Wednesday, October 29, 2014

GOP Leader Gary Ellerman's Allegation That WI Governor Candidate Mary Burke Fired From Trek Is False

Mary Burke and Gary Ellerman

Ellerman's allegation that Burke was fired by own family business is false, according to a Trek Bicycle Corp. statement.

By H. Nelson Goodson
October 29, 2014

Waterloo, WI - On Wednesday, Gary Ellerman, a former employee who was fired after working twelve years at Trek Bicycle Corporation and is the current Chair for the Jefferson County Republican Party is under fire for making false statements about Wisconsin candidate for Governor Mary Burke (D). Ellerman was quoted by the Wisconsin Reporter (WR) that Burke had been terminated from Trek, her own family business in the 1990's for poor performance. In response, Burke called Ellerman's false statement to the WR as "ridiculous" and "baseless."
Trek released the following statement about Ellerman's false allegation, "This last-minute attempt to disparage Mary's contributions to Trek is attributed to Gary Ellerman, Chairman of the Jefferson County Republican Party. Mr. Ellerman was fired from Trek in 2004. His politically motivated characterizations of Mary and her tenure at Trek are inaccurate. When Mary was in charge of Europe, she grew sales from $3 million to $50 million. In 1993, Mary decided that it was time for her to make a change and she left Trek. In 1995, John Burke asked Mary Burke to return to Trek to help with some key areas of the business. After she returned, Mary assumed the lead of Trek`s Global Forecasting department."
Ellerman could not be reached for comment because he is out of the country, according the Jefferson County GOP office.
Tom Albers another former Trek executive who was let go in 1997 after serving three years as President and CEO of Trek Bicycle Corporation from 1994 and a supporter of Governor Scott Walker (R) told WISN 1130 radio that indeed Mary Burke, a Democrat who is challenging Walker was fired by her father Dick Burke and brother John Burke. Albers came forward after Ellerman mentioned him as a person who also knew that Burke had been fired. Ellerman has a history of running as a false Democrat in several state races, but is a true Republican. Albers has contributed $500 to Walker's campaign, according to WISN 1130. Burke recently explained that her European position was eliminated after admitting she left Trek Bicycle Corp. when she felt burned out, which Albers believed was one of the reasons she was replaced, according to WISN 1130. Trek Bicycle Corporation has denied that Burke had been fired and that Burke left by her own decision to do so. Albers told WISN 1130 that he hasn't talked to Ellerman since 1997, but both are main GOP supporters who are worried that Burke could actually defeat Walker on November 4, according to some members of the WI GOP Party.
Hispanic News Network U.S.A. (HNNUSA) learned that Governor Walker knew of an inappropriate relationship before he appointed Scott Baumbach as the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (DWD) in 2011 after Manuel "Manny" Pérez, had resigned in May as DWD Secretary. Governor Walker and his administration (chief of staff) had learned of an allegation that Baumbach and Allison Rozek, then administrator for the Administrative Services Division were in a relationship. Apparently Walker knew of the relationship and still appointed Baumbach to the position. Baumbach resigned in October 2011 four months after Pérez resigned. Rozek had complained that she was being sexually harassed by a top administrator, but she later left her position and it is not known whether she resigned or was let go. Rozek never followed through with the sexual harassment compliant, probably because Walker had learned of the relationship between both Baumbach and Rozek. Governor Walker should have never appointed Baumbach as DWD Secretary knowing that it would haunt him later in his political career for re-election.
Walker, Pérez, Baumbach and Rozek could not be reached for comment.

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