How to Prevent Fraud at Your Association
First step: Implement a whistleblower protection policy
No association wants to believe employees might steal from them, but it happens. The American Horse Council learned this the hard way, when an employee secretly siphoned almost $650,000 from the group. AHC President Julie Broadway spoke of the incident at ASAE’s Associations @ Work conference earlier this week.
“I believe in paying it forward, and I would like you all to learn from the experience we had and hopefully avoid it,” Broadway said during the “Frauditing: Preventing and Detecting Fraud in Your Organization” session. “We came out much more resilient and stronger on the other end.”
Broadway came on board as president in 2016, inheriting the post from a person who’d been there decades. She kept the staff, and trusted the embezzling employee. AHC was completely in the dark about the embezzlement until a large check bounced in June 2018. When the bank manager told Broadway that AHC had insufficient funds to cover the check, she accused him of making a clerical error and went and got her bank statements.
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