This is a response to the June 25-27 full page paid advertisement in The State Journal, “Let Kentucky Capital Development Corporation (KCDC) Do Its Job!” Contrary to the title, that is exactly what our group of concerned citizens, as well as the Franklin County Fiscal Court and the city commission, are trying to get them to do, which is why they significantly cut KCDC’s funding over the past two years!
The ad failed to specify any of the concerned citizens’ facts, as stated in our open letter, that were incorrect. Instead it relied entirely on subjective personal opinions by selected character witnesses that carry no evidentiary weight. No sources are cited nor is there any substantiated proof of the accomplishments attributed to KCDC President/CEO Terri Bradshaw. In fact, evidence points to the contrary.
Nothing in the ad changes the fact that our community experienced a net decrease in jobs (QCEW report) during Bradshaw’s tenure, while all other surrounding counties except Owen gained a significant number of jobs in the same period, or the articles Bradshaw plagiarized and submitted to The State Journal.
Here is just a partial list of issues that we have with the paid advertisement:
• The ad credits Bradshaw with the Beam Suntory expansion. However, this expansion was already in the works as discussed in a State Journal article dated Sept. 12, 2013, more than a year before Bradshaw’s hiring in June 2015.
• Bradshaw is credited with Buffalo Trace’s $1.4 billion expansion. However, an email from Bradshaw’s predecessor to the KCDC board discussed the Buffalo Trace expansion project on Nov. 6, 2013. Besides, it is incredulous to think that the expansion of the “most award-winning distillery in the world” that is enjoying $52.2 million in sales, hinged on anything Bradshaw did.
• KCDC emails from March 5, 2013 and March 9, 2015, announced that Frankfort was named a top micropolitan area, again preceding the hiring of Bradshaw. It certainly appears that Bradshaw inherited and benefited from the accomplishments of her predecessor.
• Further, The State Journal reported that the DeLambre brothers recruited Goodwood, not Bradshaw.
• The “business leaders” credited Bradshaw with Castle and Key Distillery. Castle and Key Distillery is located in Woodford County. Why are they praising Bradshaw for using Frankfort/Franklin County tax dollars to benefit Woodford County instead of Franklin County?
• Furthermore, we found on the Chamber of Commerce Facebook page from 2011 through 2017, announcing the "Women Leading Change" group meetings and agenda. The Women Leading Change’s educational and networking agenda is eerily similar to that of EmpowHER Frankfort, which Bradshaw allegedly “created.” Notwithstanding, the ad fails to say how many jobs or how much growth was created through the EmpowHER Frankfort social gatherings?
• The two awards that Bradshaw/KCDC claim to have received, Industry Era, India, (“Top 10 CEO of 2020”) and Acquisition International, AI Global Media, United Kingdom, (“Most Outstanding Economic Development Agency In the Southeast U.S.”) are listed (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vanity_award) as pay-for-play scams. Apparently a fact not lost on the "business leaders," as their paid ad failed to cite her "Top 10 CEO of 2020" commendation, for which she was “honored” in a front page State Journal “staff report” (with color photo), which would seem to be her most prestigious award.
In conclusion, the “business leaders” who contributed funds toward this advertisement fail to cite their sources, fail to define their evidence, fail to explain how Bradshaw should get credit, and fail to note the number of jobs created by Bradshaw’s alleged accomplishments.
As residents who look at the facts and want the best for the community, we are mystified at the seemingly blind allegiance to a “complex” president/CEO who has plagiarized, misrepresented her accomplishments, personally attacked her critics, and underperformed. And now with the third KCDC board member resigning since June, citing “the complex issues facing KCDC”, isn’t it time to simplify the matter?
Jim Daniel is a lifelong Frankfort resident and retired Kentucky Department for Environmental Protection enforcement agent. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.