What made Lowell Billings approve and then try to cover up Anthony Pavia's and
James Sanford's swindle?
This trick must have been played many times at CVESD.
Lowell Billings most likely approved many documents that looked like this. Would you approve this
salary reduction agreement if you were Assistant Superintendent for Business Services?
Lowell Billings did.
This scanned document is exhibit A in the evidence against two individuals who were authorized
by CVESD and the teachers union to come into classrooms and give financial advice.
Does Lowell Billings recognize hoaxes when he sees them?
Does he intentionally look the other way when he comes across wrongdoing, or is he
innocent and incompetent?
Why did he fail to respond when informed that the people he was sending into classrooms
were committing fraud?
July 7, 2005
To: Lowell Billings, Superintendent
Chula Vista Elementary School District
From: Maura Larkins
I am deeply interested in knowing why your attorney [Kelly Angell of Stutz Artiano Shinoff & Holtz]
prepared the attached document on July 5, 2005, when I was NOT A JUDGMENT DEBTOR.
I really would like to receive an answer, Lowell.
It’s time for you to quit hiding behind your attorneys, allowing them to do wrong on behalf of CVESD.
Take some responsibility, Lowell.
The political links between developers and school officials are always interesting. Developers and
school officials tend to give to Republican groups, who then give money to school board members,
sometimes channeled through the Lincoln Club.
Donations from Coronado, California:
Mr. Lowell Billings, Jr. (CVESD/Superintendent), (Zip code: 92118) $200 to BRIAN BILBRAY FOR
CONGRESS on 09/15/06
Mr. Scott M Mcmillin (The Corky McMillin Companies/Owner), (Zip code: 92118) $2100 to BRIAN
BILBRAY FOR CONGRESS on 09/19/06
Lawyers, Developers and Politicians
When a financial advisor authorized by CVESD and Chula Vista Educators
contacted me, I assumed that his company must be honest. Why else would
Assistant Superintendent for Business Services Lowell Billings and the teachers
union (CVE) have authorized the company to come in to classrooms and use
school facilities for their own private business dealings?
It never occurred to me that Billings and the people in charge at CVE might
have an ulterior motive for authorizing access to teachers.
Chula Vista Elementary School District
Lowell Billings becomes involved
I eventually discovered that money was being taken out of my paycheck without my approval.
I asked Lowell Billings to provide me with a copy of the document that triggered the withdrawals.
He refused to provide it. After repeated requests, he finally produced the document below.
CVESD Superintendent Lowell Billings
Here are the hoaxes perpetrated on one teacher by Billings' and CVE's
I was ignorant about stocks and shares, and I believed that I was speaking with
an advisor who could be trusted. I believed it when I was told that B shares were
better than A shares. For years I couldn't figure out why I was losing money
when stocks were gaining. When my shares finally were converted to A shares, I
discovered exactly how much I had been losing.
The second hoax had to do with an investment that was portrayed at being
liquid. James Sanford and Anthony Pavia misrepresented a financial instrument,
causing me to invest $12,000. I got the money out just in time, before it was to
be locked up for years.
The third hoax was an investment that I never asked for (see document below,
with "Life Insurance of the South West" written in on the first line. I crossed it out
as soon as I saw it. They insisted that I initial the cross out.
Why didn't Anthony Pavia and James Sanford give me a clean form? They
claimed it was the only form they had with them.
On the second line Pavia and Sanford had written the name of the company
(Oppenheimer) with which I wanted to do business. They insisted that I cross it
out and write it on the first line. They also insisted that I initial my crossing out
on the second line.
So far, so good.
Well, it was pretty weird, but no wrongdoing had been committed yet.
The wrongdoing was committed later, when someone wrote in "Life Insurance of
the South West" on the second line.
Dealing with Mr. Anthony Pavia and Mr. James Sanford
Mr. Billings settles with Ana Stover for politically-
The company authorized by CVESD pulled off three hoaxes on this writer
(Maura Larkins). (I am a less trusting person now.) When I informed CVESD of
the problems, I was ignored.
Ana Stover v. CVESD, Lowell Billings
The pursuit of political power at the expense of education is exposed in this lawsuit by a
woman who was in line to be superintendent of Chula Vista Elementary School District, but
was illegally and maliciously sabotaged because she supported Russell
Coronado instead of Pamela Smith in a school board election.
This case was fought by attorney Daniel Shinoff on behalf of the school district but was
eventually settled privately.
Billings to retire as
By Janine Zúñiga
San Diego Union Tribune
May 1, 2010
Chula Vista Elementary School
District Superintendent Lowell
Billings has announced he will
retire in December from the
position he has held for eight
Billings, 59, is leaving after 36
years in South County public
education with mixed
Billings has run the largest
elementary school district in
the state since he was tapped
to replace outgoing
Superintendent Libby Gil in
2002. At the time, he was the
superintendent for business
Under Billings’ leadership,
seven schools have been
recognized as California
including three last week. He
has also overseen a marked
improvement in the district’s
Academic Performance Index,
or API, a series of test scores
parents often use when
selecting a good school. A
benchmark for achievement is
an API of 800.
The district’s score has
steadily increased from 689 in
2002 to 833 last year. In
2002, three of the district’s 44
schools had APIs above 800.
Last year, 32 had scores
above 800, with many headed
Billings refuses to take the
credit. Teachers and principals
set goals as part of a
“decentralized system,” with
the district providing guidance
and resources. But he expects
principals to care about more
than test scores, and insists
on a rich and powerful learning
environment in every
“Some principals find that task
is one that is well-aligned with
their professional endeavors,
but the climb gets too steep
for some,” Billings said. “When
that happens, it’s my job to
step in and ask them to step
down so someone else can
get the job done.”
The district has 27,500
students, mostly in
kindergarten through sixth
grade. However, two of five of
the district’s charter schools
recently added seventh and
eighth grades. Thirty-six
percent of district students are
English learners and 46
percent receive free or
reduced-cost lunch. The district
has 16 bilingual education
programs and nine dual-
Billings’ career began in the
classroom teaching Chula Vista
elementary school students.
He has held several positions,
mostly in the Chula Vista
district, and serves on many
local nonprofit boards,
including South Bay Family
YMCA, Sharp Chula Vista
Medical Center and Chula Vista
Rotary Club. He said he will
continue to work with the
organizations when he retires.
|San Diego Education Report
|San Diego Education Report
Ex-National Lampoon CEO
Tim Durham Gets 50 Years
By Andrew Harris & Howard Smulevitz
Nov 30, 2012
Timothy S. Durham, the onetime chief
executive officer of National Lampoon
(NLMP) Inc., was sentenced to 50
years in prison for defrauding
investors in an unrelated company he
“I found no sincere remorse,” U.S.
District Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson in
Indianapolis said today before
imposing punishment on Durham, 50.
She said the former Fair Finance Co.
CEO exhibited deceit, greed and
Timothy S. Durham , the former chief
executive officer of National Lampoon
Inc., was sentenced to 50 years in
prison for defrauding investors in an
unrelated company he partly
controlled. Photographer: Joe Vitti/The
Indianapolis Star via Getty Images
Prosecutors sought a sentence of 225
years under nonbinding federal
guidelines, which the judge rejected as
Durham, who was also the CEO of
Indianapolis-based buyout firm
Obsidian Enterprises Inc., and an
accomplice, James Cochran, 57, were
convicted in June of taking money
raised from Fair Finance investors,
spending it on themselves and lending
it to other entities they controlled. A
third man, Rick Snow, 49, was
convicted of helping to deceive
investors about the company’s
The three squandered $208 million of
investors’ money, according to U.S.
Attorney Joseph Hogsett in
Cochran, who was the chairman of
Akron, Ohio-based Fair Finance, was
sentenced to 25 years, not the 145
years prosecutors asked for. The
government recommended 85 years
for Snow, Fair Finance’s ex-chief
financial officer. He received a 10-year
Each man addressed the court before
“I feel badly about all this,” Durham
told Magnus- Stinson. He said he was
surprised at the amount of money lost
by four victims who also spoke in court
“I wish I had tried harder to make
things clearer for them,” he said of
Fair Finance’s public disclosures.
[Maura Larkins comment: I believe
that the truth was intentionally
concealed from investors, just as
Sanford and Pavia did to me.
Sanford and Pavia claimed to have
only one form left, and that's why it
had a company already listed on it--a
company I told them I didn't want to
invest in. So they had me cross it
out and initial it. Then they wrote it
back in after they left my house.
They also concealed from me that
American Eagle investments would
not be available to me for many
Founded in 1934, Fair Finance
provided retailer liquidity by buying
receivables at a discount with money
raised through sales of interest-
Durham and Cochran acquired Fair
Finance through a holding company in
2002. By February 2005, Fair Finance
had shifted from providing commercial
financing to making loans to its
principals, their associates, Obsidian
and other entities they controlled,
according to the indictment.
His voice choked with emotion today,
Cochran told the judge he hadn’t
intended for “any of this to happen.”
He said he had grown up with people
like those who invested in the company
and that he understood the impact of
Snow said he was humiliated and
asked for leniency.
“This sentence is the longest white-
collar fraud sentence in Indiana
history,” Hogsett told reporters outside
the courthouse after Magnus-Stinson
set Durham’s punishment.
“Throughout these proceedings,
we all heard Tim Durham say his
failures were the fault of many
things -- the government, the
media and the nation’s economic
struggles,” the prosecutor said. “It
was Tim Durham and the selfish
destructive actions of people like
him that squandered America’s
economic strength. It was Tim
Durham, along with Rick Snow and
James Cochran who stole the
hopes and dreams of those
At trial, Durham defense attorney John
Tompkins had argued his client was
trying to prop up a faltering company
and had put $28 million of his own
money into it.
[Maura Larkins comment: Wait a
minute. He had $28 million and he
was so intent on getting more that
he took the life savings of people
like Barbara Lucasik?]
The lawyer returned to that theme in a
pre-sentence court filing in which he’d
attributed Fair Finance’s losses to the
U.S. financial downturn in 2008 and
2009 and negative press coverage
that reduced investor interest in the
A jury on June 20 found Durham guilty
of all 10 counts of wire fraud and one
count of securities fraud, each
punishable by as long as 20 years in
prison, and one count of conspiring to
commit those crimes. Jurors
deliberated for less than a day after a
Cochran was found guilty of eight
counts and Snow was convicted on
five. The jury found all three men guilty
of wire fraud as well as the lone
securities fraud count and the charge
of conspiring to commit each of those
Four victims of Fair Finance
addressed the court before the
sentences were imposed.
One, retired nun Barbara Lukacik, 74,
of Akron, told the judge she invested
$125,000 with Fair and lost it all. She
said she avoids taking public
assistance by caring for children.
“You probably felt you were above the
law,” Lukacik said to the defendants.
“Shame on you.”
Durham, a Republican Party
fundraiser, resigned from National
Lampoon in January. The Los Angeles-
based media company wasn’t named
in the government’s charging
The case is U.S. v. Durham, 11-cr-
00042, U.S. District Court, Southern
District of Indiana (Indianapolis).
To contact the reporters on this story:
Andrew Harris in Chicago at
Smulevitz in Indianapolis at
|News, information and ideas about our
education system, courts and health care
by Maura Larkins