Nonprofits Not Immune


Think the media's nose for scandal is only sensitive to corporate wrongdoing? Think again. The Red Cross took a hit in the wake of Sept. 11, and now the Washington, DC-area United Way is taking a battering, as well. Norman Taylor, the chief executive of the organization, is now being accused by another high-ranking exec of knowing about improper uses of expense accounts, inflated donation numbers and other abuses of the finances, although Taylor denies knowledge of wrongdoing. The bright side: Corporate execs seem to be grasping the importance of creating trust among stakeholders, and some top execs and corporate board members even attended a business ethics "boot camp" dubbed "The Directors' Consortium" recently. The three-day course, created by the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, Stanford Law School and the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business, included lectures on accounting, legal liabilities and even how to save face in front of a congressional investigative committee. Subject matter included what message hiring a criminal attorney will send to audiences and how telling the truth is always the best practice.

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