Roscoe “Rocky” Marshall is a former member of the NRA Board of Directors. More importantly, he is an experienced business executive. He is now founder and CEO of Frontier Truck Gear. Prior to that, he served as president of two subsidiaries of oil field services giant Baker Hughes which is a Fortune 150 company. In other words, he can drill down into an income statement or balance sheet to get to the real health of an organization. What he has to say below is not encouraging as to the health of the NRA.
Rocky had sought to be an intervenor in the lawsuit brought by the Attorney General of New York against the NRA, Wayne LaPierre, John Frazier, Woody Phillips, and Josh Powell. He sought to do so to be an advocate for the members of the NRA as it seems no one is actively representing their interests before the court as opposed to the interests of LaPierre and company. His motion was ultimately denied. I met Rocky in person at the 2022 NRA Annual Meeting and have corresponded with him extensively. What he is saying below is not some spur of the moment comment. He has been reading the tea leaves and saying this exact thing for some time now.
The Late Great National Rifle Association R.I.P. by Former NRA Director Rocky Marshall
To NRA Members: IT IS OVER!
The NRA’s financials are spiraling rapidly towards insolvency, and the future appears bleak for
the survivability of the NRA which may be forced into bankruptcy (for real this time) in the
coming months. The next and final chapter for the NRA will be in a bankruptcy court where a
Judge will likely appoint a “Receiver” to take control of the assets of the NRA.
The NRA has been thriving for over 150 years; but will likely not survive to the end of this year.
This once great organization is now facing dissolution as the direct result of malfeasance by
Wayne LaPierre and the impotent Board of Directors (BOD). Undoubtedly, key management
personnel including Wayne Lapierre, Wilson Phillips, and others will likely face criminal charges
for embezzlement, fraud, wire fraud, money laundering and other charges.
The NRA in the coming months will not be able to pay outstanding bills or maintain staff to
fulfill the mission due to the rapid decline of donations by members. In 2016, NRA revenues
reached a peak of $367 million and currently is projected to receive $200 million for the current
fiscal year 2022. The collapse in donations is directly related to the revelations that the NRA
Management misused millions of dollars of donations for personal benefit. The misuse of NRA
monies by NRA Management and the BOD has been reported as far back as 1998 when a
complaint was filed by NRA Directors with the FEC.1
A question that is often repeated is: “Why did the NRA BOD allow Wayne Lapierre and others to
misuse the donations and defraud the members?” The most obvious answer is because a few
key Directors were being paid. From 2002 through 2020, over $10 million dollars have been
paid directly or indirectly to NRA Directors. A secondary issue is that NRA Directors were not
informed and also routinely presented false information by NRA Officers and Management in
order to hide the truth. During my tenure as an NRA Director, I was routinely denied access to
information and also received blatantly untrue information from NRA officers. The NRA BOD
has not provided proper fiduciary oversight of the NRA for decades. The NRA BOD could have
easily stopped the fraud and mismanagement by Wayne LaPierre (and others) but instead
chose to ignore the obvious illegal activities. The BOD audit committee (chaired by the current
President Charles Cotton) approved transactions retro actively without BOD approval.
The current lawsuit from the New York Attorney General will likely not go to trial; but instead,
will be superseded by a forced bankruptcy. The negative press reports from these legal filings
will continue to drive donors away and revenues will decline. As a former Director for the NRA,
I have researched the complaints by the New York Attorney General and found all charges to be
true. I could not identify a single charge that was untrue or exaggerated. As has been
reported, Wayne Lapierre has admitted to several of the charges in the previous bankruptcy
trial in Dallas.
Historians and columnists will report in future years that the NRA was destroyed from within by
the greed of NRA Management Wayne LaPierre, Woody Phillips, (and others) and also by the
lack of oversight by the NRA Board of Directors. Collectively this group has destroyed the most
valuable gun rights organization on the planet.
- Weldon H. Clark Jr. FEC Complaint 1998 (https://www.fec.gov/files/legal/murs/4865/00001F57.pdf)
One thought on “Guest Post By Rocky Marshall”
So I just got around the reading the link that Rocky sent (or at least most of the meat of it). It’s definitely a sign that shenanigans and willingness to hide basic financial information from the Board that should have not only been accessible by them, but also by members have been happening for a long time. In my opinion, they show Wayne’s current actions are not really coming from a place of ignorance, but part of a history of trying to deceive those who should have financial oversight and a general combative nature about any check on his ability to spend where he & his friends want to spend.
What confuses me is: Why was this complaint filed with the FEC? I get that they had issues with the Arena PAC, but the vast majority of complaint has nothing to do with them. And what does – unless I overlooked it – doesn’t assert any actual violations by the PAC stated as a cause to open an investigation. There is actual wrongdoing cited here, but I don’t think any of it fell within the scope of the FEC at the time. Their basic premise for including all of those details was that because there’s some no good stuff happening and board members being denied access to records to conceal financial concerns outside of election matters, but many members take many communications from NRA into consideration for elections, this is why FEC should investigate.
This complaint seems like it would have been far more effective at cleaning house if submitted to the NY agency charged with overseeing charities back then. (Maybe it was? I don’t know.) Granted, I was in junior high and high school during these years, so I don’t know enough about the NY regulatory political climate or if the FEC had much broader charitable organization powers at the time. Maybe they did file it correctly and this complaint wasn’t as misdirected as it seems now. Still, if misfiling this with the wrong regulatory agency is the reason this stuff wasn’t handled back then…disappointing.
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