Your recent two-part series on the donor community’s concerns over financial issues at the Olympic Medical Center Foundation (Sequim Gazette, Jan. 8, Jan. 15) was an important revelation for everyone who works in the non-profit sector. It exposes both the best and perhaps the worst of those who give and those who manage our local generosity.
Sara Maloney deserves an abundance of gratitude from all of us – not only for her forthright expression of concerns relating to the financial integrity of OMC Foundation management, but also for her heads-up to those who work in and around the non-profit sector. We have an exceptional responsibility to our donors and a commitment to those we claim to serve. Sara’s work across this county represents the very best in fundraising skill, creative talent and just plain hard work. The patients of OMC and the children of our community owe her a huge debt.
Exposure of problems is a positive. Perhaps the Foundation will find a way to renew its credibility in the donor community. However, I am concerned that the Foundation leadership will be reluctant to show the institutional transparency that the public deserves and its donors demand. Our community has seen much too much of bad management and questionable articulation of institutional goals and objectives. I am reminded of Harbor Works and the Incubator Project, where millions of dollars in public money were spent to no meaningful public benefit. Here we have a case of charitable funds being spent with no apparent accountability to the donors or the hospital.
Someone needs to take the lead here. We need to understand what is happening to donated money. We need to respect Sara Maloney’s considerable sacrifice and move on to higher standards and ethics. The local nonprofit community deserves that. The public must have confidence in those who allocate and spend our money. Without that, there is chaos.