Ethics – Real Questions Need Answering

Written by John Face

September 30, 2021

Editorial

As Richard Lindsey who is an attorney with the firm Abbott, Thomson, Mauldin, Parker, Beer and Rick out of Jackson MI worked his social media campaign supporting Albion College and its President Mathew Johnson there was one thing he was failing to do and that was disclose his relationship to Albion College.  I am not talking about his being an alumnus of Albion College as that is one thing he has long been proud of, as he should be. 

I am talking about his law firm representing Albion College in matters of purchasing property around the campus and around Washington Gardner.  I am talking about Lindsey as being the attorney personally doing the leg work so to speak for the firm trying to buy property. 

Lindsey has made a point to prove what is “fact or fiction”, even to the point of invoking my name in one of his rants.  All the while he was being super champion of Johnson and the college he did not publically disclose the financial relationship between himself, his firm and the college.  That disclosure only came after he must have heard that I was looking into his connections with the college.  I mean literally hours after I was asking questions about this connection with an individual who is selling their property.

So Lindsey got on social media, specifically Facebook and spoke of many things that are legal, fact or fiction and giving examples of legal precedent to back up his legal claims, and oh yeah he mentioned without much fanfare that he was gaining financially representing the college.

Now that last point has gone quietly to the side and it should be front and center.  Let me state this it appears it is legal for Lindsey to do this and I certainly don’t begrudge a man making a living.  The issues are much larger and let’s state them.

Richard Lindsey is the President of the Marshall Public School Board of Education.  Richard Lindsey is an alumnus of Albion College.  Richard Lindsey is a big supporter of Albion College President Mathew Johnson.  Richard Lindsey is an attorney with Abbott, Thomson, Mauldin, Parker, Beer and Rick out of Jackson MI, the firm making money off the college acquiring property for the college.   Richard Lindsey supports the Bond issue that will be on the November Ballot, we know this because he voted to put it before the voters.

Read the previous paragraph again.  Is this ethical?  That’s a good question.  It appears that it is legal for Lindsey to represent the college but ethical?  Ethics are more than rules set up but professional organizations and Boards.  Ethics are in your own heart.  Ethics add to your moral compass that we all should have, most certainly someone who has been entrusted with leading our school district.  Is Lindsey being ethical?  You decide.

Complete disclosure:  I have known Richard Lindsey for around 6 years.  I met him during the yes campaign for annexation and he was a fountain of information for me then.  We have continued to have a friendship since and have enjoyed meeting with each other socially as well.  Richard represented me as my attorney during the City of Albion’s investigation that included the Cities attempt to get information from me about my sources.  Of course the city got nothing but still Richard sat with me and guided me legally during my interview.  I do not have an axe to grind regarding Richard but I will not sit still and have him imply that I have been dishonest and incomplete in my reporting.  That is not going to happen.  I walk the streets knowing I have been ethical in this entire situation regarding Albion College and Mathew Johnson.  The fact is folks I considered Richard Lindsey a friend.  Apparently that friendship was one sided.  Lesson learned.

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