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Entire IPHCA executive committee resigns, lawyer let go after racism controversy

Friday, Jul 20, 2018

* I told you earlier this week that the CEO of the Illinois Primary Health Care Association had resigned under a cloud after being accused of making racist remarks to the leader of a health care and social service agency.

The IPHCA’s chairman and legal counsel pushed back hard against Aunt Martha’s CEO Raul Garza for making the accusations against the CEO. Those two men have now resigned, along with the entire executive committee. From the new acting CEO of the Illinois Primary Health Care Association Jordan Powell…

Dear IPHCA Members,

Thank you for the frank dialogue on the challenging issues currently facing IPHCA. I have had numerous conversations over the past few days which have only solidified my commitment to leading our organization through and beyond where we are today. It is clear that to most effectively serve our members, changes must be made.

I have spoken with the Executive Committee and its members have acknowledged the need for new leadership. They have decided to resign their positions as Executive Committee members effective immediately. We will call an Assembly of Delegates meeting as soon as possible and follow the protocols outlined in our by-laws to elect a new Executive Committee which will then be seated immediately. The by-laws are attached for your review.

I assure you that we will prioritize this process. And I ask that you remain patient as we transition to a new Executive Committee in an expeditious and orderly manner.

We expect to select a meeting date, time and location by Monday, July 23 with the objective of meeting no later than Friday, August 3. We hope that this advance notice will allow all interested members plenty of time to plan their attendance.

Additionally, I have asked IPHCA counsel Bob Birndorf to step aside and will conduct a search to identify his successor. In the interim, I have reached out to Hinshaw & Culbertson’s Springfield office to serve as interim legal counsel for the Association. I have worked with Hinshaw’s lawyers in my prior employment and have valued their counsel. Hinshaw will assist our association through this transition.

As indicated in my July 17 email, I plan to meet personally with each of our member organizations over the coming weeks. I want to hear from you. That feedback will be incorporated into my planning and vision for the future.

I remain confident in our staff and anticipate no changes at this time. We will require additional workplace training for all staff members and will also solicit human resources expertise to review all relevant policies and procedures.

Let me reiterate my unequivocal commitment to guiding our organization forward and to working with each of you so you may thrive and continue to passionately serve the 1.4 million Illinois residents who rely on your care.


By all accounts, Jordan is a really good guy. He also happens to be African-American, which will give that organization a much-need perspective change right now.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Precinct Captain - Friday, Jul 20, 18 @ 10:30 am:

    You have to wonder how the attitudes of executive leadership of IPHCA impeded its mission before this incident became public.

  2. - wordslinger - Friday, Jul 20, 18 @ 10:36 am:

    A stiff broom is certainly in order if IPHCA is to retain any sort of credibility.

    We’ll see.

    I thought Johnson’s racist remarks were the half of it. His other comments, reported here, were a clear shakedown attempt; he implied he was going to use his position to hurt Aunt Martha’s unless he got a taste.

    Like Tony Soprano dropping the n-bomb when demanding protection money from a business, the racism, while appalling, was secondary and gratuitous to the main objective.

    Not for nothing, but if you do a google search, you’ll find that this story has not been reported anywhere else but Cap Fax.

    Good on you, Miller.

  3. - SaulGoodman - Friday, Jul 20, 18 @ 11:53 am:

    Jordan is definitely very good people. He will do for IPHCA.

  4. - soxfan4 - Friday, Jul 20, 18 @ 12:12 pm:

    In order to truly ensure a fresh start, the Executive Committee members should resign from their positions as Board Members, not just their positions as Executive Committee members. They should not have a say in who the new leadership will be.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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