Virginia Governor’s Chef Had More Secrets Than His Recipes

Nick Fishman

Virginia Governor Robert F. McDonnell learned why it is important to conduct background checks before you hire someone after it was discovered that his executive chef had been convicted of embezzlement before he was hired.

According to the Washington Post, “McDonnell’s staff failed to conduct the required criminal background check on Todd Schneider, who recently left his job amid a police investigation after a tip about possible wrongdoing at the mansion.”

When asked why the governor wasn’t aware of this, his office insisted that they conduct background checks on all employees but this one slipped through the cracks while the governor was making quick preparations to take office.

Time for a rant?

Trust me.  I considered it.  However, I thought this would be a better opportunity to educate employers on the necessity to ensure everyone undergoes a background check per company policy (some do it pre-hire, some post).

These days, everyone is rushing to get qualified people hired and get the them to work.  Unfortunately, things can slip through the cracks when that happens as it did with Governor McDonnell.

One other thing that I found interesting from the story is that the Post pointed out that the chef was in debt by hundreds of thousands of dollars.  This is particularly interesting coming from the media who have gone out of their way to slam employers for their use of credit reports (in fairness to the Washington Post, I don’t know if they’ve done this or not).

But as the EEOC continues to evaluate the role an individual’s credit plays in their eligibility for employment, perhaps this offers a snapshot of why it can be valuable in some cases.

Nick Fishman
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Nick Fishman

Nick Fishman is the co-founder of EmployeeScreenIQ, a leading, global employment background screening provider, and serves as the company’s executive vice president and chief marketing officer. He pioneered the creation of EmployeeScreen University, the #1 educational resource on employment background checks for human resources, security and risk management professionals. A recognized industry expert, Nick is a frequent author, presenter and contributor to the news media. Nick is also a licensed private investigator in the states of Ohio and Texas.
Nick Fishman
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