WRAL Investigates

Documents: N.C.'s former chief investment officer fired

Posted September 24, 2009

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— Public records obtained by WRAL News show North Carolina's former chief investment officer, Patricia Gerrick, was fired from her job.

The State Treasurer's Office gave her the chance to resign on Aug. 24. She declined on Sept. 4 and was fired the same day, documents show.

Citing personnel confidentiality, the Treasurer's Office gave no specific reason for her termination.

"In addition to other concerns, a review of various agency records supported my determination that separation of Ms. Gerrick was appropriate," State Treasurer Janet Cowell wrote in a memo.

WRAL and other media organizations filed a public records request to find out more.

On Thursday, the WRAL Investigates team began looking through more than 12,000 pages of documents, cell phone records and e-mails related to Gerrick.

Documents showed that Gerrick, at the time of her termination, repaid the state treasurer's office $3,045.80 for personal use of her state-issued cell phone.

The records also showed that investment firms doing business with the state's pension fund paid for Gerrick to travel all over the world to meet fund managers.

A spokeswoman with the Treasurer's Office said there was nothing unusual about the private reimbursements.

WRAL News couldn't reach Gerrick for comment.

At the time of her sudden dismissal, she was one of the highest paid state employees, with an annual salary of $340,000.

She received a hefty raise last summer after the General Assembly turned salary discretion in the State Treasurer's Office over to former Treasurer Richard Moore. He gave large raises to his top investment advisers.

Gerrick's salary doubled from nearly $167,900 a year to $340,000.

She first started working for the treasurer's office in 2004 and was in charge of investing the state's $60 billion pension fund.

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  • nanasix Sep 25, 2009

    If the readers think this is bad, wait until it breaks what the Sec of State is not doing with the Corporations Division. Our State is loosing hundreds of thousands of dollars in income due to the lack of work by her office. Some corporations go up to 14 yrs without filing and annual report with nothing being done, as is required by law, with the annual fees not being paid, again reducing state income. Why can't some of the high salaries given to state employees be reduced and our teachers put back in the classrooms where they're needed. What's happening in our state is wrong, and it's happening in more than one area of state government. Wonder what the trip to China for the governor and her croonies will cost the tax payers? This is a trip that should never have happened. Hey S.Carolina's Gov may have screwed around, but he didn't screw the citizens, like our lawmakers are doing.

  • Professor Sep 25, 2009

    Oh I hope she put some of that in the bank.

    Are you kidding? She stole that money and now will have to face the consequences. :) She needs to face her church too for her wrong doings.

  • Here kitty kitty Sep 25, 2009

    Oh I hope she put some of that in the bank. Looks like she might need it! Let the investigation begin!!!!!

  • Professor Sep 25, 2009

    She should have been fired and should have to pay all that money back. She knew right from wrong. Just thought she was getting away with it. 6 years in prison for the stealing.

  • firehog400 Sep 25, 2009

    You know, if I made $340,000.00 a year, I believe I could pay my cel phone bill and not have to count on someone else to do it.

  • countess Sep 25, 2009

    dogpatchnc....
    thanks for that link on the story from Indiana...I copied your post but forgot to list your name...

  • lizard Sep 25, 2009

    Wonder how much she'll get when she sues us?

  • lizard Sep 25, 2009

    Interesting article, countess. Thanks.

  • countess Sep 25, 2009

    Hey,Hey,

    Indiana, 2003: Ms. Gerrick was fired from a similar job in the Hoosier State.

    http://indianalawblog.com/archives/2005/08/ind_govt_perf_b.html

    I just read this article an am appaled that she was even hired in NC.. Who is watching the kettle around here???????

  • cameragirl Sep 25, 2009

    To the person who said that personal cell phone use on a State issued Cell phone is ok they are sadly mistaken. That is considered misuse of state property and yes, a person can get fired for it. If it is an emergency then you can make a call and reimburse the state, however that must have been some emergency since the bill was over $3,000. What did she do, call China? She was certainly making enough money to afford a personal cell phone. I too am wondering what is happening with the pension fund. Is the retirement fund in trouble? I would say that she probably needed to be fired. She was given a chance to resign and she did not take it. Now she has to suffer the consequences. If there wasn't reason to fire her then they wouldn't. She was probably in an exempt position that can be fired at will. Need to look at the statutes.

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