Chaos engulfs Operation Rebuild Hope

·3 min read

Jun. 22—Chaos has engulfed Operation Rebuild Hope, a North Bend nonprofit that works to provide housing to homeless veterans,

After a co-founder and executive director of the nonprofit, Patrick Wright, was arrested following an incident with Coos Bay police, the board of directors met June 16 and voted to ask Wright too voluntarily step down for 60 days.

Rather than comply, it appears Wright terminated several employees who also serve as board members, changed the locks at the organization's office to keep those employees out and is attempting to maintain control of the operation.

The conflict began when Wright was involved in an altercation at Front Street Provisioners near downtown Coos Bay when he attempted to stop a fight. The altercation escalated after police arrived, and officers took Wright into custody.

He was transported to the county jail on charges of assault IV, disorderly conduct II and resisting arrest before being released. As of June 20, no official charges have been filed by the district attorney's office.

According to information released to The World, the board of directors at Operation Rebuild Hope called an emergency board meeting June 16 to discuss the issue. According to the board documents, the organization had been contacted by members of the media. The board members also were concerned that if something was not done about Wright, Operation Rebuild Hope could be in danger of losing grants it needs to operate.

At the meeting, the board's attorney said it was in danger of losing "all" grant funding if nothing was done. The board then voted 7-0 with two members abstaining to ask Wright to step down for 60 days. In addition, Wright was asked to undergo counseling for alcohol and drug abuse as well as his own mental health.

According to the terms the board approved, during the 60 days he was supposed to be away from the organization, Wright would have no access to the agency's properties, work email, computers, cannot contact clients and must abstain from Operation Rebuild Hope's social media accounts.

In addition, he will be required to check in with the board bi-weekly, and cannot retaliate against any employee, clients or family members. Failure to comply with the terms will results in the immediate termination, the report reads.

But it appears Wright rejected the terms. A social media posting released on Operation Rebuild Hope's Facebook page Tuesday reads, "Operation Rebuild Hope is aware there are individuals currently acting as employees and on the behalf of ORH. These individuals have been terminated as of last week. Patrick Wright is the current executive director. Secondly, board members have been asked to adhere to their signed non disclosure agreement. Thirdly and most importantly, please know all grant funding is secure and above all so is the safety of our veteran clients."

Operation Rebuild Hope was started by Wright as a nonprofit helping homeless veterans find housing. Through the years, it has successfully found homes for dozens of veterans and provided services to many more.

ORH runs Bryan's Home, a short-term shelter for homeless veterans, and recently used a Project Turnkey grant to renovate a North Bend hotel into additional veteran's housing.

Ryan Cook was unanimously named the president of the board during an emergency meeting June 17.