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05/28/09 11:00 PM
CH2M HILL Among 2009 "World's Most Ethical Companies" Report this article as Inappropriate to us !!!Login to Reply

CH2M HILL Among 2009 "World's Most Ethical Companies"

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05/28/09 11:00 PM
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CH2M touts that it is against corruption and conflict of interests, but when it happens in its own backyard, it's a whole different story. Here are just two examples:
(1) Robert Card served as the US Department of Energy Undersecretary under GWB. In this position, Card maintained financial and personal ties to CH2M while overseeing its work as DOE Undersecretary. "Questions Raised Over Energy Dept. Official's Industry Ties," 6/6/02, NY Times. After protest by Senator Reid, Card resigned his position as DOE Undersecretary and immediately returned to CH2M as a board member and executive. Id.
(2) Especially disturbing is what happened to Colorado resident Tom Huntsinger and his family. When Tom Huntsinger, a long time CH2M employee and executive vice-president of CH2M, directed his staff in the Transportation Group of CH2M to withdraw its interest in a large Colorado transportation project due to a potential conflict of interest, CH2M proceeded to terminate Huntsinger's employment and blackball his career to the point where Huntsinger took his life. See Huntsinger v. E-470 Board of Directors, US Court of Appeals, D.C. No. 99-S-260. Ralph Peterson, CH2M's CEO and Chairman, was aware of the situation, although he attempted to deny any knowledge (but that didn't fly), and volleyed the responsibility for Huntsinger's removal and retaliatioin against him to CH2M legal counsel. Id. All the while, Peterson continues to position himself as a leader in anti-corruption efforts globally. Id.; See also 1 . Because of Colorado's high threshold for outrageous conduct, CH2M's actions were not found to be illegal by a Colorado court; however, leaders in the engineering industry found CH2M's actions to be highly unethical. Id.
It appears when it comes to winning work to feed the CH2M Hill corporate machine, CH2M Hill either simply doesn't know what a conflict of interest is or denies that a potential conflict of interest exists, and to the point of leaving dead bodies behind (as in Tom Huntsinger).

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