations into employees. Another total fabrication. What Lloyd was doing was deep dives into bids that had been let, RFP’s and the process and procedures associated with this activity. Could that have led to individuals? We will never know because Mr. King ensured the resources being utilized for this discovery process were systematically removed. No one was ever accused of wrongdoing! The process was never finished. However, this points to the platforms that several of us ran on which was transparency and improvement in operations. What was the reason given for avoiding this research? You are interfering with operations. Really? So, asking for records that through a court order are legally available to all property owners, that is interfering with operations? Lloyd makes no apologies for doing exactly what he promised the property owners he was going to do. The real question is why wasn’t the GM participating in these types of activities? The Voice actually asked both of us if we had planted a mole inside the POA. They further asked Lloyd what he knew about “Operation Kickback”. Diana and Lloyd were interviewed separately and both deny a “mole” was ever planted in the POA. Lloyd indicated he knew nothing about “Operation Kickback” and was told that the document Mr. King was waving around had his name in the string. It wasn’t from Lloyd or to Lloyd and Lloyd doesn’t recall any such email or text and would have asked about it had he seen anything of this nature. Somebody’s imagination was running wild and it appears they pulled in several staff and Board believers. 

Lloyd Sherman at Texas PIcnic
Lloyd Sherman Works Hard at Texas PIcnic

Then on a legal front, who authorized the POA to access privileged emails or texts? How did an employee or a Board member get his hands on any documentation not meant for him? Was it leaked from the Board? I mean, after all, at least two individuals have on their records that they have done so in the past. Why didn’t the Board member(s) know this was going on? Why were they never approached and asked for their side of any conspiracy theory that had been conjured up? Again, people were getting close to exposing holes in our business model. Wasn’t that what the property owners wanted when they changed out the business-as-usual Boards? And so what if a board member or members was/were investigating potential wrongdoing or complaints from whistleblowers? Again, if not the board, then who?

This story could go on, but as we have reviewed Mr. King’s comments several times, we find ourselves confused as to who and why he resigned (quit) after he accused us of quitting. Who is at fault for his decision? The property owners for harassing and bullying him, or Lloyd and Diana because he wasn’t doing what he was hired to do? Don’t you find it a bit odd that two previous board chairs who were not convinced we had made the right hiring choice were the ones who resigned from the board after his arrival?

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