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Project Veritas Board Sends Desperate Email to Donors with Big Claim About James O'Keefe: Report

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The remaining members of the Project Veritas board of directors sent a desperate message to donors pleading for a chance to prove themselves in the wake of the ouster of founder and former boss James O’Keefe, according to a report.

The fallout from O’Keefe’s abrupt departure Monday is still swirling around the undercover journalism organization that has been responsible for uncovering a raft of left-wing corruption in governments and private corporations alike.

Early this month, news broke that O’Keefe was at odds with many members of his whistleblower group’s board, ostensibly over fundraising and expenditures but also because of his personal conduct.

On Feb. 8, it was reported that the Project Veritas founder had been placed on a temporary suspension with paid leave as the board considered its options over reports that some employees felt O’Keefe sponsored an abusive workplace along with questions over his spending of company funds.

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After days of back-and-forth accusations and multiple news reports about the unrest inside the organization, on Monday, O’Keefe said he was pushed out by the board and was no longer part of Project Veritas.

Since that time, the organization has been suffering rejection by many former supporters.

Essentially meaning “Project Truth,” Project Veritas has made a name for itself by revealing raw footage usually from hidden camera stings that have uncovered the nefarious plans of the extreme left in our society, but now it is embroiled in finger-pointing and “he said/she said” accusations among insiders.

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The irony is hard to ignore as the public struggles to discern just what happened between O’Keefe and the board amid ongoing accusations and counter-accusations.

But one thing seems certain: James O’Keefe is out. And with that in mind, Project Veritas’ financial supporters are screaming for their money back since many donated based on their trust in O’Keefe as the organization’s frontman. They say they feel as if they are victims of some sort of bait-and-switch.

The Post Millennial reported Wednesday that the remaining board members are sending emails to donors and supporters pleading to at least be given a shot to prove they can continue to fulfill the same goals the group had with O’Keefe in the lead.

In an email obtained by the website, the nonprofit said it was “still grinding” on the stories it had been working on for months despite the disruptions.

“We hope that you might continue to give us a chance,” the email said, according to the report. “We can’t stress how separate the board’s role is from daily operations here at PV. We are still grinding and pursuing stories of great public importance.”

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The board claimed that O’Keefe wasn’t ousted from Project Veritas but was only “temporarily suspended.”

“We understand and share your frustrations,” the email said. “We all love and respect James and hope he returns. This is difficult for everyone.”

The message said “an independent two-dimensional audit is being arranged” to determine whether O’Keefe mishandled company funds in his conduct of fundraisers.

The board said it also was looking into whether he was guilty of “Breaking the Bylaws of the organization by unilaterally dismissing the CFO and co-opting another board member’s vote by saying that board member supported the dismissal.”

The email said Barry Hinckley and Tom O’Hara were mistreated by O’Keefe, who fired them both — without proper authority, according to the board. It also said he had called employee Spencer Meads a vulgar name.

“The board included this in its statement what it is aware of so far which clearly warrants this internal audit to ensure your hard-earned, and graciously donated, money is utilized appropriately,” the email said.

The board also said there were concerns “with employment laws/workplaces safety regarding appropriate treatment of the employees” and its action against O’Keefe “was based, in part, on his interaction with senior staff in a Leadership call on January 31, 2023.”

Further, the email said a number of employees had threatened to quit unless O’Keefe’s behavior was addressed.

The board cited turnover at Project Veritas as evidence that something was amiss. It said 140 employees either quit or were fired by O’Keefe in the last seven years, with at least 20 being high-level managers who were part of the organization’s “succession plan” and whose loss threatened “the long-term viability of the company.”

Ultimately, though, the board said in its email that it did not fire O’Keefe but only handed him a “temporary suspension until the audit was completed.” The board said it had invited O’Keefe to engage in conversations to hash out their differences, but he has refused.

“We understand and share your frustrations,” the email said. “We all love and respect James and hope he returns. This is difficult for everyone.”

The email was sent by Bethany Rolando, one of 16 Project Veritas employees who signed a Feb. 6 letter demanding that the organization address O’Keefe’s alleged inappropriate behavior.

The board said the organization intended to keep pursuing its original charge and “we remain steadfast and determined to expose corruption.”

For his part, O’Keefe said he made the demand that the board members resign in the wake of the accusations, then noted that their refusal left him with no position at the organization he founded.

“So currently, I have no job at Project Veritas,” O’Keefe said in a video of his own. “I have no position here based upon what the board has done. So I’m announcing to you all that today on President’s Day, I’m packing up my personal belongings.”

O’Keefe founded the nonprofit group 13 years ago, and its 2022 Internal Revenue Service filings provided to charity regulators in Florida show it earned $20 million in revenue in 2021, according to The Associated Press.

Many believe that James O’Keefe is Project Veritas — a perception the board is attempting to disprove. Only time will tell if it will be successful.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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