Background

In the summer of 2016, the Board of Directors of Gales Creek Camp Foundation discovered large-scale irregularities within the organization's financial operations. Then-Executive Director Cheryl Sheppard resigned immediately when this was brought to her attention. The matter has been turned over to law enforcement authorities, and the investigation is ongoing.

From Board President, Angie Evans:

August 6, 2016

Dear Families,

I wanted to give you all an update on what has been happening the last month within the Gales Creek Camp Foundation.

The board of the GCC Foundation recently found financial irregularities in its bank statements. Board members talked with the executive director, Cheryl Sheppard, about these irregularities, after which she resigned. The board has turned over the information it gathered to local police, who will determine next steps. 

GCC is financially stable and has well-prepared staff and volunteers, and so the Camp is continuing to operate just as before. Our 2016 camp program is underway, serving more than 500 children and teenagers this summer.

We know this is about more than just the facts. Gales Creek campers and their families form an emotional bond among themselves, the staff and the board that extends across the years. For this reason, we commit to keeping you informed about and involved with the search for a new executive director, which is already underway.

Please reach out to me or any GCC Board member with any questions you may have that aren't answered in the Q&A below,

Sincerely,

Angie

Q&A

Why exactly did the executive director, Cheryl Sheppard, resign?

She chose to resign when the board showed her financial irregularities flagged by U.S. Bank. A significant amount of money was unaccounted for.

Will the camp continue to operate?

Yes, the camp will continue to operate as before, helping children and teens with diabetes learn to live active and satisfying lives. We’re having a very successful series of summer camps in 2016. Our priority as an organization is and always has been the campers and their families. 

Who is in charge of Gales Creek Camp?

The executive committee of the board is taking a more active role during this period of time. Jo Vance will continue handling the day-to-day operations as our camp director. The board has already started the search process for a new executive director. 

How did the Board discover the apparent financial fraud?

The board received a call from U.S. Bank, making them aware of a financial situation that seemed irregular. The board immediately investigated and raised the matter with the executive director, who then resigned.

Why did the board take so long to notify the media (parents, staff, etc.)?

This is a serious matter. The board has diligently worked since early July to ascertain the facts, so as to make good decisions. In addition, our paramount concern was keeping our focus on the summer camp activities, our principal mission.

How is the Gales Creek Camp Foundation Board planning to prevent future situations like this?

The board is reviewing its policies to make sure they reflect best practices and standards. 

What is the financial situation for the camp?

We are certain that more than $100,000 is missing, and think it likely that more may be missing. At this time, we are confident that our insurance policy will restore most if not all of the missing funds. We are financially stable with sufficient working capital.  

Why did you involve the police?

The board has a fiduciary responsibility to the close community of Gales Creek Camp and the community-at-large (as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, it is exempt from certain taxes). This is a serious matter and alerting law enforcement was the right thing to do.

Do you know the status of the police investigation? Do you know why Cheryl Sheppard might do such a thing? 

While we will share factual information that we receive, we will also respect the investigation process and the rights and privacy of Cheryl Sheppard.  

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