“It was one of those things,” Ukrop said. “We looked around the table [and considered] who had the skill set and would be willing to do it, and Bob stepped up.”
Thank Jesus Sarbanes-Oxley doesn’t apply to nonprofits. Anyway, I can’t think of a better candidate than Bob Mooney to lead what remains of the Virginia Performing Arts Foundation (don’t worry, the website will reflect these new changes sometime in 2007).
Bob Mooney is a wealthy businessman who has the right–and I do mean right–social connections to kick-start fund-raising (just don’t anyone use the words “Broadway version of Brokeback Mountain” anywhere near him), but his most relevant skills for running VAPAF probably come from his association with a company whose accounting skills put Brad Armstrong’s to shame.
In 2001, Mooney’s energy trading company, Envera, partnered with Enron; not long afterward the Texas conglomerate was part of a consortium that bought Envera for $30 million or so. Envera then merged with ChemConnect, a former Enron competitor in commodities trading. It’s all a bit Globochem to me, but my formal training is not in this field.
I’m better at finding press releases, like this one:
“We welcome Enron as a member of Envera,” stated Bob Mooney, Envera’s CEO. “As our newest member, Enron extends Envera’s value proposition by opening up to Enron’s trading verticals, including new industries such as oil and gas, petrochemicals and plastics to Envera’s trading members. Furthermore, our members have enhanced access to Enron’s many services, continuing Envera’s “Business for Business.”
Or this one:
Enron offers guaranteed liquidity, says Alan C. Engberg, director for Enron Global Markets. “There’s always going to be a two-way market–the ability to buy or sell–at our location.” The crux of market making is not just posting buy and sell bids, Friedman adds, but posting “reasonable two-way indications,” so that customers actually want to make deals. Just recently, Enron took an equity interest in the chemical-company-backed network Envera. Enron will link its trading system to Envera, which will become the preferred network for members settling petrochemical transactions with Enron.
What better background to lead an organization that, amazingly, still claims to have raised $72 million but whose plans were somehow scuppered by the mayor of Richmond witholding $4.4 million of that “revenue raised to date”?
Here’s hoping Mooney, whom we–seriously–applaud for working for free (not that there’s anything left to pay him with, though maybe he can use Brad’s sunroom from time to time) is not the fool-me-twice type. If VAPAF’s vaunted “cease-fire” with Mayor Wilder is to work, someone at the foundation has to put a stop to the crap accounting and level with both the taxpayers and the foundation’s donors about the group’s real condition.
VAPAF’s an Augean stables all right, and Mooney may well be the man to clean it up. After all, he’s seen this kind of mess before.