On Tuesday, July 26, 2022 the Board of Douglas County Commissioners reviewed the July 25, 2022 Report of Investigation Findings regarding certain allegations against Commissioner Lora Thomas. The report is privileged & confidential and will not be released publicly.
The investigation conducted by Sherman and Howard was productive and informative. In summary:
– The investigation was unable to determine if Commissioner Thomas was the author of an anonymous 2019 deputy letter sent to the Board of County Commissioners, but her writing of that letter could not actually be ruled out. The investigation did clearly find that Commissioner Thomas exploited that letter for political purposes. Specifically, she distributed that letter in order to advance her political campaign for Douglas County Sheriff.
-The investigation found that it was more likely than not that Commissioner Thomas did not create a hostile work environment or cause the discharge of a former employee.
– The investigation validated that Commissioner Thomas gave direction to contracted legal counsel contrary to a prior vote by the balance of the Board of County Commissioners, that then resulted in her relief as Chair of the Board of County Commissioners on April 26, 2022.
Following their review, the Board determined that their decision to remove Lora Thomas from her role as Chair of the Board was appropriate.
In response to the findings, Board Chair Abe Laydon stated: “Our valued citizens expect the county to govern, not be enmeshed in political sideshows which detract from our work. The results of this investigation support the decision to remove Lora Thomas as Chair while underscoring our need to focus this Board on public priorities, integrating professionalism, respect, and service into our Board governance. In doing so, we hold ourselves mutually accountable to each other and our constituents who gave us the high honor to serve them.”