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Reno Business Weekly: Community Health Alliance settles lawsuit against former employee, federal complaint ongoing



Community Health Alliance last week settled its lawsuit filed against a former employee. The details of the settlement are confidential.

CHA sued its former employee, James Fleming, after he filed a federal whistleblower complaint against the health nonprofit. 

CHA alleged Fleming defamed the organization and threatened to publicize confidential information. CHA also filed a temporary protective order against Fleming.

CHA officials alleged Fleming was going to divulge confidential information after Fleming, for more than a year, was posting on social media various allegations of illegal activity at CHA. 

However, during a court hearing in late March, CHA attorney Alex Velto admitted to the court he had no idea if Fleming actually possessed confidential information. 

“We’re not entirely sure what Mr. Fleming has access to, but we know if it’s confidential, and it relates to healthcare, it cannot be released,” he told the court. 

CHA wanted District Court Judge Kathleen Drakulich to issue an injunction against Fleming. The confidential settlement, however, nullified that effort.

Fleming posted online that he had access to CHA’s servers but later said he only wrote that because he was trolling CHA. He told Drakulich the only information he took from CHA was information related to the federal whistleblower complaint he filed against CHA prior to being fired by the nonprofit.

That complaint has resulted in a federal investigation against CHA. The investigation is ongoing.

Prior to the settlement, Fleming said he stood by what he wrote on Medium about CHA, articles that alleged CHA committed fraud by misusing grants and federal funds.

Children’s Cabinet announces employer childcare program

The Children’s Cabinet has a new employer childcare development program that supports Nevada businesses. The nonprofit will conduct an analysis of what businesses offer for childcare and then it will compare offerings to national standards. 

“Employers who help find or offset the cost of childcare are more likely to retain their workforce,” said Kim Cullen with the Children’s Cabinet. “Employers who provide family friendly benefits see great returns, including a 30% reduction in employee absences, a 60% decrease in employee turnover and 55% of parents would take a pay cut for a job that offers childcare…”

Contact Kim Cullen at [email protected] or 775-843-1324 for more information.


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Business news briefs

DCG promotes operations director.  Dickson Commercial Group (DCG) recently announced the promotion of Kim Ferlingere from office administrator to director of operations. Ferlingere has been in the real estate industry for 25 years. “Kim is such a big part of our culture and is truly the glue in our office,” said Tom Fennell, CCIM, principal of DCG. “She has been critical to our operations and growth as a company. DCG has also hired Jason Hallahan to assist in both administrative and marketing coordination. 

Dragonfly Energy honored as NCET tech company of the year. The Lithium-ion battery technology company is headquartered in Reno and has been selected as NCET’s (Nevada Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology) Technology Company of the year for 2022.  “This award is a great honor for our company,” said Denis Phares, Dragonfly Energy co-founder and CEO. Dragonfly Energy has a mission to make renewable energy affordable and accessible to all.

Katie Pace

Rebuilding Together Northern Nevada hires executive director.  The chapter of national non-profit Rebuilding Together works to provide home repairs for low-income homeowners. It recently hired its first full-time executive director, Katie Pace. “My former experiences have lent me compassion for so many in our community, in particular those who are less able to care for themselves whether they are getting older or they have a disability,” Pace said. 

C&G Franchise Development offering promotional products for businesses. A new and local option for branded products has emerged with the recent launch of C&G Franchise Development’s Nevada-based corporation BPL Supplies. Business partners and franchisors are John Choi and Klaus Grimm, and they offer branded products, such as hats, corporate apparel and business cards, as well as supplies and resources. “Companies are facing numerous challenges including supply chain issues that have caused major disruptions. Add to that a large percentage of the workforce that is still working remotely. BPL Supplies aims to fill a gap to help companies service their customers and employees,” Grimm said.

Bhatti awarded a $25,000 scholarship from Chick-fil-A. Jaanavai Bhatti is one of 12 Chick-fil-A employees nationwide to receive $25,000 as part of the company’s Remarkable Futures Scholarship program. These recipients were selected through their inspiring personal stories showcasing the many obstacles they’ve overcome to pursue their academic dreams, according to a press release statement. Bhatti works at Chick-fil-A Sparks Boulevard and Interstate 80 and is also a junior at the University of Nevada Reno, where she is majoring in microbiology and immunology. “This scholarship will help me focus on my journey to help aid children with deformities and to ease the stress financially off of me and my family,” she said.

Bob Conrad
Bob Conradhttp://thisisreno.com
Bob Conrad is publisher, editor and co-founder of This Is Reno. He has served in communications positions for various state agencies and earned a doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Nevada, Reno in 2011. He is also a part time instructor at UNR and sits on the boards of the Nevada Press Association and Nevada Open Government Coalition.