John's Open Letters Vol. 1 #4
September 19, 2001
The importance of this Open Letter is to continue to let you know what I have been told recently and to cover issues of concern to all.
I received a Memorandum from Mr. Charley Price of the State of Florida referring to the National K.W.V.A. Reunion on July 26, 2001, in Crystal City, Va. Mr. Price was introduced by Mr. "Chuck" Sterchele, Secretary/Treasurer, Florida Dept. of K.W.V.A. The Board of Directors and Officers were present in open session, including President Harley Coon.
Mr. Price expressed his opinion for the good of the organization that the National headquarters Treasurer does not have adequate or appropriate controls or systems to adequately account for and control the organization's funds. He further states there were no accurate means for accountability, audits, investment program(s), financial advisor(s), approved budget or appropriate justifications for expenditure of the organization's funds. Also, it is to be noted that the K.W.V.A. Treasurer, Thomas J. Gregory, is an appointed officer, appointed by Mr. Coon.
He further spoke at length about The Graybeards costing too much of the National budget. The amount of $120,000.00 per annum for 6 editions per year is unreasonable to him. He stated he believed the expenditure for this publication should not exceed more than 20% of the total budget. He feels The Graybeards is nothing more than a travelogue for Harley Coon. He states there should be an Editorial Board to determine the subject matter for the publication and not allow the "entire substance" of what may or may not be printed or appear in the organization's official publication to be up to one individual, Mr. Vince Krepps. He also feels Mr. Krepps is operating an illegal censoring bureau. He states Mr. Krepps e-mailed to him that he would never publish in The Graybeards anything that he (Mr. Price) said or wrote. Also it is noted that Mr. Krepps, Editor, is an appointee, appointed by Mr. Coon.
He spoke at length concerning the organization not having a National Charter. It was explained that the organization is currently a social club. He states, in his opinion, the K.W.V.A. will probably not get a National Charter as long as the request as now written is in effect. The K.W.V.A. request to the U.S. Congress should indicate the K.W.V.A. as a Veterans Support Organization with its primary mission to support the needs, goals, and aims of the Korean War Veterans, which are entitlements and benefits.
He feels, in his legal opinion, the pending lawsuits should not be taken as frivolous, and the matter should be taken seriously and appropriate legal counsel be obtained. His concern is any losses encumbered to the organization as the result of failure to perform in a fiduciary manner could result in additional damages and liabilities levied against the Officers of the K.W.V.A., and in turn, the members' assets. He also states Mr. Pratt is not a practicing attorney and cannot represent the organization. Mr. Pratt has totally misrepresented to the assembled group his ability to handle the organization's legal affairs.
Lastly, he asked the Officers and Board of Directors to please pay close attention to two resolutions that he initiated that were going to be presented by Mr. Ted Trousdale, Chair of the Resolutions Committee. The two resolutions were:
1) A dues sharing arrangement between the National and the State Departments, 2) That all persons named in the Tramonte Lawsuit should be required to "Step Aside" from their offices until the suit is resolved.
Not only was Mr. Trousdale not permitted to present the resolutions, Mr. Trousdale was in effect fired by Mr. Coon for bringing them up. An illegal and inappropriate display of usurpation of power by Mr. Coon.
Mr. Price states that at this Reunion and others, Mr. Coon acted without authority or appropriate power pursuant to the National Bylaws and Rules of Parliamentary Procedure and did deny or table, illegally and inappropriately, each and every resolution or recommendation he presented.
The Minutes as published in The Graybeard do not show that Mr. Price even attended the Reunion. Not one word was printed to permit the members and readers to learn that there are competent people who are truly concerned about the proper functioning of the K.W.V.A., but no thanks to Mr. Krepps censorship practices.
He further states Mr. Coon's behavior is outrageous and his practices are corrupt and lacking integrity. He believes Mr. Coon's practices have cheated the K.W.V.A. by his double-dealing and stacking of the deck in his own behalf with his appointment of his friends and followers to key offices and positions in order to carry out his own personal wishes and desires.
An example, the Board of Directors disapproved efforts to remove term limits. Mr. Coon, without authority, did present to the general membership, which was less than the "required quorum" necessary to effect changes, and did declare Passed said Motion in order that he can continue to run for the Office of National President.
The physical movement of the Headquarters from Washington to Ohio without authority or compliance with the New York State Cooperative Charter is wrong. There are known instances where Mr. Coon has directed the K.W.V.A. to contribute to unworthy causes which the Board of Directors disapproved, and therefore, I believe, this is a misuse by Mr. Coon of the organization's funds, honor, prestige and good will.
The above items are excerpts of letters freely given to me by Mr. Charles Price, Mr. "Chuck" Sterchele, and Mr. Tom Trousdale, Director, to be used in my open letter.
I personally reviewed the July/August 2001 Graybeards and found no mention of any resolution or recommendation presented by Mr. Price. Again the members who have an interest in the welfare of the K.W.V.A. are censored by Mr. Coon.
By reviewing the vote totals on the Motion to accept the Election Results, I read 57 Yes, 10 No and 2 Abstaining. This is a total of 69, not the 100 as Sgt.-of-Arms Jack Edwards and Jerry Lake confirmed as present. This meeting did not have a quorum so all business transacted at the time should be null and void.
My mail since I started writing these Open letters has grown tremendously and in almost every instance it has been stated that many of these meetings do not have a quorum to legally conduct the business of the K.W.V.A. I was told by our Legal Advisor that we've got to do business even though it is not properly represented. Also that Robert's Rules of Order are only a guideline and you can interpret and make any rule you want. The K.W.V.A. should be run by the existing Bylaws and not be used as one sees fit.
Years ago I had a boss (in private business) who looked at a complaint I had and said, "I can't send this on because this sound like you're not happy." He handed my letter back to me and I tore it up. Then I went to the phone and voiced my complaint to the Senior Vice President. He said he would look into it. Two days later I received a letter clearing up the matter to my satisfaction. We have a publication that is supposed to represent all of us but only a "select few" can have a say so in it. You be the judge.
Please acknowledge receiving this letter and your personal opinion would be greatly appreciated.
Freedom is not free, and it never was.
Respectfully, John Kronenberger