Last login: Saturday, May 24, 2014
Well everyone needs to take a step back and look at this from a purely audit standpoint. First, Mr. Campbell had been there for 31 years which gave him so much control that no one ever questioned his decisions including the Board of Directors. Not to mention his exorbitant salary and benefits package for a relatively small opera company. Perhaps, KPBS should compare his salary and benefits to other opera companies of the same size around the world? And to keep his ex wife on the payroll with her salary and benefits indicates a definite "conflict of interests" and nepotism at the least.
Now why is the AG's office looking into him we can only suppose for multiple reasons? First, having been there 31 years no one would ever question his authority. We have all heard of his lavish trips and First Class plane tickets and luxury hotels around the world, but I suppose that is typical of the opera world in general. Suppose all of that can be justified for his obtaining world class talent for the SD Opera. BUT NO ONE QUESTIONED HIS AUTHORITY AND EXPENSES!.
So now a full scale financial and operational audit is needed to have full disclosure. Did he really enhance financial statements to make the opera company's books look more robust to receive further donations? And who is looking into his lavish expenditures including multiple plastic surgeries supposedly paid for by the SD Opera's insurance for the last 5 years? An independent auditor needs to be retained for full disclosure as apparently no controls were in place to prevent the debacle of this honored SD institution. (I recently heard he owned a condo in Gstaad...hmmmmm?)
Instead of all of the conjectures and hiding behind employment contracts, the SD Opera needs a full independent audit of all of Mr. Campbell's affairs for the last five years and expand the scope of years if necessary. Only then can the SD Opera move on and put this cloud of dark scrutiny behind them. And with Mr. Campbell wanting to disband the Opera in SD on the spur of the moment, perhaps, he thought all of his problems would never come to light and go away. Full disclosure Mr. Campbell!
The San Diego Opera is a wonderful local institution with amazing performers and productions including the SD Orchestra. Why would we as a world class city want this to go away because of on going executive mis-management and lack of Board oversight? Let's keep the opera alive in San Diego and audit the "hell" out of Mr. Campbell, his wife and his administration including the blind Board members who resigned in protest. Cronyism comes in many forms.
Lets all take a step back and take an objective approach to this mess!
May 24, 2014 at 7:13 p.m.
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