Magazine article Strategic Finance

An Incredible Man

Magazine article Strategic Finance

An Incredible Man

Article excerpt

I recently saw the story on whistle-blower James Alderson in the August issue.

I am very familiar with Jim. When his story broke open concerning the fines, etc., he was living in Vancouver, Wash., which is across the river from where I am.

I am the founding president of the Oregon Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. One of the functions I helped start was an annual awards dinner for people who have made noteworthy contributions in fighting fraud in three major groupings--public, private sector, and government. We gave Jim the award for his work in the private sector group at the June dinner a couple of years ago.

He was very honored to receive it because he had pretty much been shunned by his professional peers. To again be recognized by a group like ours meant a lot to him. The winners give a brief acceptance speech, but the real value was in [talking] with him and his wife afterwards. About 12 of us sat around for a couple of hours, stuck to our chairs and almost in dead silence as we heard the ordeal he and his family had gone through and were still going through.

No one can imagine the pain they suffered. Sure, the outcome now looks good--but what risk and stamina to see it through. One has to realize that you have no friends when you do what he did. I immediately asked if he would be our dinner speaker for the joint OACFE and IMA October dinner meeting. He gracefully accepted.

I am a member of both groups, and I approached the local IMA chapter to hold a joint meeting with fraud as the predinner and dinner topic. …

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