Just before Christmas, WW reported
that 1000 Friends of Oregon
is dealing with the alleged theft of a substantial sum of money.
Multiple sources familiar with the case have identified the suspect at the 35-year-old land use group as its former development director, Lori A. Meadows.
As 1000 Friends' development director, Meadows was responsible for raising money for the non-profit, which in its most recent filings had an annual budget of $1.2 million and separately, an endowment of about $2 million.
The police report detailing the alleged theft is not yet a public record because the criminal investigation is still pending. But one alarming aspect of the case is public.
Before joining 1000 Friends in fall 2005, court records show Meadows, 52, pleaded guilty to felony theft charges on two separate occasions.
In 1995, Meadows pleaded guilty to theft in the first degree, was sentenced to 18 months probation and ordered, according to Multnomah County court records "not to control funds or access funds of mentally/physically challenged people."
In 2002, Meadows again pleaded guilty to theft in the first degree, this time in Washington County. She was ordered to pay restitution of $5,220 to the West Union Community Club and again placed on probation.
It is unclear whether then-1000 Friends executive director Bob Stacey
knew about Meadows' prior convictions when he hired her in 2005. Citing an ongoing criminal investigation, Stacey declined to comment for this story. Stacey's successor, current 1000 Friends Executive Director Jason Miner, also declined comment.
Meadows could not be reached for comment.