Relationship between Fox, Kalahari under ethics review

An Ohio Ethics Commission investigation of Huron Schools superintendent Fred Fox centers on his friendship with Kalahari Resorts owner Todd Nelson.
Jessica Cuffman
Jun 19, 2012


An Ohio Ethics Commission investigation of Huron Schools superintendent Fred Fox centers on his friendship with Kalahari Resorts owner Todd Nelson.

Fox and Nelson readily acknowledge the friendship and say they have no concerns about it affecting Kalahari’s business relationship with the school district.

Ohio Ethics Commission has been asked to determine if reduced rates Fox received on golf outings at the Wisconsin Dells Kalahari resort violate rules against public employees soliciting or accepting anything of value from parties they regulate or with whom they do business.

Kalahari, which is partially in Huron Township and partially in Perkins Township, has received several tax abatements to encourage its expansion and growth. Any abatement must be approved by voting officials from the school district and other local government entities.

Fox, as the district superintendent, doesn't have a vote on the school board.

On May 22, after a four-hour heated executive session, the board voted 3-2 to send the investigation to the Ohio Ethics Commission for review.

“I did nothing wrong,” Fox said. “This is an apparent smear of me, trying to undermine my ability to run this district. I’ve done nothing wrong. Mr. Nelson is a friend of mine. That’s all I can tell you.”

View documents related to the investigation below and for a more in-depth look at the issues in question, pick up a copy of Tuesday's Register.





So if the Ethics Commission finds that Fox had an unethical relationship with Kalahari, then does that mean eventually that Nelson could be charged with bribery of a public official?  Yikes!



A golf outing.  This is what the Huron School Board is so worried about?  This is basis of an investigation that they're spending tens of thousands of taxpayer dollars on?  Really?  Fox even says in the emails that they are willing to pay full price!  Better get ready to rip out the state-of-the-art football field that Kalahari paid for!  Unless there is more to the story, the school board members who voted to go through with this investigation are going to come out looking like morons.


Does this mean that you can't have friends if you hold a public office?


It means you better be sure you are doing EVERYTHING above boards! 

grannie G

who benifits in this friendship? EVERYONE! HURON and KALAHARI!!  Plus Fox and Nelson have a great friendship.That is sometHing MONEY can't buy.NOT EVEN a gulf outing


Perhaps this has more to do with things other than golf.  Maybe things Nelson and Fox don't want anyone to find out about.  Too late!


I think things like this are done all the time.  It is just that Fox got careless with the e-mails and got caught.  If no one catches on, nobody is the wiser for it. 


It seems like there is at least 1 member (probably 3--according to the vote to investigate) of the school board who has a  vendetta against Mr. Fox.  People like this don't belong on the school board because it could cost the district the great relationship it has with Kalahari.

Kalahari has been a great addition to the area, specifically Huron Schools, and continues to give back to the community.  Do you think Strobel Field or Perkins schhols would have received their donations from Cedar Point and Firelands Morgue (err, Hospital) if Kalahari didn't set the precedence?  I certainly don't. 

I think all members of the school board should immediately be forced to resign for being complete IDIOTS.

Natti Light

 That's what this is about?  Are you seriously going to tell me that we've reached a point where getting a good rate on a room/golf is enough to drag a school employee through the mud??  Well, then I guess I should get fired for getting an educator's discount from Apple and AT&T.

Sowecke should be thrown out on his rear end for starting all of this.  The man has been, and always will be, a complete idiot.  Every time he opens his mouth, he proves my statement.  Perhaps he should try to keep his overpriced hardware store from going bankrupt.  If I had the resources, I'd open a Home Depot right next door just to put him out of business.

How much did this cost the taxpayers of Huron again???


This is really about discounted golf? Leave the guy alone. 


Jane Goodall

Moderators have removed this comment because it contained personal attacks. Discussion Guidelines

Jane Goodall

Moderators have removed this comment because it contained personal attacks. Discussion Guidelines


Honestly..this is ridiculous.  How embarrassing that thousands of dollars are being wasted on this. Who cares if he got free golf and a deal on a room.  PULEEZ people..if this is all their is..this is truly pathetic.  What some people won't do to create drama.  Enough already.


Just Saying

What a waste of money this is going to be. If accepting discounted tickets or free tickets was against policy, why couldn't Mr. Fox be informed or reminded of correct protocol and had it made clear it was unpermissable in the future??  Hmmm, instead let's pay $10,000.00 for an arbitrator to go on a witch hunt. Obviously, the School Board decided this is a better idea !


The Board of Education has no choice but to investigate aligations of wrong doing and a third party investigator eliminates a witch hunt.  The money may be well spent . . . . it sends a clear message that being above board is the expectation no matter who you are. 

I'm just curious, if this were a teacher, janitor, or bus driver, would it be acceptable to use school equipment during school time to conduct private "business"?  I'm going to guess, this at minimum, is a violation of the district's Computer Use Agreement, which all employees sign. 

I will assume all of the rumors ( like girlfriends were involved) are just that ... rumors.  As a huron taxpayer, I have a few questions and concerns .... did the administrators who attended this getaway use vacation days or were they paid while they were golfing and drinking, was the BOE lead to believe this was a business trip, were district funds utilized for mileage or meals, etc.  What other personal business is conducted while "on the clock"?





I agree with Clementine.   My instincts are this is the just the tip of the iceberg.  


 Mr. Fox the school board does not have to smear you. They can fire you with a 3-2 margin and be within their legal rights.

A smear campaign is not necessary. But, nice attempt to spin the story to your advantage.

I'd be packing my bags if I were you.


fudge pies

Sure, he can also sue them!


"Mr. Fox the school board does not have to smear you. They can fire you with a 3-2 margin and be within their legal rights.

A smear campaign is not necessary. But, nice attempt to spin the story to your advantage.

I'd be packing my bags if I were you."



They can fire someone without just cause?  Just because three members of the school board don't like a person is justification for taking away his livlihood?  Hmm.  Those aren't the kind of people I want running a school district if so.  And if they do fire him without just cause, the school's lawyers better saddle up, because there'll be a lawsuit a-comin'!

Come on. You can’t just fire a Superintendent with a 3-2 vote. Look up this Appellate Court Decision and you will see what it takes. Joseph L. Bertolini, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. Whitehall City School District Board of Education, Defendant-Appellee. There must be repeated, documented gross job performance issues. If they try to fire Fox, he will take them to the cleaners in Court and they don't even know it.  
My thoughts

I think the fact he received discounted rooms and golf isn't the issue. It is that he received discounted rooms and golf and tried to help Kalahari get fees waived by Huron Township that may be the problem. Who were the other members of his golf party?

Darwin's choice

So, someone didn't get to go along on a golfing/drinking outing, and is throwing everyone under the bus?  You have got to be kidding me !  You fools need to go !    It's obvious the agenda of these board members!



If it was the agenda of the school board to relieve Mr. Fox of his job than all they would have to do is vote.

I'm not sure it's that obvious. Maybe in your mind.


Agree with all. In total this is going to cost the School District at least $30,000 – investigation plus their internal attorney and other costs. Nelson has done nothing but help the District with huge donations that WERE asked for by guess who.  No not Mr. Hardware but the guy pulling his strings. Fred Fox has done a super job. Academics the best in the area for 3 straight years, excess carry over cash, fiscal responsibility, and super improvements to all buildings. “You ain’t seen nothing yet.” Wait until the teachers’ contract is up. My bets are there will be a strike in Huron or maybe this cowboy will be out by then.  Bottom-line is that he is there to settle a vendetta. Just look back over your shoulder to Berlin/Milan a few years back and remember who is pulling the strings. Fred did his job and we are very proud that he did.  The Ethics Committee will clear him. They don’t investigate golf outings.  My bets are that Mr. Nelson will not let this one go. Too bad for Huron.  There is a third vote that can stop all of this and he is an intelligent guy but unfortunately does not have the back bone to stand up to Mr. Hardware. Go figure. Vigilante law, just like the Wild West.


 What's $30,000?  Fox spent more than that eight years ago on attorney's and administrators he paid to follow teachers that were union leaders around in an attempt to get rid of them. Heck, when he went after the union vp in 2004 with false accusations, a false ethics violation, and ordered low evaluations from his administrators on the teacher just a year or so after the teacher had been nominated for Disney's Teacher of the Year, he not only had to spend the schools money on attorney's to clean his mess up; he paid at least an additional $30,000 to that teacher via salary and a year's insurance just to get that teacher to go away and drop the charges against him.  That was 8 year's ago.  Just think of all he's gotten away with since.  How ethical is that?  The board is merely using Fox's techniques against him.  What goes around comes around. It is about time.

As for, "Academics the best in the area for 3 straight years, excess carry over cash, fiscal responsibility, and super improvements to all buildings."  Are you kidding me?  Same old Huron elitist mentality.  It doesn't matter what you do or how you get there.  As long as Huron looks good, you could have Al Capone running the district.


fudge pies

As MR Asher said in the audio weeks ago. THIS IS ABSOLUTELY REDICULOUS!  and I now fully agree.


Julie R.

This is totally different then the rumors that are going around.


Reduced golf rates at the Wisconsin Dells Kalahari this what our school board is worried aboutspending money and valuable Board time on???  You got to be kidding !!! . What was it $10, $50 maybe more and the school board is spending thousands $$$$ to hire an attorney. Maybe we should investigate the school board and see if they have any connections to this school hired attorney. Maybe they are getting some special favors from this guy for the business pushed his way. While everyone is investigating everyone let's get the school board members into being investigated.

These school board members some of which we know full well have an agenda fail to realize good hardworking taxpayers have in many cases scrapped to pay these school taxes. Here they come along and wildly spend for ridiculous causes like this. Money that should be spent on the education of children is being spent on as most of the town now knows (and I love his new name is being called in town) Mr Hardware's agenda. This guy came with an agenda and in his 6 months on the Board he has it now split, Board members are at each other's throats and pretty who Board is pretty much in semi chaos . Really Mr Hardward is this what you feel your legacy is for the Huron City Schools? Better clean up the act and start doing the job of a school board member or those of us who supported you will no longer. Huron has a track record of turning out under achieving Board members.

Before these $1000 were spent to make an attorney much more wealthy did anyone think to just ask Mr Fox if he would pay the $$$ he got discounted to Kalahari in Wisconsin Dells.  I think if you asked the citizens in town you would have the money donated quickly. How nice that would have been we could have cleared up this mess and moved along to the more important business of educating children with limited state and local tax dollars.

I was not a particular fan of Mr Fox when he first started but I feel he has gained experience and changed some irritating ways. He has moved HCS forward together with staff and not inspite of them. For those reasons I will support him on this one. 

Phil Packer

 So much for the school system being about the students. It's all about the big kids, isn't it...


This situation may be small now but could get bigger later on if let go.  It needs to be dealt with harshly and that is why we have a a code of ethics to live by.  There cannot be any gray area when it comes to ethics no matter how minor.  If anyone needs a reminder,  just take a look at Cuyahoga County and what happened over there.  The little ethics grew and grew until it had a whole corruption ring of people involved from the city, county, and even judges and that is how it all gets started.   If no one addresses the inappropriate conduct, people think they can continue doing unethical things.


You are right and have a valid point but I don't think any of this has risen tothe  Cuyahoga County corruption level. There is a point to correcting a wrong but this can go to the level of the ridiculous too. It's the old story of going after a fly in the room with a sledge hammer vs a fly swatter. In the end you get the fly either way but using the sledge hammer the room can be left in utter disaster. It that the end result you really want?

There is another old saying "that folks who live in glass houses should not throw stones." I think there are school board members whonow  have raised the level of watching extremely high and each and every one of the school board member is now under that same microscope.




old dog

I wonder if business at Mr. Hardware's store is showing the town's support? He has screwed over more than one person in this town. Bad karma will bite you.


 " Just cause" is such a "gray" area.  It's not that difficult.  If three members of the school board don't like you because they feel you are difficult to work with then that's all they need.

If any wrong doing is noted by the ethics committee than that's "just cause".  Sounds like the board is setting up the ethics committee as the bad guy.  

I personally like Fred Fox.  All my dealings with the man have been pleasant and above board. Nice family.

But, Mr. Fox works at the pleasure of the school board.  Three member against you with a ethics investigation does not look good down the road for Mr. Fox.

I know if I worked in a service industry I would never be on a school board. Every decision "Mr. Hardware" makes causes an increase and decrease in business. The public if fickle and will always be. Not sure I would want my livelyhood based on school board decisons.




Re: state public employees

What's up with that Jessica?

Are you implying Mr Fox is a State Employee?



If the school board has that same attorney from LORAIN, OHIO; I can tell you he is acrook...somebody should burn his aise.........first of all he hates educators ;that is why he always sits on the side of the school boards........personal experience!



Not wanting to support right wing ideas and goals, I quit going into all "Donut Shops".




Darn, I wanted to sit down with you over a cup of coffee and have a political discussion. Always interested in hearing all sides and having a lively debate. 

Please excuse donutshopwannabe. Still in training.  LOL


Kimo and donutshopguy - come on give me a break.  I'm a babe in diapers trying to learn from the pro's.  LOL.  I don't know if you have ever observed but Mr. Hardware's pricing is high and much of his product is from China.  From what I here around town, the masses are slowly moving away from ACE.  There are ways to check out his business and I have.  I think he is hanging on by a string. Some have even told me you can get better stuff at Drug Mart. He considers himself a "successful businessman" but I would have to see his Income Statement and Returns before I would make that judgment.  We know he unsuccessfully started the original Hometown News and bilked many people out of big bucks. I don't know all the detail here.  Can anyone expound on this?  Just think, if that female that was running against him, forgot her name, who only lost by 70 votes would have gotten in - we would have none of this.  We would be doing what a School Board is supposed to do -- continually work on improving the School District.

In addition to all the Fox stuff, I'm assuming that the motion that was tabled in the last meeting regarding Mr. Hardware being a volunteer football coach will be back on the agenda tonight.  He must abstain so this will be a 2-2 vote.  Which means he cannot coach.  I guarantee you he will not take this lightly nor will the string puller.  So now expect some kind of rebuff here.  Isn't this a great way to run the Distr


Is the BOE meeting open to the public tonight?  If so, go and make your opinion known!



Board meetings are always open to the public.  It would be fun to see more than a couple people there.

Let your thoughts be known.

Sold On Fox 2

You are killing me !

I count seven points you made in this last post which all make sense and should certainly be taken into consideration when reviewing what is going on in the Huron School District that was running so well that someone, (Mr. Hardware), had to actually SEARCH for a problem.

Imagine that 'Mr. Hardware' would be in the running to become a volunteer FOOTBALL coach. Who requested this ? Who wanted 'Mr. Hardware' to be a coach ?

 'We would be doing what a School Board is supposed to do -- continually work to improving the School District'

Possibly the volunteer FOOTBALL coaching position is where 'Mr. Hardware' actually belongs instead of his current position of 'CHAOS' on the Huron Board of Education ?

This is a key phrase, WannaBe. A school board's only function is to provide a school district with a competent superintendent and treasurer and then to watch as these 'professionals' do their jobs. If this current Huron Board of Education is spending all of their time studying Fred Fox's golf game and friendships and also distracting Fred Fox and other school employees.. who is worrying about improving the Huron School District ?

And.. Who will take the Huron Superintendent's job when Fred Fox leaves to go somewhere functional where his work will be appreciated ? No one in their right mind would want to work with this Board's chaos. Is this board worried that they have caused a situation where they are going to end up with a superintendent who just can't get a job anywhere else ?

I don't believe this current Huron Board of Education has thought this thing through. The bully, puppet Board member who wants to coach football has orchestrated a situation that will be felt for years like the tsunami that it is.

Seems to me that 'Mr. Hardware' is trying to run the Huron City Schools like he's run his own businesses ?






 Sold on Fox 2,

"Mr. Hardware" is a current volunteer football coach. Just to clarify.

Sold On Fox 2


Apparently from WannaBe's comment 'Mr Hardware' is not 'officially' a volunteer coach at this point. The Board of Ed actually votes on all coaching positions, including volunteers.

They usually do it as a slate. The whole list at once. A Board member can ask to do each one seperately.

I believe this is what is going to happen.

Board meetings are sometimes boring. I've been to hundreds. I think the one tonight will be filled with Fred Fox supporters, but the Board will not discuss Fred Fox so the supporters will not be 'allowed' to speak.

It's the Board's meeting and if they allow comments.. they allow comments. If they don't.. They don't.

The vote on 'Mr. Hardware' as a volunteer FOOTBALL coach should be the highlight of tonight's meeting.


 It's just symantics. He is a coach now but must get renewed every year. It really doesn't matter.


Donutshopguy - yes it is semantics but tonight the vote will be 2-2, and he will NOT be a coach this year!   Remember, he must abstain. That will get many upset but also make many of the kids happy.  The kids hate him because he bullies them just like he does the Board. 

Clementine -- they WERE  vacation days and they paid all out of their own pockets.  They have receipts!  The real travesty here is that Mr. Fox and his attorney do not have a copy of the investigation so they cannot actually see all the allegations.  If the Ethics Committee does investigate - they will bring in their own team and do there own investigation.  They will be looking for evidence and facts -- not HEARSAY.  I believe that after they do their preliminary, they will drop it and not do the investigation.  But if they do -- the good news is that FOX will get to see all the investigation results prior to the hearing to defend himself.  So he will get due process, not vigilante law.  That is good.

Bottom-line -- drop it all and get back to working on the School District.  

Also, if this was as serious as some think it is, why did they not suspend Fox with pay or without pay while the investigation is completed.  That is what is normally done if the matter is considered serious



If you are involved in the school board or city council these so called "agendas" happen all the time and have for years. And, I mean a 100 years.

Step into the ring of politics. Yep, school boards everywhere are full of politics. 

Most people are niave to what happens in public meetings and behind closed doors.

Mr. Fox is playing politics with his "smear campaign" spin on the subject.  It gets hard to filter out the truth sometimes.

Sold On Fox 2

This is what the whole HUGE investigation is about..

Huron School Board members spent all of this time 'behind closed doors'..

Huron School Board members will be responsible for spending all of this time, effort and taxpayer's dollars to reprimand Fred Fox for having a 'team building' golf outing with his administrators.. (that, oh by the way, they all paid for out of their own pockets and it cost the district nothing.)..

The biggest question here is who is pulling the strings of the puppet 'bully' board member, referred to here in other comments as, 'Mr. Hardware' ?

No one has benefited more, by the friendship / working relationship of Fred Fox and Todd Nelson, than the Huron taxpayers who once again can say they have the best. This relationship has resulted in more benefits to taxpayers than the 'friendship' between ‘Mr. Hardware’ and the puppet master.

In fact.. if we look at it this way:
Fred Fox and Todd Nelson = $$$$ for Huron;
‘Mr. Hardware’ and his friends = Cost Huron $$$$

Even the few out there who thought the Board needed to make sure Fred Fox was doing his job can understand this. Fred Fox has obvious results. The Board's results speak for themselves and apparently this Board of Ed doesn't feel it gets enough credit, because they didn't even hire Fred Fox.

This issue is simple. Fred Fox, not in his official capacity of Huron School's Superintendent, but as Fred Fox, CITIZEN.. Went golfing with friends, aka other administrators. Possibly.. he and his friends got a decent rate on their golf and their rooms because Fred Fox, CITIZEN, actually has a great working relationship / friendship with the owner of the resort. Is this really a problem warranting the expenditure of approximately $30,000 of Huron's taxpayer dollars ? If Fred Fox had used Kayak or Priceline and got a deal would that have been a problem ? Could it be that 'Mr. Hardware's Board' simply have a secret agenda to 'smear' Fred Fox ? At what length will 'Mr. Hardware's Board' go ?

What exactly is out of reach for this Board of Ed who, by the way make, I believe, $140 every time they meet to discuss Fred Fox's golf habits.. What exactly is the limit ?

There's one thing I have to know.. Is Fred Fox getting free electricity for his house because of that windmill behind Woodlands School ?


For those of you who are prematurely believing Mr. Fox has done nothing wrong, you need to take the blinders off.  Let the ethics committee complete their investigation and make their decisions.

Hopefully they will look into whether Mr. Fox and his administrators took vacation days when they went to Kalahari.  Hopefully they will look into whether school funds were used for this golf outing get away.  Also, what is the treasurer's role in all of this.  Is that why he was so adamant about not referring this on to the ethics board?  What is his role? 

Talking about drinking, guys having a good time, etc., with Mr. Nelson on school email could also be inappropriate.  Teachers get in trouble for these things because of computer use agreements, and it applies to all people with school accounts.  In fact, not so sure the 8 guys is not code for 4 guys and 4 gals.  Too many people from within are talking and probably glad to because of the way they have been treated by the "good old boys club". 

Forget about solving this at a donut shop.  The only reason Asher and Caporini voted to "ignore" was to try and save the Huron name.  Instead of doing the right thing, they chose to ignore as is done so frequently in Huron.  It's time for everyone in this town to take off the blinders.

Stop boasting about academics.  Huron's academics should be much higher than surrounding districts.  It's like comparing apples to carrots.  Again, take off the blinders.



All school board member have some type of agenda. If I remember correctly Mr. Caporini conviently ran for the school board when his brother the basketball coach was under fire. After his election the fire was doused. Strange how that happened.

Sold On Fox 2


Well said. The Ethics Committee will find that Fred Fox and the other administrators paid for their ways on the golf outing. No school funds were used. They do have vacation days !

I'm not certain if the treasurer went on the outing or not ?

I agree that the use of 'school' email can be innappropriate, but when discussing an outing for administrators what is permissable ? Could this be a simple case of people not understanding 'team building' ? Can 'team building' happen on a golf outing ? Apparently because just about every business in this world uses the golf course to 'work'..

I don't believe Asher and Caporini voted to 'ignore'.. I, (notice I said I), believe that their vote reflected a beleif that this whole investigation is a waste of time and taxpayer dollars.

We shall see. Like you said.. Let the Ethics Committee do their jobs.. and then.. let them take a look at what is really going on !

Mom of 2 boys

 "Stop boasting about academics.  Huron's academics should be much higher than surrounding districts.  It's like comparing apples to carrots. "   

Wow, if this is how people from Huron think, I'm glad my kids don't go there. Unless I am totally misunderstanding what your point could be, that sounds just like what Huron sweats in the surrounding area....snobbishness. So glad I don't have to deal with the likes of you. 

I think everyone needs to take off the blinders. ALL of the schools in Ohio are struggling with one thing or another. Levies being passed, new buiding vs. old building, teacher pay freezes. 

Unless something bigger comes from this investigation, I think the school bosard  may have picked the wrong battle at the price of their kids!!


Really -  Kalahari has donated mega bucks to build a first class stadium at Huron, they are the largest single taxpayer to Huron Schools, the Superintendent should be doing everything he can to keep the support of this company (and owner) that have given back so much to the Huron Schools.

Mr Fox has no vote on any issues involving Kalahari.  Kudos to Mr Fox for recognizing the contributions of this company (and owner) and developing a lasting relationship with the owner that will only benefit the Huron School System in the future.  Accepting an invitation to play golf is part of this, declining the invitation would only be a "slap in the face" to the owner.

If I recall, Huron Schools are rated "EXCELLENT" by the State of Ohio.  Thanks Mr Fox from a taxpayer of Huron Schools.  Shame on the short cited school board with personal agendas.

On a national note:  Obama has just completed his 100th round of golf as President but nobody seems to care?   A new record for a President in office.

Sold On Fox 2

Blackjack82 -
You are right on the 'money' !

This IS THE WAY business is done in the 'real' world. I am so glad to read where someone actually appreciates what Kalahari is doing for Huron's property owners and taxpayers. Some apparently do not understand the corelation between industry paying more taxes so homeowners pay less. Obviously you do !

Great post !

DonutShop -
You may be right about those agendas. I remember two board members wanted to get rid of another coach.. and everyone knew what the coach was doing with another teacher..

I have a theory from reading your posts that you are looking at this situation in a very practical way. I appreciate the way you have summed up that all politicians have an agenda. My hope is that at least a 'majority' of school board members have making better schools for students and school employees on their agendas.


Fred Fox is a real nice fellow until you challenge anything he says.


 It seems to me that one of the biggest benefactors of Kalahari's generosity is the football program, run by the supposed puppet master. Please explain why he would try to screw that up?

the office cat

What IS the name of the Huron Tigers football field?

Sold On Fox 2


This goes back way before the football field. Some people hold a grudge. Some of those people plot and scheme and eventually see their opportunity to right the supposid wrong.

Let me tell you a story:

A former board of ed member and his realtor wife convinced a property owner who had the property just west of the field, (that is now the football teams practice field), to donate his property to the school so that the football team's practice field would be next to their locker rooms and they wouldn't have to share it with jr high and the soccer team. The donated property was then cleared of trees so the football practice field could be put in place. The tree clearing company cleared 13 trees that were not on the school's property. The people in the neighborhood attacked the property owner, the board member, the realtor wife and the school system in general for the loss of trees, even though other trees had been planted to replace the old almost dead trees.

The 'puppet master' was mad because he wasn't in on the planning of this move and he was afraid of losing 'his' territory, (the field behind McCormick School and it's locker rooms). Not once.. did the 'puppet master' step up to calm the property owners, nor did he ever say thank you to any of the people involved in making 'his team's' situation better. Not even the property owner who donated the property and was then sorry he did.

This is who we are talking about.


im sure people really complained about trees being cut down in the bike path......

Sold On Fox 2


It was headline news in the Register.

And... it was at the other end, (southwest), of the field. I have no reason to change the facts.


I'm somewhat of an outsider looking in.  My Mom grew up in Huron and Grandparents lived in Old Homestead II.  I have lived in Cuyahoga County for a while now...This can somewhat be compared to what has happened in Cuyahoga County politics but obviously on a much much smaller scale.  My question is this...What would the taxpayers of Huron do or say if in a few years down the road it was found out that the Super was rec'ing inproper benefits from Nelson/Kalahari Resorts or from whomever and the school board knew about it but did nothing?  What happens if/when the friendship between the Super & Nelson goes sour? Would tax payers say that at the least an investigation was warrented?  I understand that more than likely any benefits the Super has rec'd to date are minor but in todays world of corruption are we as taxpayers willing to take the benefit of the doubt?  Kickbacks typically start off small and build with time.  Is a Board of Education willing to ignore a hint of corruption in todays world?  I understand Kalahari has helped create something any school district would be extreamly proud of but would it be worth it if it meant corruption was at its core? 


donutshopwannabe how did you find out about "mr. hardware's" business? I do not believe you would have access to his are a moron.  I am sure he does not make a killing there but he's been in business for quite some time.  Actually it is a great place to go for little things.  Think before you speak.  "Mr. Hardware" is actually a very nice guy.  Regardless of anything going on with the BOE and fox.  I will continue to buy stuff from ACE.  

Julie R.

As far back as I can remember Huron was always known as 'little Italy' --- cops were all Italians, the judges were Italians, etc., etc. Now that little Italy is no longer, Huron is STILL having problems.  

grizzly2504 you have any idea what you are talking about?  really......the kids will be happy he is gone? you really dont know him or anything about the football program.  he is a great man and dedicates a lot of time to those kids.  again you really dont know much of anything that goes on in huron.



Why is this even news?.  Someone is friends with someone else.  No one paid public money to anyone.  No contracts using school money or public money between Kalahari and Fox were in the discussion.  Private friends are private.  When you take a public job you should not have to worry about an investigation into your private life.

Sold On Fox 2

Well said FlowerMom !

Why is this even news?. Someone is friends with someone else. No one paid public money to anyone. No contracts using school money or public money between Kalahari and Fox were in the discussion. Private friends are private. When you take a public job you should not have to worry about an investigation into your private life.


When the ethics commission finds nothing improper what do we do next ?

Tsu Dho Nimh

Mr. Fox and his email history is the reason for the investigation.  He used his work email account to arrange the golf outing with Kalahari.  He refers to the participants as administrators, not as friends.  Team building is part of any business by why did they need to go to Wisconsin?  And why to Kalahari?  I would think a man with Fox's education level would be smarter than this.  Here is a tip Mr. Fox: in the future, conduct personal business on your personal time, with your personal email and refer to your buddies as friends. Oh, and leave the drinking part out.  People might just get a little suspicious and critical.  Just sayin'.



Grizzly -

1) The trees had to be replanted.

2) Although Mr Hardware's business is private - you can find out his revenue from the web and then do the math.  Marginal at best.  Many, many have stopped going there.  Why?  Price is high, china products and what is currently going on in the area.  They have more China products than Menards.  Again, you measure the success of a business by the income statement and returns.

How successful was this businessman when he opened and closed the Hometown News in two weeks and took a bunch to the cleaners.  Returned nothing.  Many are still PO'ed about that.  Go ahead -- defend that.

I guarantee you there will be more on this.

3) And yes -- the kids don't like him.  Why would anyone?  He's disruptive to his neighborhood and to the environment where his successful business is (even though he rents).


well then please provide the income statements of his private. not public. also, i have a feeling you are not around the football program very much. the kids do like them. hes a great coach.thats why he has been there for the last 5 yrs or so.  i dont know the hometown news story but the last time i checked they still throw their papers on my front lawn at which time i promptly throw them out.

fudge pies
Tsu Dho Nimh says

Mr. Fox and his email history is the reason for the investigation. He used his work email account to arrange the golf outing with Kalahari. He refers to the participants as administrators, not as friends. Team building is part of any business by why did they need to go to Wisconsin? And why to Kalahari? I would think a man with Fox's education level would be smarter than this. Here is a tip Mr. Fox: in the future, conduct personal business on your personal time, with your personal email and refer to your buddies as friends. Oh, and leave the drinking part out. People might just get a little suspicious and critical. Just sayin'.





Tsu Dho Nimh

Look at his emails. He was using his school email account.

fudge pies

There isnt a law about fielding personal emails on a school email listing. Are you Saying if i send him an email that i had extra pair of tickets to the indians , yankees game would you like to go?  That he isnt allowed to respond?   


Tsu Dho Nimh

Most districts have use agreements that prohibit the use of school technology for anything other than professional use.  How can an administrator discipline a teacher, paraprofessional, bus driver, custodian, etd. if the administrators do not abide by the policy?  I have had personal emails sent to my professional account and simply responded that the sender please contact me at my personal email. 

The point of my original post was that Mr. Fox used school email to contact a business (not a personal friend through personal email) in order to arrange a party trip (remember the drinking?) for his administrators.  Not all of the emails with Kalahari was with his good buddy but also with another employee.  It is really hard for me to believe that this was just one friend who who wanted to hang out with a group of guys at his buddy's resort.  Again, Mr. Fox should know better than to conduct this type of business using school equipment.  It does not look good to the taxpayer and he appears to think he is above the rules.

fudge pies

Again, there isnt any rule against doing such.  Agree it doesnt look to be in the best of interest.  But there isnt any rule against doing it.  IM still trying to find in any of this mess  where he crossed the line at?  Again. IF this is the only thing the ethlics code is looking into,  then I dont see  any wrong doings.  There is nothing there.


Mr. Fox may be a just a superintendent with no voting rights, BUT I would think he has a great deal of influence over the board members' votes.  I think what the Register is trying to do is bring awareness to appropriate ethics.  All the professional business people know what they need to be doing in the way of ethics.  They should not be playing dumb.  And, how many times does it have to be said not to use your business e-mail for personal use which is subject to public records.  The Ethics Committee doesn't make up these rules to have them disreguarded.  They are there for a reason, to protect the taxpayer.  



So this is what the Huron School board is all in a thither over?  OMG, are they all complete morons on that board?  Who gives a tinkers darn that the non voting member of the school board played golf with the people at Kalahari?  They got a new stadium out of it because Kalahari happens to be in PERKINS AND HURON your dummies. 

WHY is it that this board is out to "get" this guy?  Is it jelously or more?  These emails seem pretty straight forward.  The man offered to pay full price and they don't show much of anything else like the school board is alleging. 

The State Board is going to tap dance all over this school board when they see this.  If I were the school board members I would get ready for a real nasty thrashing from the State over this one.  RUN FOR THE HILLS you guys, quickly.  This is about as embarrassing a false accusation as you can get based on nothing but innuedo. You better have more than this to accuse him of.  From what you show here, you don't have it.  Wow, what a bunch of cry baby's and nit wits they have on that school board. 

concerned huron...

It seems that at least one board member is in violation of the Ohio School Board Assocations Code of Ethics in that he is there to promote his own agenda rather than the educational welfare of the children within the district, which should be a board member's first and foremost concern.

Maybe a campaign should be started to get the offending member to resign or be recalled.  He hasn't even been on the board a year, seems to be creating chaos and turmoil, wasting tax payers' money, and apparently has no regard for the lost future contributions from Kalahari.  Do we really want him to be on the board  until 2016?  If there were an ethics concern, shouldn't the Ethics Committee have been called in first to investigate for free rather than wastings thousands of dollars that should have been put to better use for such things as teacher training? 

I wonder where the funds will be coming from to pay for this?


 concerned huron,

If it's anything to do with's coming out of your pocket. Unless you don't pay property tax and then it's coming out of mine.

If you don't like a board member start a recall petition and get ready to pay for the cost of the special election.

concerned huron...

No special election required to fill board vacancy:


How will the board vacancies be filled?  Copied from link...

Under Ohio law, a single vacancy in a board of education is to be filled by a majority vote of the remaining members of the board. If the board fails to fill such a vacancy within a period of 30 days, the probate court of the county in which the school district is located is required to do so. In addition, a recent opinion of the

Ohio attorney general has held that one remaining board member cannot act to fill four vacancies on a board because the board lacks a quorum to act. The attorney general indicated that in that circumstance the probate court is to immediately have the responsibility of filling the vacant board positions. Similar reasoning is likely to be applied to a board left with two members after three vacancies have occurred.


Although unlikely, it may be more effective to boycott the store in the hopes of forcing a resignation from the board.


We had a choice this morning to either stop at Mr Hardware's establishment or drive over to Home Depot. We chose to drive to Sandusky and ended up at Lowe's and bought a little over $60 worth of items. Those items could have been bought right here in Huron but we did not given the current situation. We would have stopped at the the grocery store right next door but since we were at Lowe's we drove on over to Meijer. So from just our business today both Huron establishments lost our business.

My father who was a local businessman use to say "people vote with their feet" and today that is exactly what we did. Doing that once makes it a whole lot easier to do the next time and the next time after that. 



 Fred Fox and Todd Nelson were college roommates...  How many of us do not associate with our college friends...  YES, even go to their childrens weddings...  Come on people, get a life and concern yourself about World matters, not friendly family gatherings man...

just ice

 No they were not college roommates. They wouldn't know each other if it weren't for their business relationship.  What a fan club you have here.  I wonder what will happen when more of the story is revealed. 

Inside man

 We as teachers have been given special discounts to go to Kalahari with our families.  We've been given discounts for rooms that others have not.  Does that mean we've also broken laws?  I think Mr. Nelson is a very successful businessman and has been great to the Huron community.  He is a generous man by nature.  Every community he has business in has benefited from his ambition! We would be stupid as a community to let one man's agenda ruin the positive relationship between Kalahari and the Huron City school system.  Before reading today's article I truly thought Fred might have crossed a line. Total reversal in my mind.... We need to move on and keep putting our time and energy into our children.  I love Huron, love the school system I work for, and think the faster we put this to rest, the better it will be for our children.


OK inside man in other words all you people shut up or we are going to loose our special perks because we are teachers. Is there no end to the madness. School systems are out of control because you feel special and should be treated special. We care and love our kids more than you do. I teach them things every day. Where is my special discounts. discounts for me just raise taxes so i pay for your bennys. This is where you right back you should of been a public employee then

fudge pies

Jun 19, 2012

OK inside man in other words all you people shut up or we are going to loose our special perks because we are teachers. Is there no end to the madness. School systems are out of control because you feel special and should be treated special. We care and love our kids more than you do. I teach them things every day. Where is my special discounts. discounts for me just raise taxes so i pay for your bennys. This is where you right back you should of been a public employee then







How a teacher,administrator or supporter at a school spends their own money is up to them!  Your taxes is paying for education of the community in which you live.  Huron City Schools have a high standard for academic success.  That is a reflection on the teachers and staff of the school system.  They are doing a great job in the field of education, and if we can get them some perks for appreciation, then lets do it!  because they are special people.  Its not easy to educate a room of 25-30 kids.  Dealing wit different attitudes , different goals, and being YOUR baby sitter for a full day.


Your discount is when your kid is rewarded 500 dollar or more scholarship to attend college.  And move on to his / her college degree and get a solid job !  Thats your discount!

Inside man

I did not mean that at all.  I never asked for anything special.  Our superintendent wanted to thank us for our hard work.  I'm guessing he made the arrangements for the rooms which happened to be during a very slow time for Kalahari. Since we can't earn bonuses, etc. for good performance, it was a way to a say thank you and to create positive staff moral. It hasn't happened recently, was never expected, and to be honest I could care less if it happens again.  It was nice, but certainly not expected.  I'm not some 100% pro-Fred yes man. In fact, I didn't like the way he handled our financial crisis a few years back, don't like how he treats people when he'd cant easily get his way, and don't care for the nepotism in the district.  I don't have to like everything about a person to realize that there is a witch hunt where there is no witch.

By the way I never claimed to love your kids more than you. I also teach my children (who attend Huron) much that they couldn't possibly learn in school. I'm not sure what your point was with that.  I do know that I pour my heart and soul into my job and given the current system get no more or less than someone who sits back and pops dvd's in half the time. So what I'm saying is I recognize there are flaws with our education system.  Lets work to fix them instead of throwing insults at someone you don't have a clue about.

Finally, are you saying that you actually want to be paid or be rewarded by the Huron community for doing your job as a parent?  You are comparing apples to oranges. Teaching is my job. People in any job can be rewarded for a job well done. If we had more of that instead of a one size fits all approach to education, we'd vastly improve the system.  (Not an easy way to measure though...) Todd Nelson gave us a discount as teachers.  You too can get a break. As far as I know anyone can walk in the high school office and buy discounted tickets as part of the relationship Kalahari and Huron have.  


you seem to be unlike some other teachers i know. Just tired of hearing that if we dont go along with everything schools want.. ie levys we dont care about kids. i know some people inside some of the schools . The things that go on that cost so much money for so little worth to the kids. I guess i just have stopped trusting the school systems .I know a area principal that would like to make real changes but would be ran out if he tried.

bored reader

This whole ethics thing is getting attention at businesses. I think it was a large part from the Enron scandal. That helped bring about Sarbanes -Oxley which has just been a money maker for more gov't entities. At work, we have to take a course each year on ethics and pass a quiz. We can not accept gifts over a certain $$ value. It gives the impression that you may want to help award contracts or throw more business to a particular vendor. When you accept the gifts or even discounts you can become indebted to the giver even if that wasn't your intention. It just gets so ridiculous. Just do business and treat each other as you would want to have your business run. I don't see what the guy did so bad that it warrants all this fuss but I'm sure my employer would feel differently.


@ mom of 2 boys:  I was evidently not clear enough.  My intention was for the Huron people to stop boasting about their academics.  They cannot be compared to the surrounding districts because or their specific demographics.

Also, to compare what Huron teachers do to what teachers in the other Erie County districts do is like comparing apples to carrots (no comparison at all).

It is my understanding Kalahari offers these same discounts to teachers in other districts.  Perhaps Perkins and Edison should have gotten other perks like "carpet" for their schools since Kalahari property is in their districts also.

Business relationships aren't always without corruption.  Right, Guido!


smalltown - he's allowed to respond to the email, and he could take the tickets if they came from you, but not Todd Nelson.


smalltown did you read the article in the print edition, including the box describing what is an ethics violation?  Its not online.


@ small town:  I think you hit the nail on the head.  "IF this is the only thing".  I'm thinking it's not the only thing or the board members wouldn't be so concerned.. Just sayin'


It all boils down to: morals and ethics. The top administrator should be bound by both virtues. You should want that in a boss!

Azure Ray

 This whole thing is such a waste of time and effort.  Mr. Fox is a good guy, this is a small town, people who work with the public become friends with other people who work with the public, and many times those good friends play golf.  If this is what this area is worried about, I can see why some of the bigger issues are becoming worse and worse.  Fred Fox has done an excellent job with this district, and clearly this is a smear campaign on his reputation.  You people who are getting so wrapped up in this really make me sick.  It's time for us to worry about issues that really matter, instead of one that is easy to b**ch about.  If you call this "corruption," you are going to find it in every organization ranging from the federal government to the local grocery store down the road.  

Tiger Dad

 So how did the board meeting go?

Darwin's choice

3 to 2 vote............he's fired!!!!!!!!!!!!   we're going to need to get our wallets out.......

Natti Light

 You people actually think that board members have to be intelligent and rational people??  You put your faith in the board becuase the "must" make the right decisions..because, after all, "we voted them in"????

Board members don't have to know jack about running a school system.  In some cases, not all, running for school board is nothing more than a glorified popularity contest.  Tell me, what does Sowecke know about managing or running a school system?  Nothing.  Just because he graduated from high school doesn't mean he's qualified to run one.

Sowecke, Green, and Slocum voted to begin termination proceedings tonight at the BOE meeting.  Once they figured out they couldn't actually do that without a 4-1 vote, they voted to suspend Fred without pay...again...3-2.  There is NO WORD from the Ethics Commission...they just decided to do this on their own.

Do you have ANY idea how much this is going to cost Huron Schools?  If this is done, and Fred is cleared, I hope he takes them to the cleaners over this.  If someone did this to me, without standing, I wouldn't be happy until the last lightbulb in that place was turned out.  This is going to bring MAJOR lawsuits against Huron Schools.  All because the 'ol H Team isn't happy.  Huron Schools is rated Excellent with Distinction, in PART because of Fred Fox and his administration.  When is the last time the glory boys on the football team brought home anything other than another playoff loss?

Sowecke and Green THEN wanted to put a morality clause in the new principal's contract.  Public schools can't do that.  Didn't these idiots do their homework?  Or did they just think they could go in and wing it in this meeting???  It's a shame to see a great school system turn into a joke just because the voters didn't do THEIR homework when they elected these clowns.


 I wish they offered a "Like" button on here. I would have just clicked it for Natti Light's comment. 

concerned huron...

Ohio’s removal-from-office law

Ohio does not have a statute that permits voters to recall elected public officials. Instead it has a series of statutes (Ohio Revised Code (RC) Sections 3.07-3.10) that permit the removal from office of a public official for misconduct in office. RC 3.07 specifically provides that a public official, including a school board member “… who willfully and flagrantly exercises authority not authorized by law, refuses or willfully neglects to enforce the law or to perform any official duty imposed upon him by law, or is guilty of gross neglect of duty, gross immorality, drunkenness, misfeasance, malfeasance or nonfeasance is guilty of misconduct in office.”

Procedural steps to initiate a removal

RC 3.08 provides the procedure to initiate removal of a public official. It requires that petitions specifically setting forth the charge must be signed by qualified electors residing in the school district totaling 15% of the total vote cast for governor in the most recent election. If that number of signatures is obtained on petitions, the petitions are then filed in the court of common pleas. After notice to the public officials against whom the charges are filed, a hearing is held before the judge (or in some cases a jury) and the judge renders a decision as to whether the charges have been proved and whether they warrant removal of the individuals from public office.


Sold On Fox 2

Natti Lite ! You are so right ! (I'm looking for the 'Like' button, too !)..

This is completely chaotic and out of hand.. Just as Mr. Hardware wanted it to be.

This is a very sad day in the history of the Huron schools. Never have they had a more dynamic leader nor someone who really cares about Huron.

When Fred Fox is cleared I hope everyone is happy with the results of this Board's misdoings. I only can hope that enough people are fed up enough with what they are doing to really do something about it.

The sad part is that no matter what.. Fred Fox is gone. He can not possibly stay at the helm of the Huron City Schools.. The job he was raised to do.

There has never been this big of a mess created by a Huron Board of Education. Who would take Fred's job with this Board ? Who would vote for a school levy ? Who would move their kids to Huron ?

I asked Huron taxpayers / voters to wake up..  now it's too late.

concerned huron...

Assuming this is data we need to look at on Erie County Board of Elections site for Nov 2, 2010, Huron and Huron Twp have a total of 7,954 registered voters of which only 4,689 actually voted, (does not specify how many voted for governor, so will assume all 4,689 voted for governor), then only 703 signed petitions are required to initiate the recall of a school board member(s).  If we aim for 1,000 signed petitions then we should have more than enough to initiate the recall.  Wonder how much it would cost to file th petitions with the court of common pleas?

concerned huron...


Board Members and when their time is up if they don't get recalled first

JOHN J. CAPORINI   12/31/15


KEVIN ASHER  12/31/13

DONNA GREEN  12/31/13

SCOTT J. SLOCUM  12/31/13

H Team v The World

Let me get this straight… a volunteer football coach/board member does not get his way so he makes a motion to start termination proceedings?  Then, two other board members approved this motion?  One of the board members is a retired teacher who dedicated her career toward improving student achievement? 

School boards usually have one member who is a little crazy but for a former educator and another board member make a decision based upon a personal vendetta is reprehensible.

Decisions of this magnitude should be based upon student achievement or the poor financial standing of a school district.  That is not the case in Huron.  The football coach has all the power.  

I have seen this movie before and I do not like it.

fudge pies

i heard someone didnt get renewed as a football volunteer coach. 


let this be a lesson to all concerned.  when one is in the public eye, one's conduct must be above reproach and never trust anyone who first says 'trust me' without having earned the trust by their conduct being trustworthy no matter what!


Better start thinking of a new name for the football stadium, you just killed the Kalahari Cash Cow.

Can I succeed from Huron School District??


His Biggest Mistake was not inviting the board along to the Dells.....then you would have heard nuttin!


"...never trust anyone who first says 'trust me' without having earned the trust by their conduct being trustworthy no matter what!"

what is wrong with this sentence?  everything.

all this hoopla over a discount?  bunch of bs


Many comments are blasting personalities and individuals with premature and incomplete information so far released.  I for one want to see the process evolve.  I have great respect for our schools and our communitity.  I have a high expectation that the school board will do what is mandated, even if not popular.  The Ohio Revised Code is very specific.  The Ohio Department of Education also has very specific requirements concerning educators.  Obviously an investigation is necessary when significant charges have been made.  This is not the time to compare apples to oranges.  We're talking administrative actions relative to ethics and the Ohio Revised Code, not curriculum development or sports.  Success in one area does not, or should not, allow one to "look the other way" when other  issues are raised.  The State's involvement is never popular with some segments of our community when they desire to handle things internally, but there are occasions when it is in the best interests of our community.  Respect the process.  Mr. Fox has always understood when he become an educator that he must maintain compliance with the Ohio Revised Code and the State Department of Education. 

Tsu Dho Nimh

Well said, Candlemaker.


Another way to keep Huron in the 70's.


To qualify to become a member of a School Board, all you have to do is get is enough Hill Jacks, neighbors and groupies to vote for you.

To qualify to become a Superintendent, you need a Masters, a lot of EXPERIENCE, and go through a number of grueling interviews.

So, basically, any loser with an agenda can become a member of a school board and pretend they are of some importance.

I'm sorry for you, Mr. Fox, your a well educated professional, playing games with a bunch of wanna be rock stars.


P.S. How bad do you have to be, to be turned down, as a VOLUNTEER coach!? You want to volunteer your time and "talents" and they do not even want you, for free?!

Edwin Ison

 If many of you had a more complete knowledge of how Fox and his middle managers have dealt with school employees........ well, the tune y'all are singin' would be different :)

It is too funny that some of the tactics used by, are now used against!


I the same 'school administrators' who took him up on the offer to golf at Wisconsin Dells are probably the ones voting him out.  Are these other eight administrators next?


This wouldn't even be an issue had Mr. Fox, invitied these board members to the golf outing!!!


I hear we missed a Big Party in Buckeye Ln, Perkins. Maybe a Law Man's Family may be in trouble?

Sold On Fox 2

Support Fred Fox on Facebook !

Still Sold on Fox 3

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