The Indispensable NRA in Danger Blog shared the thoughts from a law professor specializing in credit and bankruptcy “tees up the question of “what the hell were they thinking?” The NRA’s bankruptcy strategy—and implementation—always seemed remarkably hare-brained.” The only winner here is the Brewer firm, since they got paid.
“So why did you file? We can only guess that the lawyers saw the prospect of a wealthy client who wasn’t adverse to paying big fees, and thought of nothing else. Not even the most core ideas: 1. What do we want from the court? 2. is that something the court can legally give us?”
In my 40 years in business, I’ve been involved in multiple legal disputes. There is critical mindset to legal matters. THE LAWYERS WORK FOR YOU, not the other way around. The secondary mindset is risk-reward considerations, or as a former CEO liked to say “is the juice worth the squeeze.” Both of these key mindsets appear absent from the EVP and the Officers of the Board - and the remainder of the board is not asking the tough questions that are their fiduciary obligation.
There was no evidence presented at the trial that showed any amount of reasonable due diligence on the Bankruptcy strategy or any challenges to what seems to be a legal counsel driven strategy with the Gang of 4 (LaPierre, Meadows, Cotton and Lee) going along for the ride. As La Pierre was quoted as saying “only Brewer is going to keep me out of Jail.” The Officers of the NRA (Meadows, Cotton and Lee) and the rubber stamp Board apparently think that keeping LaPierre out of jail is more important than being proper stewards of the assets of the members of the NRA.
The Bankruptcy cost NRA members over $10,000,000 in legal fees. And the costs may not be over - as noted in the Credit Slips post “I'm curious to see if the dismissal is followed with a sanctions motion (against either the NRA or its counsel) by creditors' counsel seeking recovery of their litigation costs. Given the "bad faith" finding, I would think there's good grounds for such a motion.”
The Board has already authorized the Gang of 4 to refile for Bankruptcy. Judge Hale clearly signaled that “should the NRA file a new Bankruptcy case, this Court would immediately take up some of its concerns about disclosure, transparency, secrecy, conflicts of interest of officers and litigation counsel [Brewer}, and the unusual involvement of litigation counsel in the affairs of the NRA, which could cause the appointment of a trustee out of a concern that the NRA could not fulfill the fiduciary duty required by the Bankruptcy Code for a debtor in possession.” That is a shot across the bow of the NRA. We’ll see if the Gang of 4 authorizes more millions to refile Bankruptcy. Judge Hale appointing a Trustee would be a welcome development.
I’ve been a vocal critic of NRA EVP Wayne Lapierre for his leadership style, and the Board leadership in not properly exercising their fiduciary responsibilities by submitting petitions calling for EVP Lapierre’s resignation as well as the resignation of the Board Officers and members of the executive, audit and finance committees at the 2019 and 2020 NRA Annual meetings. If they have not been removed by the 2021 meeting in Houston, I will do so again.
The 2021 Board election is where the members can have a say and change the culture of the NRA Board and get long overdue new leadership. The only director up for re-election that deserves support is Owen “Buz” Mills as he is publicly supporting Judge Journey’s efforts to reform the NRA. The remaining board candidates deserve no vote.
I ask that you please write me in on the ballot for the 2021 board of directors election when you get you ballot in the next couple of weeks. It will be out in the June/July issue of your NRA magazine.
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Please note that Col. Brown is not running as a write in for this election. He will run as a petition candidate for the 2022 election.
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