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Expo dismisses 3 managers after months of dissension

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Three managers at Indiana Black Expo were fired Wednesday, according to local television reports.

The departures of Chief Operating Officer Perry Hines, Director of Communications Elizabeth Hart and Human Resources Representative Veronica Kendrick comes after months of dissension within the staff of the Indianapolis-based not-for-profit organization.

Indiana Black Expo staged its annual Summer Celebration in Indianapolis in July, attracting nearly 242,000 people to its series of concerts, business seminars and other events.

On May, 17 Expo employees signed a letter to the Black Expo board claiming CEO Tanya Bell was creating a hostile work environment that left employees feeling "disrespected, disregarded and demeaned.” They also claim to have observed Bell “changing figures in various financial documents.”

That letter prompted the board to hire an outside consultant to improve employee relations, and the board said it would provide an update in August.

Telephone calls to Bell, board President John Thompson, board member Vernon Williams, as well as Hines, Hart and Kendrick were not returned.

However, the board released a statement to WRTV-TV Channel 6, backing Bell’s decision to dismiss the three managers.

"The Board of Directors of IBE fully supports the decisions of the President and CEO,” the statement read. “All personnel matters involving individual employees are confidential. Consequently, addressing any specific employment circumstance would be inappropriate.”

Bell took the helm of the Expo in early 2008, replacing Joyce Rogers who left for a position at Ivy Tech Community College. Bell, an attorney by training, had been assistant general counsel at Indianapolis-based hospital system Community Health Network.

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  1. How much you wanna bet, that 70% of the jobs created there (after construction) are minimum wage? And Harvey is correct, the vast majority of residents in this project will drive to their jobs, and to think otherwise, is like Harvey says, a pipe dream. Someone working at a restaurant or retail store will not be able to afford living there. What ever happened to people who wanted to build buildings, paying for it themselves? Not a fan of these tax deals.

  2. Uh, no GeorgeP. The project is supposed to bring on 1,000 jobs and those people along with the people that will be living in the new residential will be driving to their jobs. The walkable stuff is a pipe dream. Besides, walkable is defined as having all daily necessities within 1/2 mile. That's not the case here. Never will be.

  3. Brad is on to something there. The merger of the Formula E and IndyCar Series would give IndyCar access to International markets and Formula E access the Indianapolis 500, not to mention some other events in the USA. Maybe after 2016 but before the new Dallara is rolled out for 2018. This give IndyCar two more seasons to run the DW12 and Formula E to get charged up, pun intended. Then shock the racing world, pun intended, but making the 101st Indianapolis 500 a stellar, groundbreaking event: The first all-electric Indy 500, and use that platform to promote the future of the sport.

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