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Removal of HSV CEO is difficult

Let’s Talk 8/24/19

The reasons why the Board of Directors, previously chaired by Tom Weiss, made removal of HSV CEO difficult were brought to light in a recent meeting.

Hot Springs Village Property Owners’ Association Board of Directors had a Let’s Talk at the DeSoto Clubhouse on Saturday, August 24, 2019.  The Directors sitting on the panel were Dick Garrison, Nancy Luehring, and Tormey Campagna.  The meeting began at 9:00 am and ended at approximately 11:01.

Police Presence at HSVPOA meetings

Even though HSVPOA Board and management are continually assuring us they want transparency and want to build trust with the property owners, it didn’t appear so at this Let’s Talk. As often happens anymore, the meeting was graced with a police presence.  The CEO’s contract was being discussed and a seemingly frustrated Nancy Luehring ordered the cameras to be shut off when she appeared to become uncomfortable with the questions.  This is what happened:

Steve Bylow inquired, “My question is, I’ve heard that there had been a change, that it took six of seven Board members to make a decision regarding the CEO.  All I want to do is understand.  One, is that true?  And second, what was the logic behind that?  What was the business logic as a Board?”

Luehring & Campagna stated reasons for this BOD decision

Tormey Campagna responded, “It does take six of the seven Board members to make a decision around the CEO.  That’s only in one area and that’s if you wanted to remove the CEO.  Other than what is specified in her contract”.  Campagna further stated, “Whether you would do anything else for the contract as it comes for renewal, only takes a majority of the Board members to make that decision.  That change that you talked I believe it was implemented in the last contract.  The six of seven.”

Nancy Luehring admitted, “That was during when I was there. Not them.”

In further explanation, Campagna said that as he understood it, the reasoning behind this decision was to “let her have a two-year window so we can really see if the work she is doing is making progress.  I believe that was part of the logic.  At least that is what I was told by the Board chair.”

Luehring said that may have been only part of the logic.  “The rest of the logic was is that we felt it should be difficult to remove the CEO.”

The audience asked, “WHY?

Melinda Noble said that getting a simple majority was already difficult.

Giving more detail, Luehring said, “I’m not going to argue with you or defend her contract.  I’m not.  I was there.  I was part of it.  That’s the reasoning.  But I’m not going to argue with you.  We all agreed, in whole on the contract.  There were individual parts of it that we did not agree completely on.  But as far as the contract on renewing and extending it, yes, we all agreed on that.  That’s it.  I’m not saying any more.”

Luehring feels CEO is doing a good job

Director Dick Garrison at HSV POA Let's Talk on August 24, 2019
Director Garrison at HSV POA Let’s Talk on August 24, 2019

Luehring stated she felt the CEO was doing a good job.  “People have to know every single thing that she does and possibly now, there is that opportunity. She runs a big corporation.  This is over 500 employees, 26,000 acres.  You’ve heard it all before.  This is a big operation.  We started with 76 divisions and five departments.  It’s a big operation.  It’s not Exxon.  It’s not Motorola, but it is a big operation.  It is not like anyplace else.”

Mary Szczepaniak asked if the operation were as big as the state of Arkansas or Texas.

Luehring answered, “It’s as big as Rhode Island.”

Szczepaniak said that wasn’t what she asked.

Luehring stated, “I don’t believe so.”

Szczepaniak explained that the governors of both states mentioned do not make anywhere near as close to what the CEO makes.

Cameras were shut off

Luehring threatened to leave the room and said to the cameraman, Larry Wilson, “Larry, cut the cameras.”

Wilson complied with Luehring’s request.

Written by Cheryl Dowden

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