BROOKLYN, N.Y. - The turmoil in leadership continues at the $1 billion Polish and Slavic FCU, headquartered in the Greenpoint neighborhood of Brooklyn. The credit union has been involved in a series of lawsuits over the past two years but had been able to reduce them from six to two until recently, when the wife of a current board member filed suit against the credit union for over $80 million. Bozena Kaminski, a former CU board member, president of PSFCU's parent organization, the Polish and Slavic center, and wife of sitting board member Andrew Kaminski, alleged in documents filed in federal court that the CU had harmed her by releasing reports of investigations into two mortgage loans that she and her husband took out from the CU in the mid-1990's. "The privileged and illegally disclosed information at issue herein," Kaminski claimed in her court documents, "especially as embodied in the Skadden Report, has been continually exploited to create an utterly false and misleading impression on the part of certain individuals" The Skadden report is one of the reports the credit union commissioned in the wake of the allegations about the loans. The documents, which are the subject of Kaminski's suit, appeared to have been leaked to a Polish-language reporter in 2002 and were ordered public by a judge in 2005 in a separate lawsuit. The credit union said that the board passed a resolution that Andrew Kaminski resign in the wake of his wife's litigation but that Kaminski refused to do so - and there is nothing in the standard FCU bylaws that says he would have to, according to NCUA. So, an organization called the Forum Organized To Protect Poles, a long-time Kaminski opponent and which is itself involved in litigation with the credit union, has begun to collect signatures on a petition for a special meeting at which Kaminski could be ousted. According to the FOPP, the organization has collected more than 300 signatures and does not plan to stop until it has well more than the 500 needed to call the meeting. Officially, the credit union will not comment on the petition drive, though sources close to the situation reported that the majority of board members favor the petition effort and hope it succeeds. Members contacted about the controversy stressed that they had not made up their mind yet but expressed a hope that the issue could be resolved and that their credit union would settle down again. "People get so energized about these things because in this community there is a very visceral connection with this institution," said one second-generation credit union member. "If someone comes over from Poland and doesn't speak any English, one of the first places they know to go is the Poles and Slavs," the member said who asked not to speak for the record. "People just feel this connection." No one from the CU would comment on the suit and Kaminski was not available. -email@example.com
Leadership Turmoil Continues at Polish and Slavic FCU
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