CEO Watch: Tony Strickland, Vice President of Phony Enterprises, LLC: Part 1

clarklee October 27, 2010 1

Strickland plays charades with voters and hides behind the guise of phony company

From the time he began his career in politics at age 24, Tony Strickland’s only business experience has been the business of politics.

In 2007, Ventura County voters cried foul when Strickland opted to list himself as an “Alternative Energy Executive” on the ballot for State Senate, a description environmental groups called “a complete scam,” a shallow attempt by a career politician to wear a businessman’s clothes. (Ventura County Star, April 23, 2008)

The description of “Executive” is even more farcical because public records reveal that Strickland has not reported receiving income from any company besides his own lobbying firm since 2007, the year he states he helped co-found GreenWave, LLC. (Statement of Economic Interest, California Fair Political Practices Commission, Schedule A-2, 2007-2010)

Despite running on his role as Vice President of an “alternative energy corporation,” when pushed, Strickland says his role in the company is merely “advisory” or “strategic.” Furthermore, none of the other employees appear to have any discernable job descriptions, either, beyond one employee listed as an engineer.

Upon closer inspection, this “engineer” is in fact a consultant who helps companies apply for applications such as the one GreenWave submitted to FERC, exactly the skill set Strickland and his friends needed to pull off their deception. (Bill Bustamante, Partner, Applications Development Ventures) The other three co-founders’ actual careers are as big shot lawyers and wealthy area real estate executives, some of whom have been aided by or donated to Strickland in the past.

The two listed “volunteer” staff members were actually chief of staff to Audra Strickland and campaign manager for Tony Strickland, both have been promised political favors. (Ventura County Star, April 23, 2008) The only recognition the company has received came in the form of an award from another regular donor, the United Chamber of Commerce, an organization with a clear interest in electing someone with Strickland’s extremist anti-tax policies, and one happy to provide political cover for Strickland’s tall tale enterprise.

“The truth is: Tony Strickland has never held a job outside of wheel-and-deal Sacramento politics, where he has consistently voted to support massive tax cuts for big businesses instead of protecting the jobs and paychecks of everyday workers. Can California trust someone with our state’s checkbook who cannot control his tendency to mislead voters? I think not,” said Eric C. Bauman, Chair of the Los Angeles County Democratic Party.


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