Posted on November 19, 2012 at 6:05 PM
Monday, Nov 19 at 6:22 PM
SAN ANTONIO – With a record of providing job training to nearly 60,000 people, the Bexar County Opportunities Industrialization Center has its eyes on reconverting an old east-side supermarket into a “supermarket” of vocational training.
“We hope this will become a cornerstone for development on the east-side community,” said Willie J. Clark, the executive director of the Bexar County OIC.
At the groundbreaking, county officials picked up shovels, alongside the financial backer in all this—TriHM Foundation.
The foundation presented a $70 million check to help the east-side agency with its renovation, and to reach more adults and young men and women with its training programs.
Clark added, “With this, we can serve anyone who is in need.”
“They asked for 100 million, but we gave them 70,” said Jackqueline Cooper, TriHM’s founder.
God is good, said Cooper, and she weaves scriptural teachings into the context of the work the foundation does across Texas. Although she said her foundation is “for-profit,” the money comes from philanthropists across the world, eager to do good.
“It seems too good to be true. It’s not. In the Bible, God says he’ll take the foolish things to confound the wise. And so, I totally trust in him,” said Cooper.
But former employees of the foundation say they don’t trust her. And if it’s money you want-- get in line.
“If you can’t even compensate your employees who are coming to work diligently every day… then, how do you think she’s able to pay these millions of dollars to all these different organizations? It’s not possible,” said one employee who didn’t want to be identified.
She was meeting another employee at an attorney’s office to discuss the bad checks they said were written to them as TriHM employees.
The checks have dollar amounts listed in the thousands, and come from Cooper’s personal checking account—not the TriHM Foundation.
In two years, the former employees claim, no one has ever been paid, including the more than two dozen agencies across Texas that have had similar groundbreakings... and been promised similar high-dollar grants.
“How much has it (the foundation) promised?” asked the reporter.
“Up in the billions. One project right now in Dallas, a hospital that is to be built; they were to be awarded $1 billion,” said one employee.
Other employees tell KENS-5 they have contacted the Texas Attorney General's Office, the FBI, and local police to investigate.
Meantime, Bexar County OIC continues to bank on the money rolling in. They believe they’ll have their new center renovated, open and some 77,000 square feet of building space ready for job training by July 2013.