Monday, May 16, 2016

Arts Charity Folds Under $750,000 Embezzlement

by Gary Snyder

Healing Arts Initiative—a Queens-based charity that provided performances and workshops for over 300,000 poor, disabled, and elderly New Yorkers—shut its doors after it failed to regain its footing from the discovery of a $750,000 embezzlement.


Shortly after being hired last summer, the director, D. Alexandra Dyer, was disfigured in an attack that led to three arrests and the exposure of what prosecutors said was a $750,000 embezzlement scheme.


In April, Ms. Dyer sued the board on behalf of the charity itself, claiming that the board’s negligence had enabled the thefts. Last week, the board fired Ms. Dyer and her chief financial officer, Frank Williams.


The board said through a spokesman, Timothy Gilles, that expenses for program, payroll and administration had exceeded revenue for many months but that the board did not know the extent of the problem until this week because Ms. Dyer and Mr. Williams had withheld “crucial financial information.”


Ms. Dyer and Mr. Williams said that they supplied all possible information and that the board ignored complaints about malfeasance for years. 
(NYT)


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