Nov 142014
 November 14, 2014  Add comments

Former member of audit committee may not have been qualified for the job.

By Arin Mikailian,

November 14, 2014 | 7:08 p.m.

A former member of Glendale’s audit committee who resigned in late September stated qualifications on his resume he did not have, an issue brought to the City Council’s attention earlier this month.

David Gevorkyan — nominated by Councilwoman Laura Friedman — began his service on the unpaid, volunteer board in June 2013.

On Nov. 4, local blogger Ara Manoogian told the council that Gevorkyan falsely identified himself as a Certified Treasury Professional and misstated his undergraduate major.

“I’m not sure what the vetting process is, but clearly these are very relevant pieces of information [that] were somehow overlooked when Mr. Gevorkyan was appointed,” Manoogian said.

In a phone interview with the News-Press, Gevorkyan said he stepped down from the audit committee because of his father’s illness, not because of accusations regarding his background.

On his application, Gevorkyan wrote: “I have experience with budget administration, I am a certified treasurer…” In addition, a resume attached to the application lists Certified Treasury Professional under an “Education & Credentials” heading.

In the interview, Gevorkyan insisted he never claimed the credential, but did complete treasury management courses under the CTP curriculum’s umbrella that earned him a certificate.

A representative with the Assn. of Financial Professionals, which administers the certified treasury professional exam, said Gevorkyan was not certified and could not confirm whether Gevorkyan had completed the treasury management program.

Though his application stated that he received a bachelor’s degree in public administration from Cal State Northridge, Gevorkyan said his degree is actually in political science with an emphasis in public administration. An employee in the political science department recalled Gevorkyan as a student, but said university policy prohibited him from talking about whether he graduated.

In a phone interview, Friedman said she was unaware of any concerns regarding Gevorkyan’s background at the time of his appointment.

The audit committee reviews financial information and reports and provides recommendations to the City Council and qualifications require a nominee to have “relevant experience serving as a corporate officer, auditor, attorney or professional consultant to business, government or organizations.”

On his resume, Gevorkyan listed experience in budget analyses and preparing financial status reports while working for the city of Pasadena, responsibilities confirmed by that city’s treasurer, Vic Erganian.

During the Nov. 4 meeting, Friedman suggested a nominee’s professional background should be checked out.

“For some of the commissions that have strict rules, for instance on the Design Review Board, there has to be an architect, we should probably check to be sure whoever is fulfilling that qualification set forth in the ordinance, that they actually are a licensed architect, that they really do live in Glendale, all of those things we need to check,” she said.

But Ochoa said city officials only check whether a nominee is a resident of Glendale.

“We rely on the honor code and that’s served us well throughout the whole commission committee process,” he said in a phone interview.