Big news today.  A federal grand jury has indicted four people on fraud and conspiracy charges in the CIETC scandal and the former CIETC Chief Operating Officer, John Bargman, apparently pleaded guilty to charges in exchange for testimony in the case.

The four indicted include:

  • Former Des Moines City Councilman and CIETC Board President, Archie Brooks
  • Former CIETC CEO Ramona Cunningham
  • CIETC’s former accountant, Karen Tesdell
  • Former Deputy Director of the Iowa Workforce Development, Jane Barto

The indictments come 10 months after the scandal at the job training agency broke.  The income received by CIETC management is staggering and according to one of my criminal defense buddies it is no surprise federal authorities filed charges.  This has been brewing for months.

If you are a volunteer board member of a state or other agency you better make sure you pay attention and provide appropriate oversight.  Volunteer board members can no longer serve only as a rubber stamp.  Will indictments like this have a chilling effect on the willingness of people to volunteer for these boards?