Arts nonprofit and directors sue board majority

By Philip Gonzales | Mar 22, 2017

PRINCETON — A nonprofit corporation and several of its board members are suing other members comprising a majority of the board over alleged gross abuse of authority.

PRINCETON — A nonprofit corporation and several of its board members are suing other members comprising a majority of the board over alleged gross abuse of authority.

The Alliance for the Arts Ltd., with Directors Gary Denardo, Jenifer Fox, Sue Jackson and Carolyn Neale filed a complaint in Mercer Circuit Court against Marie Blackwell, Hal Gusler, Craig Hammond, Thomas Lester, Robbie Linkous, et al, alleging they became hostile to members of the Summit Players – a portion of the Alliance that regularly puts on theatrical productions. The Alliance formed in 1986 when two groups united to maintain and use the historic Old Bluefield City Hall for productions and events. 

According to the complaint, the plaintiffs allege that defendants' actions harmed Summit Players members of the Alliance and endangered the nonprofit's status because Summit Players allegedly produce most of its exempt activities. The plaintiffs hold the board majority responsible because the defendants allegedly expelled Summit Players representatives and refused to allow access to minutes, records and accounting and refused to answer all Summit Players representatives' letters.

The plaintiffs request a trial by jury and seek an order directing access to the corporate books, removal of the named defendants from office, an order for the election of new board members, award for costs of this action and such other and further relief. They are represented by John W. Feuchtenberger of Feuchtenberger & Barringer Legal Corp. in Princeton.

Mercer Circuit Court Case number 17-c-34

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