Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Firm Charged by SEC Appointed New President 2 Weeks Before $19 Million Stimulus Award 08/24/2010 San Francisco - TierOne Converged Networks, Inc., the Dallas wireless firm charged by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) with securities violations in April, appointed a new company president on August 2, 15 days before being awarded $19 million in broadband stimulus funds by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).  

In a press release issued on Friday, August 20, TierOne announced that Minnesota investor Glen Harstad was appointed the new President of the firm, a Wireless Internet Service Provider (WISP) headquartered in Dallas and incorporated in Nevada.  The company statement says the firm "named Glen Harstad to replace Kevin Weaver in the role of President effective August 2, 2010.  Mr. Harstad also joined the board of directors and committed additional capital to support TierOne's aggressive growth strategy."  

A day previous to the company announcement, on August 19, we reported that TierOne had been charged in April with violations of federal securities law, and that state securities regulators in Colorado and Texas had issued cease and desist orders against the firm in 2009 and 2008, respectively.  The 3 regulatory agencies focused their allegations, charges, and orders on the alleged activities of Mr. Weaver, identified by the SEC as the firm's CEO, and on Mr. Ronald Celmer, identified by the federal Commission as CFO. 

Two days previous to our story on the SEC action, the firm had been awarded $19.224 million in broadband stimulus funds by the Rural Utilities Service (RUS) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.  The the RUS grant - loan package issued to TierOne was 1 of a total of 94 awards  announced on August 17 by Vice President Joe Biden.   

As of the publication of this story, the online information filed with the Nevada Secretary of State by the company does not reflect the appointment of Mr. Harstad as President, nor that he "also joined the board of directors" as reported in the company's release of last week.  In the online data from the Nevada agency, Mr. Weaver is still listed as company President as of this posting.  We have not determined the potential or typical lag times, if any, between the date of  information filing with the State of Nevada and its appearance online, nor the legal requirements for the disclosure new corporate directors or officers.  

Two telephone calls and an email of Monday, August 23, to Mr. Weaver were not answered or returned, as we sought to clarify both the time sequence of the appointment of Mr. Harstad in relation to the RUS vetting process of TierOne's funding application, and the information available online from the State of Nevada.  We did briefly speak with Mr. Celmer who told us that although he was not authorized to speak on behalf of the firm, that "Mr. Weaver remains with the company," and that a "PR firm" recently retained by the service provider would speak with us as quickly as possible.

TierOne Networks Appoints Glen Harstad as President -
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