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Tipster’s Uncontroverted Documentary Evidence Reveals New Manufactured Housing Institute CEO Lesli Gooch Controversial Quagmire

TipsterDocumentaryEvidenceRevealsNewManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoCEOLesliGoochPhotoControversialQuagmireMHProNews

The digital ink has barely dried on the Manufactured Housing Institute’s announcement of their launch of so-called “MHI 2.0.” Meanwhile, the Arlington, VA based trade group has been quickly thrust into a quagmire of controveries related to documents provided via an annoymous news tip.

The documents shown below reflect insider knowledge. They led MHProNews to additional discoveries, that will be outlined herein.

The essence of the evidence is this. While working full-time for MHI, then Executive Vice President (EVP) Lesli Gooch was working for outside interests in the housing field in an apparent conflict of interest (COI). That raises numerous questions relative to:

  • the effectiveness and transparency of MHI,
  • who in MHI leadership at the executive committee level knew what and when,
  • and why these practices weren’t repeatedly disclosed as these activities have been ongoing for years.

All that and more will  follow the evidence, insights, analysis and commentary.

In no specific order of importance, the documents reveal tens of thousands of dollars in payments for this lobbying work by Lesli Gooch, Ph.D., all while she has been working ‘full time’ for MHI.

ScreenCaptureLobbyingReportLesliMcColumGoochPhD-MHIevp-BuildingIndustryAssocSoCalCapitolPolicyAdvisorsManufacturedHomeProNews
You can download this image and then open it full size. As the bottom left reflects, this was ‘digitally signed’ by Lesli McCollum Gooch in 2015, after she was already working for the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI). It shows lobbying on behalf of Building Industry Association of Southern California. This on its face appears to be a conflict of interest. MHI’s executive committee, Lesli Gooch, Capitol Policy Advisors and the Building Industry Association of SoCal and MHI’s outside counsel all declined comment, but the message was confirmed as received by MHI and MHI’s outside counsel. 

Why has this apparent conflicts of interest not been repeatedly disclosed to MHI members?  The documents reveal that the relationship between Gooch, Capitol Policy Advisors and these other organizations in the documents shown have been ongoing for several years.

DeceptiveTradePracticesConflictofInterestLesliGoochManufacturedHousingInstituteEVP-NowMHICEOManufacturedHomeProNews
You can download this image and then open it full size. As the bottom left reflects, this was ‘digitally signed’ by Lesli McCollum Gooch in 2019, years after she was working for the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI). Indeed, some of this outside lobbying work may have occurred after it was announced that she was going to be MHI’s new CEO-elect. The document reflects lobbying on behalf of Building Industry Association of Southern California. That would also be an apparent conflict of interest in lobbying for MHI. Note that other years are involved, there was no need for us to show years of the same form for the same organization. That said, the tipster was correct in sending MHProNews all of those intervening years, as it reflects the ongoing activities.

If more than one on the MHI staff were aware of this, how could the MHI executive committee not be aware?

HUD-USHouseRepresentativesLesliGoochLobbyingforBuildersWhileManufacturedHousingInstituteEVP-NowCEOManufacturedHomeProNews
As the center left reflects, this was ‘digitally signed’ by Lesli McCollum Gooch, while she was working for the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI). Indeed, some of this work may have occurred after it was announced that she was going to be MHI’s new CEO-elect. It also reflects lobbying on behalf of Building Industry Association of Southern California. That would also be an apparent ‘prima facie’ conflict of interest in lobbying for MHI. Note that other years are involved, there was no need to show years of the same form for the same organization. That said, the tipster was correct in sending all of those intervening years, as it reflects the ongoing activities. You can download this image and then open it full size.

If MHI’s executive committee was aware, why would they tolerate lobbying for outside interests that arguably conflict with the interests of manufactured housing?

NationalCommunityRenaissanceCapitolPolicyAdvisorsLesliMcCollumGoochLobbyingWhileManufacturedHousingInstituteEVP-NowMHI-CEO-ManufacturedHomeProNews
This document is for lobbying on behalf of National Community Renaissance. As the bottom left reflects, this was ‘digitally signed’ by Lesli McCollum Gooch in 2019, years after she was working for the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI). Indeed, some of this outside lobbying work may have occurred after it was announced that she was going to be MHI’s new CEO-elect. Once more, this is an apparent “prima facie” conflict of interest in given her lobbying for MHI. Note that other years are involved, there was no need for us to show years of the same form for the same organization. That said, the tipster was correct in sending MHProNews all of those intervening years, as it reflects the ongoing activities. You can download this image and open it full size for easier reading.

If MHI’s executive committee gave their consent, what possible advantage could this give to MHI’s members?

LobbyingActivityWhiteHouseCongressHUDTreasuryLesliGoochManufacturedHousingInstituteCapitolAdvisorsNationalCommunityRenaissanceManufacturedHomeProNews
This portion of the document reflects what issues that lobbying involved. While some of this may have no apparent overlap with manufactured housing on the surface, other points clearly do. The agencies involved include Congress, HUD, the White House and the U.S. Treasury. Again, there are years of these records that were provided to MHProNews. We’re retaining those documents for the use of possible federal/state investigators with respect to legal concerns raised in this report or others linked from this report. You can download this image and open it full size for easier reading.

Don’t these issues only underscore other evidence or the problematic effectiveness at achieving the stated goals of MHI? Does MHI’s executive committee mean what they say when they claim to want growth, but staff are working for outside interests?

Whether the MHI board of directors/executive committee knew of this or not, the appearances of this are problematic at best, or potentially deceptive and fraudulent at worst.

The documents above led to an online search, which uncovered these additional points of evidence of outside work by Lesli Gooch beyond her work for MHI.

CapitolPolicyAdvisorsFECLesliGoochWhileManufacturedHousingInstituteMHI-EVPManufacturedHomeProNews
From the FEC website, Lesli Gooch is shown in 2015 as a principal – a title typically used to reflect an ownership interest in a business. In 2018, the FEC record at the top shows her as a Government Affairs Executive for Capitol Policy Advisors. Can you spell conflicts of interest? This arguably raises an array of questions that only full transparency by MHI – or an outside investigation into the association’s practices – can properly begin to unpack.

 

ConfidentialNewsTipsDocumentsManufacturedHomeProNews
To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line. Notice: we recommend that tipsters NOT use a company or organizational email or cell phone for providing tips. MHProNews has a solid history of protecting our sources of information, as years of prior tips and off-the-record comments reflect. That said, anonymous tips are also welcome, so long as the evidence provided is apparently genuine.

There is an additional message to MHProNews that doesn’t name the person(s) allegedly involved, but claimed that beyond Gooch, there was at least one more at MHI who was purportedly moonlighting for another operation. Given that Rick Robinson was so named in a different message, was it him or someone else?

How extensive are these outside interests by supposed full-time MHI staff?

Robinson’s now gone from MHI, but that doesn’t mean that the concerns have ended. It is arguably one thing that he writes books on the side if it is done on his own time.  But what other legal work might he have done while working for MHI? Would that have been disclosed to MHI’s executive committee? Did those involve conflicts of interest too?

As is evidence from the follow up emails and the FEC items, the series of tips and comments sparked by these documents led to a search which revealed that Gooch is shown in Federal Election Committee filings in 2015 as a principal at Capitol Policy Advisors. Later in 2018, she is shown as an executive for the same firm.

With millions of dollars collectively spent over the years on top level MHI executives, and with so little in terms of measurable results produced by MHI to show for it, doesn’t that add to previously itemized concerns reported by MHProNews?

If top staff at MHI are doing work that involves purported conflicts of interests, in what real sense are they doing the work that MHI purports to be engaged in?

Does such evidence make MHI’s of conflicts of interest that were apparently known by at least some at MHI fit a definition of deceptive trade practices with respect to current or potential new MHI members? Is the evidence of possible fraud? What other legal issues are raised?

By way of disclosure and for balance, MHProNews reached out for comments to see if this might somehow be defensible. An executive with ties to manufactured housing said the following.

Tony, Based on the information you’ve provided, the tipster must be concerned about conflict of interest. But, on its face, it’s not necessarily a conflict of interest. First, the primary housing association needs to know about the arrangement. Second, the second housing association must not have positions on issues that are opposed to those of manufactured housing.”

That feedback reflects intelligent, dispassionate feedback.

Applying that reasoning, while there may be times that conventional housing and manufactured housing share interests, it is difficult to see how these outside interests in any way benefit manufactured housing. Indeed, conflicts of interests must have been the reasoning of the tipster.

To the degree that federal agencies or others know of a top executive of MHI working for competing interests, doesn’t that in itself create an image problem for an already image challenged trade association?

Another source, this one connected to MHI, said: “I know that when Lesli [Gooch] was hired she was a principal partner in another lobbing firm and kept that relationship for several years. Rick may have had relationships with law firms in Kentucky...”

A different message in response to our inquires about these Gooch related documents stated: I don’t know if the board/executive committee was aware of this. It seemed highly unusual. MHI also had an outside firm doing lobbing…”

Given that Gooch has arguably been credibly accused of paltering…

InvestorAlertManufacturedHousingInstitutePalterinConcernsFannieMaeDutyToServeLesliGoochManufacturedHousingInvestingStockUpdatesMHProNews
https://www.manufacturedhomepronews.com/investor-alert-manufactured-housing-institute-paltering-concerns-fannie-maes-duty-to-serve-plus-manufactured-housing-investing-stocks-updates/

…and Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison and others have been arguably been demonstrated to have de facto evidence of purported perjury,

 

PrimaFacieCaseRichardJennisonTimWilliamsKevinClaytonTomHodgesPhotoManufacturedHousingInstitute21stMortgClaytonHomesLogoEtAlManufacturedHomeProNews
https://www.manufacturedhomepronews.com/masthead/prima-facie-cases-against-manufactured-housing-institute-richard-a-dick-jennison-tim-williams-21st-mortgage-kevin-clayton-tom-hodges-clayton-homes-et-al/

 

…doesn’t this latest document drop only underscore reasons for a formal investigation of MHI, staff and ‘big boy’ members?

The behavior is scandalous on its face. While this is being uncovered, legislation is being introduced into Congress that has been sparked by allegedly predatory practices by MHI members. There are also calls from Congress for investigations into various MHI member connected actions.

CongresswomanAbbyFinkenauerPhotoRipsFrankRolfeDaveReynoldsHaveparkCapitalTroublingPredatoryDeceptivePracticesCallsFederalInvestigationsManufacturedHomeProNewsMAST
https://www.manufacturedhomepronews.com/congresswoman-rips-frank-rolfe-dave-reynolds-havenpark-for-troubling-predatory-deceptive-practices-calls-for-federal-investigations/

Last and perhaps not least with respect to the documents from the tipster.

It seems apparent that whomever sent this news tip was aware of the issue but also wanted to undermine/expose Gooch and/or MHI. That too begs questions, such as who sent it and for what motivations? For instance:

  • Was the tipster an industry insider warning the industry in good faith?
  • Or was the tip an effort to compete with Gooch or get even for some perceived wrong? Some combination of those two bullets?
  • Could it have been someone outside of MHI that had knowledge of the apparent conflict of interests and wanted to spotlight this new controversy?

Either way, whatever the motivations, the tips are valued and useful to the interests of the manufactured housing industry at large in understanding the controversies involving the Arlington, VA based MHI.

So too are any other such insights from those in the know. As food for thought, revealing problematic behavior in the poorly performing manufactured housing industry is a potentially medicinal step. It is news tips like these that keep us as the documented runaway most-read news, fact-checks analysis and commentary trade media site in all of manufactured housing.

MHProNews notes that when tips are provided we recommend that company/organizational email or cell phones not be used for that purpose. Use your own phone or email address instead. Insights shared in confidence are so kept, as longtime readers and previous tipsters already know.

The totality of this latest revelations only undergirds prior concerns that arguably merit formal investigations. See the related reports for more.

Given various federal and state agency probes already know that are exploring manufactured housing industry related issues, this matter with Gooch and how business is done at MHI merits no less than a formal probe, preferably from a credible outside agency. The industry’s years of underperformance in manufactured housing can’t be intelligently explained as pure chance.

ManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoMHILogoQuoteShipmentsDownPotentialHighManufacturedHomeProNewsMastheadLATTonyKovach
MHI’s own email contradicts what MHI’s home page video postures. See the collage of screen captures above.
MHI2.0LogoManufacturedHousingInstitute-EmailManufacturedHomeProNews
MHI 2.0 is different than MHI in recent years…how?
ManufacturedHomeProductionShipmentSince1995MastheadManufacturedHousingAnalysisMHProNews
Buffett led-Berkshire Hathaway clearly has the capital and the credit lines needed to fund any sort of educational and/or marketing campaign that their wholly owned subsidiary Clayton Homes may desire. So how does one explain fewer manufactured home sales in 2018 or 2019 than in 2003, when Berkshire first acquired Clayton Homes and their affiliated lending? How does one explain that in 2019, year over year manufactured home shipments are declining – per MHI’s own admission – during an affordable housing crisis? How is momentum in reverse growth for industry independents? Doesn’t it just fuel more consolidation and discounted valuations? 

MHProNews can raise the issues, and provide the documentary evidence and pose the rationale and questions. But it is up to public officials and others who are impacted who must then step up and act upon that evidence. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## See Related Reports, further below. Text/image boxes often are hot-linked to other reports that can be access by clicking on them. Any third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

LATonyKovachPhotoBrianKilmeadePhotoMastheadManufacturedHomeProNew
MHI loves their photo ops. The photo above reflects the point that photo ops can be arranged. What matters more than photo ops is actual positive outcomes for the majority of manufactured industry professionals, not just benefits for a select few. Want more photos? Stay tuned.

By L.A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews.com.

Tony earned a journalism scholarship and was recognized with the prestigious Lottinville Award in history from the University of Oklahoma, where he also studied business management with a perfect 4.0 and made the Dean’s List. Tony has earned multiple awards in manufactured housing and in history. He’s a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Office 863-213-4090 |Connect on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach

 

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Related References:

The text/image boxes below are linked to other reports, which can be accessed by clicking on them.

 

AddressingAffordableHousingCrisisIncomeInequalityEnforcingGoodCurrentLawsIllustratedReportAnalysisManufacturedHomeLivingNews1
https://www.manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/addressing-growing-affordable-housing-crisis-income-inequality-by-enforcing-good-current-laws-illustrated-report-analysis/
FHFA-GSEsHighCostMinoritiesAllAmericansDueAssertedFailureFollowDutyToServeAffordableHousingExistingFederalLawsManufacturedHomeMHProNews
https://www.manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/fhfa-gses-high-cost-to-minorities-all-americans-due-to-asserted-failures-to-follow-duty-to-serve-affordable-housing-existing-federal-laws/
MinorityReportWhyMajorityShouldEngageSolvableProblemsHomelessnessAffordableHousingManufacturedHomeProNewsMast
https://www.manufacturedhomepronews.com/minority-report-why-majority-should-engage-in-solvable-problems-of-homelessness-and-affordable-housing/
RobertBobVanCleefManufacturedHomeCommunityLeaderDiscussesManufacturedHousingInsanityManufacturedHomeLivingNews
https://www.manufacturedhomepronews.com/masthead/making-affordable-manufactured-housing-appealing-and-great-again
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https://www.manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/bridging-gap-affordable-housing-solution-yields-higher-pay-more-wealth-but-corrupt-rigged-billionaires-moat-is-barrier/
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https://www.manufacturedhomepronews.com/saturday-satire-and-executive-summaries-for-manufactured-housing-professionals-investors-advocates-researchers-public-officials-and-investigators/

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