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March 17, 2011

Paramount School of Excellence

The idea:  To create a K-8 charter school with robots, wind turbines, Apple technology and a Common Core spiraling curriculum.

The gem:  The school was launched with everything I built it for!

The lemon:  Someone I entrusted expressed to the board that I defrauded the school out of funds.  The allegation came about whilst I was conveniently out of the country for almost 2 weeks.  When I arrived back in the US, I was on the news, and was told never to step foot back on school property.  I never had the opportunity to defend myself nor was an unbiased investigation rendered.

The result:  Of course, it was established (via arbitration) that no such “fraud” occurred and I further left the proceedings net positive.   Even though proof was evident, I was removed from management of the school and essentially “erased” as co-founder.  It’s now rolling up on 2015 and this is one still troubles me: falsely accused, no opportunity to defend myself and a falsely tarnished reputation.  It’s all good – no one can ever take from me the fact that I built something amazing for the babies!

Lesson learned:  Invest in a legal team that will establish a corporate structure to protect founding interests, deeply research the team you build with and create a solid culture.  Be clear on revenue allocations, capital expenditures and always use the best fiduciary management practices.

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