Monday, August 12, 2013

Well-connected Charity Leader Terminated Under Incredible Circumstances

By Gary Snyder

Another celebrated and well-connected nonprofit leader seems to be in big trouble. 

The executive director of the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty, one of the city's largest and most prestigious social-services nonprofits, was fired Monday as news of a criminal investigation into his tenure came to light.The investigation was confirmed by the offices of both Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli. The Met Council, which William Rapfogel has run since 1992, also confirmed his termination.

As of noon Monday, Mr. Rapfogel's presence had been scrubbed from the Met Council's website.

"This matter is the subject of an ongoing criminal investigation conducted in conjunction with the office of the comptroller as part of Operation Integrity," said a spokesman for Mr. Schneiderman in a statement, referring to the name the attorney general and comptroller have given their ongoing joint investigation of corruption in New York.

According to the Daily News, Mr. Rapfogel is accused of receiving kickbacks from insurance agents from whom he purchased policies using Met Council money. A source told NBC 4 that Mr. Rapfogel may have funneled the ill-gotten gains into the campaigns of several mayoral candidates. The former nonprofit head, who is known for his impeccable attire and many connections to elected officials, has not made personal donations to any 2013 mayoral campaigns.
Without addressing the nature of the investigation, Mr. Rapfogel apologized for his actions, in a statement provided by his attorney.
"After 21 years at the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty, I deeply regret the mistakes I have made that have led to my departure from the organization," he said. "I apologize to our dedicated officers and board, our incredible staff and those who depend on Met Council. I let them all down." (source)

Nonprofit Imperative gathers its information principally from public documents...some of which are directly quoted. Virtually all cited are in some phase of criminal proceedings; some have not been charged, however. Cites in various media: Featured in print, broadcast, and online media outlets, including: Charity Navigator, Vermont Public Radio, Miami Herald, National Public Radio (NPR), Huffington Post, The Sun News, Atlanta Journal Constitution, Wall Street Journal (Profile, News and Photos), “Betrayal”, (a movie), NBC (on Charity Fraud…TBD), FOX2, ABC Spotlight on the News, WWJ Radio, Marie Claire, Ethics World, Aspen Philanthropy Newsletter, Harvard Business Review, Current Affairs, Charity Navigator, The Chronicle of Philanthropy, St. Petersburg Times, Board Room Insider, USA Today Topics, Accountants News, Newsweek.com, Responsive Philanthropy Magazine, New York Times, Portfolio Magazine, The Virgin Islands Daily News, NANKAI (China) BUSINESS REVIEW, National Religious Broadcasters newsletter, The Charity Governance Blog, American Chronicle, Palm Beach Post, Detroit Free Press, Oakland Press, Nonprofit World, Socially Responsible Business Forum, PNNOnline, Ohio Nonprofit Resources, Nonprofit Good Practice Guide, Nonprofit Startup Guide, Nonprofit Blog, National Coalition of Homeless Newsletter, Finance and Administration Roundtable Newsletter, MichiganNonprofit.com, CORP! Magazine, Crain’s Michigan Nonprofit, ncrp.org, PhilanTopic, Nashville Free Press, Nonprofit Law Blog, Seniors World Chronicle, Carnegie Reporter, Assoc. of Certified Fraud Examiners Examiner, msnbc.com, Worchester (MA) Telegram and Gazette, Carnegie Corporation of America, EO Tax Journal, Wikipedia: Non-profit Organizations; Parent: Wise Austin, Accountants News, Veterans Today, Answers.com, Far-roundtable, #Nonprofit Report, nonprofithelpnews, nonprofit news; National Enquirer, Northwest Herald, The HelpWise Daily, The #Nonprofit Report, Wikipedia (Nonprofit Organization), Answers.com, Nonprofits: On the Brink (2006) Silence: The Impending Threat to the Charitable Sector (2011)
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