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Proviso Probe

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

analysis of Welch's counter suit

Forest Park Review (Josh Adams) covered Emanuel "Chris" Welch's counter suit against Burt Odelson and Mark Sterk.

Background:

  • Welch was president of the Proviso Township High Schools (District 209) board of education.
  • Odelson & Sterk is a politically connected law firm. At this point O&S's most important patron is Cook County Board President Todd Stroger.
  • The D209 board of education hired Odelson & Sterk.
  • Odelson & Sterk made campaign contributions to Welch.
  • The D209 board of education terminated Odelson & Sterk (and hired another politically connected firm Giglio & Del Galdo, now known as the Del Galdo Group).
  • Proviso Insider wrote a blog post accusing Odelson & Sterk of criminal activity in the federal probe of the Melrose Park Police Department. (Proviso Insider defamed many other people, including, me (Carl Nyberg)).
  • The identity of Proviso Insider was technically unknown, but based on the subject matter and perspective it was widely assumed Proviso Insider was either Welch or people working on his behalf.
  • To identify Proviso Insider, the plaintiff in Sterk vs. Proviso Insider had to subpoena computer records that showed the computers used to post to Proviso Insider were at Sanchez & Daniels, Welch's employer. Sanchez & Daniels further provided that the addresses corresponded to computers at the work stations of Welch and Emily Robinson.
  • Welch has now filed a counter suit claiming his former employer, James Roche, fired Welch for objecting to over billing by Odelson & Sterk.


In the original post on Proviso Insider (now removed) Welch included details of Odelson saying the over billing was going to campaign contributions.

I'm pretty sure the biggest recipient of Odelson & Sterk contributions in Proviso Township were elections where Welch was running (school board or state rep) or elections where school board candidates loyal to Welch were running.

The fact that Welch was the recipient of Odelson & Sterk campaign contributions for years, makes me highly skeptical that Welch didn't know the bills were being padded earlier. If the system worked for years with Welch being perfectly ignorant (an incredible premise in the first place) what happened that caused Welch to see the system for what it was?

Also, Welch is alleging Odelson & Sterk defrauded District 209. Has Welch filed criminal charges against Odelson & Sterk? Why not?

Has Welch initiated a District 209 suit to recover the money Odelson & Sterk billed illegitimately?

If Odelson & Sterk acted unethically in its conduct with District 209, an attorney who was aware of this unethical conduct was obligated to report this conduct to the Attorney Registration & Disciplinary Commission of the Supreme Court of Illinois. Welch is an attorney. Why didn't he file an ARDC complaint against Odelson & Sterk?

And when did Welch learn he had been sacked from Roche for firing Odelson & Sterk? Why did he wait until now to file this suit?

Here is some speculation on my part.

1. [This paragraph was removed as a result of Judge Martin Agran granting a temporary restraining order ICO Emanuel C. Welch v. Proviso Probe and Carl Nyberg (2008) on July 16, 2008.]
2. Welch is feeling the heat of the Sterk v. Proviso Insider suit. Welch knows the facts and the law are on Sterk's side. And the only way Welch can avoid the consequences of losing the case is to delay the resolution of the case or to convince Odelson & Sterk they have too much to lose pursuing the case.
3. In the deleted post on Proviso Insider there were anonymous that included further dirt on Odelson & Sterk. One of the posts provided details about a mistress of one of the parties involved. I think Welch was clearly saying, "I will make this painful for you [Odelson & Sterk] even if I lose."
4. The counter suit also allows Welch to make a weak claim, but a claim nonetheless that Sterk v. Proviso Insider does peripherally touch on his duties as president of the D209 board of education. This is an important fact to create since Welch and three of his allies have already voted over $22,400 of tax payer money to pay Welch's legal bills (delaying legal consequences is expensive work, y'know?) in the Sterk v. Proviso Insider case.

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19 Comments:

  • Carl is everything a big conspiracy theory with you? Have you ever given it a thought that Welch is not the bad guy here? Is it possible that he truly did not know about Odelson and Sterk's billing practices until it was brought to his attention? Why would any one board member know about a law firm's billing practices? If Welch knew, did other board members know? When Theresa Kelly was president, isn't that when the Board hired Odelson and Sterk? Did Odelson and Sterk donate to her campaign(s)? I bet they did. I think your blog is as biased, if not more so, than the Proviso Insider. You don't ever seem to believe that Chris Welch is possibly the good guy.

    By Anonymous Carl you're wrong this time, at 8:39 AM, July 03, 2008  

  • Carl, is it true that Welch sued you before? Is it possible that he will sue you again when you make statements like he was a co conspirator in an illegal kickback scheme? Aren't you accusing him of committing a crime? Do you have anything to base that speculation on? That's a pretty strong statement, and if I were you, I would take it down. My guess is Welch and Odelson and Sterk have there lawyers ready to knock on your door. All those dogs are vicious.

    By Anonymous One more thing Carl, at 8:42 AM, July 03, 2008  

  • I think Odelson and Sterk have a lot problems ahead. If they tried to intimidate a public official to prevent their firing, the ARDC is going to have a field day with that one? And if they actually succeeded in having the public official fired from his private sector job, they have real problems. Possibly disbarment. In regards to Welch and the ARDC, is it possible Carl that SD209 is trying to negotiate with Odelson and Sterk before filing a lawsuit? I heard something like that has been going on for months. I also heard that once their resolution one way or the other, ethics complaints will then be filed against Odelson and Sterk. It's all unfolding as we speak I guess.

    By Anonymous Odelson and Sterk are in trouble, at 8:45 AM, July 03, 2008  

  • Welch is not the good guy and I hope he continues his self-destructive behavior. Welch's comments seem downright threatening. I hope no one starts looking too closely at Welch's billing practices.

    By Anonymous liberal, at 1:52 PM, July 03, 2008  

  • A lawyer for one of the public figures involved sent me one of them threatening emails.

    After the first five or so threats, they just don't have as much effect anymore.

    Anyways...

    The writings after I said Here is some speculation on my part.
    includes speculation that some people have done bad, possibly illegal, things.

    I can't prove everything I speculate about, but I still think it's a likely scenario.

    By Blogger Carl Nyberg, at 5:11 PM, July 03, 2008  

  • Carl, you have not been able to prove anything ever that you have toyed and played with. You make make accusations and speculations but never, ever and proof.

    You are an injustice to mankind and society.

    By Anonymous Pete, at 11:57 PM, July 03, 2008  

  • I agree with Carl,those are possible scenarios,which can occur.Based on the analysis,it can be speculated.
    I do believe that since Chris Welch is a public official,he should develop thicker skin.Also public officials are open to critisicm and theories and or speculation.

    By Anonymous welch is a big crybaby!, at 10:55 PM, July 05, 2008  

  • Carl, I think you have some interesting theories, but perhaps all Emanuel Welch is trying to do is increase business for the school attorneys.

    By Anonymous kringle, at 5:07 PM, July 06, 2008  

  • When will Chris Welch and his cronies(Brian Cross,Dan Adams,Sue Henry,Cox and Foreman),when will they stop the stealing and instead try to truely improve education???
    What has Charles Flowers done to stop this mess at 209,since he is now the REGIONAL SUPERINTENDENT OF COOK COUNT SCHOOLS?????
    What has State Senator,who is heads the committee for Education for state senate of Illinois,and maywood resident,KIMBERLY LIGHTFORD DONE TO STOP 209 FROM WASTING TAXPAYERS MONEY FROM BEING SPENT TO PROTECT THE EVIL,AND SLANDEROUS, SO CALLED PROVISO INSIDER BLOG,WHICH WAS SUPPOSED TO BE FROM AN INDIVUDAL FROM FOREST PARK,BUT IS NOW KNOWN TO BE RUN BY CHRIS WELCH AND EMILY ROBINSON AND BRIAN CROSS AND NICOLE TROTTIE????

    By Anonymous WICKSMASTER, at 5:16 PM, July 06, 2008  

  • After reading Welch's countersuit on his blog,the Proviso Insider, my take is that Welch is hoping to make Odelson and Sterk expand their suit to involve 209,so that Welch can have a cover so as 209 can then pay his legal fees.
    Also Welch's claims seem ingeuine and can probably cause other individuals,who have been terminated in their empoyment at 88,89 and 209 to then sue Welch for doing what he alleges Odlson and Sterck to have done to him.

    Carl what I want to know is why did Sue Henry vote against paying for Welch's legal fees? And, why did Brian Cross abstain from voting? I heard Cross abstained because of his personal and romatic relationship with co - defendent Emil Robinson and that Sue Henry voted against Welch because Welch and Nikita refused to give her daughter a $15,000 pay rise;any truth to those rumors?

    By Anonymous what is going on?, at 5:43 PM, July 06, 2008  

  • Obviously, we’ve come a long way since Medieval times, but here in Illinois, we seem to be reverting to Feudalism.On Chris Welch's blog, the Proviso Insider there is some commentary on the potential of a lawsuit between Chris Welch against the previous 209 attorneys, and current attorneys for Todd Stroger,Odlson and Streck. How droll.

    Read the Wikipedia description of Feudalism below, and the only thing missing are the crossbows and trebuchets, which just might make a return in a Welch v. Odlson/Sterck battle.

    Lords, Vassals, and Fiefs

    Before a lord could grant land (a fief) to someone, he had to make that person a vassal. This was done at a formal and symbolic ceremony called a commendation ceremony composed of the two-part act of homage and oath of fealty. During homage, the lord and vassal entered a contract in which the vassal promised to fight for the lord at his command. Fealty comes from the Latin fidelitas and denotes the fidelity owed by a vassal to his feudal lord. “Fealty” also refers to an oath that more explicitly reinforces the commitments of the vassal made during homage. Such an oath follows homage. Once the commendation was complete, the lord and vassal were now in a feudal relationship with agreed-upon mutual obligations to one another. (Perfectly describes the REAL process when one decides to run for office)

    The lord’s principal obligation was to grant a fief, or its revenues, to the vassal; (Patronage jobs, kickbacks, ghost payroll and pensions for the family) the fief is the primary reason the vassal chose to enter into the relationship. In addition, the lord sometimes had to fulfil other obligations to the vassal and fief. One of those obligations was its maintenance. (increased budgets, regardless of need) Since the lord had not given the land away, only loaned it, it was still the lord’s responsibility to maintain the land, while the vassal had the right to collect revenues generated from it. Another obligation that the lord had to fulfill was to protect the land and the vassal from harm. (knocking opponents off the ballot, restricting alternative parties)

    The vassal’s principal obligation to the lord was to provide “aid”, or military service. (Organization, Campaign Funds)Using whatever equipment the vassal could obtain by virtue of the revenues from the fief, (Income, gas, utility, property, income, & sales taxes, user fees) the vassal was responsible to answer to calls to military service on behalf of the lord. This security of military help was the primary reason the lord entered into the feudal relationship. (Party organization, 4 tops campaign cash) In addition, the vassal sometimes had to fulfill other obligations to the lord. (Kill that bill) One of those obligations was to provide the lord with “counsel”, so that if the lord faced a major decision, such as whether or not to go to war, he would summon all his vassals and hold a council. (The caucus meeting) The vassal may have been required to yield a certain amount of his farm’s output to his lord. The vassal was also sometimes required to grind his own wheat and bake his own bread in the mills and ovens owned and taxed by his lord.

    The land-holding relationships of feudalism revolved around the fief (Districts, Contracts, Protection from Competition). Depending on the power of the granting lord, grants could range in size from a small farm (1 or 2 patronage jobs) to a much larger area of land (Grant Park). The size of fiefs was described in irregular terms quite different from modern area terms; see medieval land terms. The lord-vassal relationship was not restricted to members of the laity; bishops and abbots, for example, were also capable of acting as lords (Jerimiah Wright, Jesse Jackson, Pfather Pfleger over their Alinski-ite shock troops).

    There were thus different ‘levels’ of lordship and vassalage. (State Reps AND Senators! Township Bureaucrats, School Board drones, Superintendents) The King was a lord who loaned fiefs (Education Monopolies, TIF monies) to aristocrats (Walgreens, Boeing, Teacher’s Unions), who were his vassals. Meanwhile the aristocrats were in turn lords to their own vassals, (IBRT, The Chamber, teachers) Knights who were in turn lords of the manor to the peasants (Taxpayers) who worked on the land. Ultimately, the Emperor was a lord who loaned fiefs to Kings, who were his vassals. This traditionally formed the basis of a ‘universal monarchy’ as an imperial alliance and a world order. (Disorder?!)

    It would be funny if it wasn’t 100% accurate. The only thing missing from this picture is the peasants with pitchforks (Illinois Citizens) storming the Bastille (voting ‘Yes’ on the Constitutional Convention). We can guillotine the terms of the incompetent through recall and term limits, as well as open up some transparency on the 100s of tricks and games listed in the above article.

    Vote “yes” on November 4th to put 118 new and fresh faces in a room to fix this poorly led and corrupted state.

    By Anonymous more plantation politics in proviso, at 5:53 PM, July 06, 2008  

  • Hey Carl, why has'nt Nicole Trottie's rag,The West Suburban Journal, why have'nt they written anything about Welch's 209 Board voting to pay for Welch's attorneys for a lawsuit not related to the 209 Taxpayers?
    What is it, is Trottie also a Welch's payroll?

    By Anonymous West subrban Journal is lost, at 8:09 PM, July 06, 2008  

  • this is just a wild story. welch has a personal lawsuit against him, but you and i will pay his attorney fees. apparently welch believes anything said about him reflects back to his board position. interesting (self-serving) position.

    my favorite quote:
    "With Kelly offering the only objections, Libka said he did not see a reason to disturb the apparent harmony on the matter."
    harmony? nice euphamism for complete & utter negligence.

    or:
    "The superintendent (Libka), whose contract expires at the end of the month, also said he can see how the lawsuit and the district are "interrelated." Pressed to explain the connection Libka said he's not familiar with the details of the case.
    why are they letting this guy go? he seems perfect for the job.

    By Anonymous Westchester Irish, at 8:10 PM, July 06, 2008  

  • Odelson & Sterk are suing the Proviso Insider Blog and Chris Welch as an author of slanderous statements on that Blog.

    By 209 paying the legal fees, O&S should amend their suit to include District 209. In accepting Welch's legal fees, they are admitting that Proviso Insider is a public relations adjunct of District 209.

    Which alters the Insider's stated goals:
    The Proviso Insider is a web log where you can find unbiased, straightforward information about politics that affect Proviso Township. Our goal is to be a beacon of light in the midst of Proviso's darkness. .

    By Anonymous westchester irish, at 8:16 PM, July 06, 2008  

  • "Welch called his service as board president "a 24-hour-a-day job." He said that he has been sued three times before and that his legal fees were covered by the district on each occasion."

    How much, for what? Blog participation is voluntary, not a job requirement.

    By Anonymous gallons of BS,by Welch again, at 8:19 PM, July 06, 2008  

  • "Welch called his service as board president "a 24-hour-a-day job." He said that he has been sued three times before and that his legal fees were covered by the district on each occasion." How much, for what? Blog participation is voluntary, not a job requirement.



    Did he make the posts on the ProvisoInsider as Chris Welch, District 209 Board President or as Chris Welch, Political infighter? Neither? Posted anonymously as "The Insider has learned". Is he admitting that he made the posts in question? Is he denying...?

    Were his posts approved by the majority of the school board? Did he confer with school administration, staff or counsel before making the assertions and accusations alleged in the suit?

    Do you think he was acting within the scope of his duties by posting anonymous accusations on a blog site?

    Can the board's agreeing to pay legal costs be considered approval of such tactics and antics?

    If his service is 24/7 should his behaviors be monitored more closely?
    Are all of his actions and words, regardless of format, covered by the taxpayers pocketbook? Where do they draw the line? If he says things that later come back to bite him, are we to defend him and pay any/all costs?


    i had no idea welch was so dedicated to his board position. 24 hours a day - well, that leaves very little time for anything else, eh?

    don't you think the key issue here is his anonymous blogging?
    he tries to equate his strenuous 'undercover' work to giving interviews w/newspapers and radio. pitiful.
    yes, 'blogs are effective tools of communication' but not when the Board President posts anonymously.
    chicken pig.




    J"Welch called his service as board president "a 24-hour-a-day job." He said that he has been sued three times before and that his legal fees were covered by the district on each occasion." How much, for what? Blog participation is voluntary, not a job requirement.



    Did he make the posts on the ProvisoInsider as Chris Welch, District 209 Board President or as Chris Welch, Political infighter? Neither? Posted anonymously as "The Insider has learned". Is he admitting that he made the posts in question? Is he denying...?

    Were his posts approved by the majority of the school board? Did he confer with school administration, staff or counsel before making the assertions and accusations alleged in the suit?

    Do you think he was acting within the scope of his duties by posting anonymous accusations on a blog site?

    Can the board's agreeing to pay legal costs be considered approval of such tactics and antics?

    If his service is 24/7 should his behaviors be monitored more closely?
    Are all of his actions and words, regardless of format, covered by the taxpayers pocketbook? Where do they draw the line? If he says things that later come back to bite him, are we to defend him and pay any/all costs?




    i saw him at mcdonalds, i 'accidentally' dropped a napkin on his table with the words 'chicken pig, chicken pig' written on it.
    he's suing me, and you're paying for it :)

    By Anonymous Johnny Cochrane, at 8:26 PM, July 06, 2008  

  • Crissy must be in quite a pickle! Otherwise he wouldn't be doing what he is. Even if everything was hunkydory for District 209 paying his legal bill, his actions can be interpreted as a conflict of interest and poor judgement, especially for someone with a legal degree.

    By Anonymous Carl you have a point, at 12:55 PM, July 07, 2008  

  • To "what is going on?" I think it is in poor taste to speculate on Mr. Cross's personal life.
    I mean why don't you enlighten us as to just how soon after his wife passed away he began that relationship with Ms. Robinson?

    Carl, if I'm not mistaken you attended the wake for his wife. Yet you couldn't show enough decency to tamp down on such a nasty allegation.

    By Anonymous cynic, at 11:58 PM, July 09, 2008  

  • To Cynic:

    I agree it is in poor taste, but I think it is equally in poor taste that the Insider allowed the comments about Odelson's relationship to appear on their blog. Sometimes people can dish it out but can't have it dished to them. If Robinson is one of the writers with Welch on the Insider, then she should be prepared for some harsh statements, true or untrue, said about her. If she is one of the authors of the Insider, she should not be offended by any nasty allegations because the Insider has made many NASTY allegations against people. If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

    Also, who cares if Carl attended the wake; he didn't write the comment. In my opinion, I have seen Welch attend people's mothers funeral, and the next day he will either fire them, curse them, sue them, or something negative appears on the Insider. Now let's talk about decency?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:48 PM, July 10, 2008  

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