RICHMOND – The president of an economic development nonprofit denied that a Richmond trustee was employed by his group.
The Richmond Village Board agreed last month to withdraw its membership from World Trade Illinois under the impression that Trustee Dave Kielpinski was hired on as vice president just weeks after it joined the group on his recommendation.
The nonprofit's president, Bill Lada, vehemently denied that Kielpinski was hired by the group or paid for his services at a Village Board meeting Thursday evening.
"There was no job," he said. "Therefore, there was no quid pro quo. There's no job. There's no salary. There's no employment agreement."
Kielpinski has been working with the group as it puts together an opportunity in Harvard that could lead to 3,000 jobs, Lada said. He didn't give further details on the project, but he said some of the executives that could be located there may move to Richmond, one of the communities his group is highlighting.
"I help them out with things, but I mainly help them with Richmond," Kielpinski said at the meeting Thursday evening.
When concerns were raised last month, the Northwest Herald asked Kielpinski about his affiliation with World Trade Illinois, a nonprofit that aims to connect businesses and government entities on a global scale.
Kielpinski told the Northwest Herald he was offered a job as the nonprofit’s vice president of operations based on his work with Richmond and his role as the vice president of the nonprofit It’s All About Kids, which is dedicated to helping children with cancer and their families.
His LinkedIn profile lists his position at World Trade Illinois as vice president of operations.
Kielpinski declined at the time to give details about his pay.
He was approached about working with the organization about a week and a half after the Village Board had decided to become a member, which costs $750 in dues, he said, adding he hadn't worried about a potential conflict of interest because the vote had already happened.