Many a Masonic jurisdiction has had its fair share of individuals choosing to reign with power and force rather than peace and harmony. This may also be a great example of why no one Grand Lodge holds copyright over our beloved Squared & Compass. The Power of Purple has proven that even Job’s Daughters International isn’t immune to the acts of the few power stricken.
Job’s Daughters International is a 501(c)(3) – religious organization created “to band together girls for spiritual and moral up building, to develop leadership, to seek knowledge, to teach love of God, love of Country, respect for its Flag, love of home and family, and reverence for the teachings of the Holy Scriptures.” (Revised Constitution and Bylaws of Job’s Daughters International, 2016)
OCCUPY JOB’S DAUGHTERS started on August 21st as a Facebook page with a tightly focused mission to seek change enabling the Daughters to have a larger role in the legislation and leadership of their organization. In 2014, during year end reports, both MIJD (Miss International Job’s Daughter) and SBHQ (Supreme Bethel Honored Queen) encouraged SGC (Supreme Guardian Council) to adopt changes which would give membership (daughters) a meaningful role in governance of JDI (Job’s Daughters International). MIJD cited DeMolay International’s structure as a framework to model. Two years have passed and daughters still do not have anything more than symbolic role in governing. At every Supreme Session the girls continually say they want to have more input in Constitution, Bylaws, Ritual and selection of the adult leadership. No youth have a vote in the legislation or leadership of the organization and strategic planning is done entirely by adults.
Occupy Job’s Daughters was simply going to be a voice for the girls. The page lacked administrators so the page sat without much activity until October 10th when a story was published about a lawsuit filed against a Majority Member, Past Grand Bethel Honored Queen from Washington, Heidi Yoast-Pink. After that happened, the page found some supporters who shared it to their friends and to some of the Job’s Daughters related Facebook groups. The page followers soared from single digits to triple digits.
Soon after news of this case broke the Job’s Daughters community messages began coming into Occupy Job’s Daughters regularly and people were disclosing bad experiences they and their family and friends had with leadership in the organization. Occupy Job’s Daughters began regular posts about change needed within the organization and even broke news on some injustices done at a great cost to youth protection.
Adults and Daughters are routinely removed without cause because they speak up, disagree or just get caught up on the wrong end of a political power in the JDI community. Adults are very territorial and want to be the only person in a state to be “in” with the Supreme Leadership team. When hard working volunteers start achieving success it threatens those seeking titles in the Supreme hierarchy. That seems to be when the unsuspecting adults get caught in the cross hairs and blind sided with some sort of action taken against them or the threat of an action.
Job’s Daughters has strict laws about disciplinary actions outlined in Job’s Daughters International Standard Operating Procedures SOP-SGC-1.
- Discipline of all types should be considered very carefully as the outcome and consequences will affect Daughters, adults, Bethels, Jurisdictional Guardians Councils, Grand Guardian Councils, the Supreme Guardian Council, and all those who become aware of the action.
(B) General Information
- The purpose of our Order is to teach. It is vital that conflicts be resolved with fairness and justice, making disciplinary action a last effort, used only after all other methods have failed.
- A Bethel Guardian, Grand Guardian, or the Supreme Guardian shall not delegate to anyone the responsibility of handling a grievance. However, the Supreme Guardian may appoint a Special Deputy to conduct an investigation for her.
- A complete investigation shall be made for each grievance received. In all matters, the following steps shall be included in the process:
(a) Discussion with the person(s) filing the grievance.
(b) Discussion with the person(s) the grievance is filed against.
(c) Discussion with any other individual(s) named in the grievance.
(d) Consideration on all statements given by those individuals interviewed should be given in the determination of resolution of the grievance.
- The right to appeal is lost if not initiated within sixty (60) days after the date of action or decision on the grievance.
- The decision of the Executive GGC or the Executive SGC is final. In the case of a tie, this final decision shall go to the SGC Appeals and Grievance Committee to determine the final decision.
- Appeals and Grievances and action on same are not reported to or acted upon at any Annual Session of a GGC or the SGC.
- Where charges are preferred or complaints made, such charges or complaints shall not be accepted unless they are specifically set forth in writing and signed by the person making the charges or complaints.
- Charges or complaints complying with item 7 above shall be investigated by a Bethel Guardian, Grand Guardian or the Supreme Guardian within thirty (30) days after she receives same. She shall expend her best efforts to adjust and settle the matter without necessity of further procedures.
Complete set of the Constitution and Bylaws can be found – https://jobsdaughters.files.wordpress.com/2016/07/2016-complete-set-of-bylaws.pdf
Yet, the ESGC (Executive Supreme Guardian Council) do not follow their own procedures and then have ultimate authority to uphold their decisions. There is no check and balance to the power placed with the ESGC. The bylaws even have a provision that the top officers can not be removed even by the Board of Trustees (BOT).
We have gotten several detailed reports including copies of letters and appeals packets filed showing adults who were removed without just cause and with no warning or discussion prior.
Just this year, the Grand Guardian in Missouri had her CAV (certified adult volunteer) status removed for a technicality on some appointments made to committees within Missouri. They indicated she appointed someone to a committee who was not a current CAV. This would be an easy mistake and should have been brought to her attention to correct. It was an unprecedented incident with no justification to remove her CAV status. This was only done as a power move in order to have her removed as Grand Guardian. This woman is a role model who has dedicated years towards this organization and this is a terrible blight to her reputation. This kind of action is severe and unjust. It is unknown whether the woman is going to appeal the action but it’s unlikely since the appeal process has little success.
In the same state, Missouri, they have a Bethel Guardian for Bethel 43 who is a Past Miss International Job’s Daughter from 2014-2015 who is unwed and pregnant. This seems to be ok and is not considered “conduct unbecoming of an adult”.
Occupy Job’s Daughters received evidence of two Hispanic adults in Arizona who were removed from their leadership positions without due cause. One occurred in 2013 and the other in 2016. The woman in 2013 filed an appeal and the chairperson for Appeals and Grievances indicated that all questions had been answered satisfactorily yet the action was upheld. Therein lies the flaw to the JDI grievance and appeals process. The Supreme Guardian Council appoints the committee. The committee reviews and investigates complaints but only has the power to recommend the course of action. Case in point referenced below.
An adult male from Arizona serving as Associate Bethel Guardian for 2 years received nothing but praise from the 2015-2016 Supreme Leadership team. He was internationally known in the Job’s Daughter community for his promotion efforts and had offered his services also to Supreme at no charge to assist in the overall marketing of the organization. Immediately after the current leadership took office they sent a letter to him that he was being removed from his position and not permitted to attend any activities for the period of one year. They cited a few reasons, (which he completely refuted) yet, nobody had ever spoken to the gentleman about any legitimate concerns. He appealed the decision in a large and detailed packet explaining that he didn’t do any of the things he was alleged to have done, he provided detailed evidence showing the facts. Contrary to him causing any issues he was growing Job’s Daughters in Arizona, and, in fact, internationally with his efforts. He also cited the fact that Supreme did not follow their own processes for a proper investigation of any allegations. They in fact conducted no investigation and only took the word of a couple people in Arizona who were jealous of the success that Bethel 19 had achieved. A typical case of the Arizona leaders wanting to be the only ones who are recognized for their work at the Supreme level.
After the 30 days allowed for Appeals and Grievances to decide he asked the Executive Manager of Job’s Daughters for the status. She sent him the letter from Appeals and Grievances stating that the decision should be rescinded. Immediately following the receipt of that letter he got a firmly worded email from the Supreme Guardian directing him that this was only a recommendation and that the Executive Supreme Guardian Council had another 30 days to decide to accept Appeals and Grievances suggestion. After exhausting all 30 days, he was notified they would in fact accept that decision and they would open an investigation. They did open the investigation and the investigator stated that his appeals packet had answered all his questions and the man had proved his case sufficiently. Regretfully, the investigator would only be able to make a recommendation to the ESGC (executive supreme guardian council). They received his recommendation yet decided to go ahead and ban the man from all activities this time, not citing any reasons.
After destroying the Bethel by the removal of this gentleman the Supreme Guardian had a difficult time finding council members for the Bethel whom they could control. After closing the Bethel by removing it’s charter temporarily they finally appointed 3 council members and allowed the Bethel to resume. The woman appointed to Bethel Guardian mysteriously resigned after just a few weeks due to the stress being caused to the Bethel. Only 3 council members were appointed, only 1 being a parent from the Bethel. This was a Bethel that had the most adults and daughters in the state of Arizona yet Supreme struggled to be able to appoint any council members who would do their bidding.
The previous Bethel council had taken action to ban a father from attending activities and was forced to provide detailed proof to the Supreme Guardian Council to support their actions. They provided years of examples of his bullying behavior and threatening demeanor and yet Supreme chose to repeal their decision and allow the man to continue participating. This man is very close friends with the Arizona Deputy and was able to obtain special treatment by Supreme. Supreme sent a letter rescinding his ban and permitting him to attend activities even though even the Vice Supreme Guardian had agreed with the council that clearly he exhibited intimidating and aggressive behavior.
Due to the Bethel Council’s removal of this dad, and the general state of chaos pushed upon the Bethel by Supreme’s removal of their beloved Associate Bethel Guardian, the Supreme Guide (3rd in line to be Supreme Guardian) came to the Bethel to talk with the daughters. The daughters age ranges were 10 years up to 20 years. She did not allow the parents to be present but 2 mothers remained and recorded the entire event. Occupy Job’s Daughters was provided with the recording of this conversation where the Supreme Guide was rude, abrasive, cold and downright mean to the girls. This was a 40 minute audio recording in which her tone was abrasive, harsh and at times shouting. She cut the girls off, didn’t allow them to speak and many of the girls left the room crying. When the adults realized what was going on they reentered the room and can be heard challenging the Supreme Guide on what had happened. Ultimately she was asked to leave and she apologized to the girls. Her behavior was reprehensible and she should never be in a position to be a leader of a girl’s youth group.
A woman from Indiana had a similar incident happen as this man in Arizona. She was a Past Honored Queen, and Past Bethel Guardian with 4 daughters who had been extremely active in Indiana serving as Honored Queens a total of 9 times. She had worked as an adult leader since 1990. She states that fear, threats and intimidation are the standard operating procedures in Indiana. She has witnessed adults being black-balled for no reason over the years she was involved and it finally happened to her and her family. She had reinstated a formerly closed Bethel, shown tremendous growth and success and was notified by Supreme that she was banned for 2 years citing no reasons and indicating that she was detrimental to the success of Indiana. Their rationale was that the members she got in the new Bethel could be distributed among the other failing Bethels so that they would not have to be closed due to poor leadership. The girls and parents in her Bethel were treated horribly in what she describes as verbally and mentally abusive behaviors. JDI leadership has threatened to remove her and her daughter’s titles if she speaks out. Her daughter is a past Supreme Bethel Honored Queen.
A gentleman in Maryland (home of the current Supreme Guardian) provided proof that he had contacted the Supreme Guardian about possible theft at a Bethel and also poor leadership and very poor treatment of the girls in that Bethel. His allegations of theft were against a family that is very well known, a past Supreme Bethel Guardian and her very ingrained family. In fact, she is so close to the Supreme Guardian that her grown kids call the Supreme Guardian Aunt Pat. He provided evidence in the form of a photograph of cash in one of the leader’s pockets. This was a very large fundraiser that the Bethel participates in annually at the fair selling funnel cakes.
This gentleman had 2 daughters join Job’s Daughters thinking it would be a great experience. One has been in for 4 years and his younger daughter just joined. He states that things have become a struggle due to his trying to teach his daughters how to behave in the face of adversity. They have become exposed to some mean power hungry adults, who have become entrenched in the system. Initially the problems for his family were just slights, being nice to certain girls while nitpicking his and other girls, to more and more petty things. Then it boiled over when they had elections and the power team of adult leaders who are friends with the Supreme Guardian took control and invalidated the elections. Letters were sent to the girls with accusations but with no evidence. They used backroom meetings with a council they put in place, the family ties within the bethel executive council and the grand guardian council in the state to get their desired outcomes.
This gentleman feels they are targeting his and other daughters to punish the parents who associate with them for reporting them about the mishandling of funds at the funnel cake fundraiser.
This brings another situation where good adults are resigning without cause. One BG (Bethel Guardian) resigned and one Guardian Secretary resigned for unknown reasons. Three or four other non-executive council members have been kicked of the council for disagreeing with the entrenched family council. Come to find out this treatment has happened to others before. Several girls and parents in the past years have either completely pulled out or just refuse to come to meetings while this family (friends of the Supreme Guardian) rules the bethel. As a matter of fact one parent told me they were still paying dues so that their daughter could apply for college help. When they applied for this help, a bethel council member said she was not eligible because she was no longer a member of the bethel. Yet still paying dues and not to mention still on the bethel roster call.
Woman removed as Grand Guardian 2014 in Kansas due to vendetta from the current Supreme Guide. This woman stood up to the bullying behavior of the current Supreme Guide and ultimately was removed during her own year as Grand Guardian for no cited reasons. We have a copy of the letter sent by the then Supreme Guardian. This woman began receiving threatening messages traced to the St. Louis MO and Kansas City MO areas. Police reports were filed. The team against her were assured the sitting Supreme Guardian would remove her from her Grand Guardian position in December but did not, it was not until June that she was ultimately removed, presumably from the mounting pressure from the current Supreme Guide (from Kansas) and her associates in Missouri. The toxicity is running rampant and continuing to rule the organization in a tight nit underground group. The Supreme Guide is the same woman mentioned in the meeting with the daughters in the Arizona Bethel.
We posted information about an incident in Arizona and a member of the Illinois Grand Guardian Council line commented that she had been involved in a conversation about that very gentleman for 4 hours. There was no reason that this woman should have been privy to participating with the ESGC in a discussion about that gentleman. It’s just further proof that there is an inner circle running Job’s Daughters.
Numerous Facebook threads have been started regarding what constitutes conduct unbecoming an adult in Job’s Daughters and why people shy away from becoming CAV’s with Job’s Daughters. Comments abound on those discussions with talk of CAV status being pulled for no reason and yet, adults with very unbecoming behavior who have no consequences. The comments all indicate that is just depends on what circle you fall within. There are stringent rules on reporting CAV violations – violations that are reportable are related to drugs or alcohol at a function, improper / illicit behavior or endangerment. Complaints are reviewed by the Youth Protection committee and the Board of Trustees and are to be held confidentially. There is a general lack of trust for the Board of Trustees and a general sense of the corruption and favoritism so reports are often not made.
We heard from a woman in Queensland who reported an incident. Her experience reporting a violation led to her, as an adult leaving the order, and her youngest daughter being treated unfairly to the point she has had enough too. She said, to top it all off nothing gets done about it either. She vowed that she would never make a YPP complaint again.
Below is a table of the states in which Job’s Daughters exist in the United States and a column to indicate states where leadership and Youth Protection issues are being reported.
- Arizona – YES
- California – YES
- Florida – YES
- Idaho – YES
- Illinois – YES
- Indiana – YES
- Kansas – YES
- Maryland – YES
- Michigan – YES
- Minnesota – YES
- Missouri – YES
- Nebraska – YES
- Nevada- YES
- New Mexico – YES
- Ohio – YES
- Oklahoma – YES
- Oregon – YES
- South Dakota
- Utah – YES
- Virginia – YES
- Washington – YES
30 states – 20 that we know of reporting issues 66.6%
Australia & Canada also reporting the same issues.
There are numerous other examples of incidents reported and screen shots of posts and comments on Facebook. We’ve heard from daughters who have been threatened with their current standing in the organization and their titles. We have heard from adults with the same situation, threatened and intimidated. People are very fearful to speak out publicly and come to Occupy Job’s Daughters, Heidi Yoast-Pink and Patricia Forman who runs the Jobie Truth page about the lawsuit.
In addition to all of the information we have provided regarding behavior towards the beloved adults and the daughters and families, which is, in itself disturbing for a Masonic based organization to be treating it’s families in this manner, we have more detailed information about the lawsuit and the fiduciary duties of the Board of Trustees.
The JDI Board of Trustees is comprised of 5 elected officers and the top 4 members of the ESGC.
Heidi Yoast Pink is a Past Grand Bethel Honored Queen, Past Honored Queen, and Majority Member from the State of Washington. She started her business, “Pink Power Printing,” about 9 years ago as a way to bring in revenue to help defray her medical costs after being diagnosed with stage III breast cancer. Heidi developed a wide customer base, thus allowing her to offer her services to Masonic Youth Organizations at or below her own cost – to give back to the organizations she loved so much.
At the Job’s Daughters International (JDI) Supreme Session 2016 in Grand Rapids, Michigan, held July 23-31, 2016, during the open “Town Hall” one Shelly Cole, then Supreme Guide, now Vice Supreme Guardian, declared, in open session, that “some Past Grand Bethel Honored Queen from Washington” was illegally using JDI trademarks, had been sent several “cease and desist letters,” and members should not buy from her (we have written, eye witness statements). Ms. Yoast’s Facebook pages and websites were even displayed, and witnesses state Ms. Cole was visibly angry. Disappointed in Ms. Cole’s false accusations, Ms. Yoast sent a letter to Ms. Cole and the JDI Board of Trustees (BoT) requesting that Ms. Cole’s inflammatory statement be retracted (letter is attached).
Rather than respond to Ms. Yoast’s letter, the JDI BoT sent her a “cease and desist” letter (C&D), which was unreasonably vague, yet demanded Ms. Yoast “destroy” any infringing merchandise and provide an accounting to JDI – but did not identify any infringing merchandise (letter attached). Ms. Yoast’s attorney responded to JDI’s C&D letter, requesting clarification and reminding them that none of Ms. Yoast’s products infringed any registered JDI trademark.
Rather than simply responding to Ms. Yoast’s Counsel, despite multiple phone calls and e-mails, on October 6, 2016, filed a claim against Ms. Yoast in the United Stated District Court of Western Washington. The claim was filed the day before JDI’s counsel emailed Ms. Yoast’s counsel and informed him they “would be” filing a claim rather than having a conversation via phone or email.
Once the claim was filed, but before Ms. Yoast was required to file an answer, against Counsel, Ms. Yoast emailed the JDI BoT one last time to try to resolve the issue out of course. They refused to have a conversation with her (email attached). Ms. Yoast has been left with no choice but to defend herself. As of mid-February, Ms. Yoast has expended approximately $40,000 in putting on her legal defense, with very little chance of recovering those fees. Part of that cost has been due to electronic discovery, and, while we cannot disclose the specifics, JDI has been less than responsive. With e-discovery, we estimate that JDI will have expended well over $50,000 – that is a conservative amount.
JDI has a history with this type of action. In the 1970s, the then named International Order of Job’s Daughters sued Lindeburg and Company, a California jewelry / promotional item shop, for trademark “infringement arising out of Lindeburg’s manufacture and sale of jewelry bearing the Job’s Daughters insignia.” See International Order of Job’s Daughters v. Lindeburg and Company 633 F. 2d 912 (9th Cir. 1981). **note – the Lindeburg case is different from the Yoast case only in the fact that Ms. Yoast does not use any of the JDI registered trademarks, as Lindeburg’s did. Ms. Yoast has only ever used words that are not registered marks of any organization.**
The 9th Circuit Court ruled as follows:
“We conclude from our examination of the trial judge’s findings and of the underlying evidence that Lindeburg was not using the Job’s Daughters name and emblem as trademarks. The insignia were a prominent feature of each item so as to be visible to others when worn, allowing the wearer to publicly express her allegiance to the organization. Lindeburg never designated the merchandise as “official” Job’s Daughters’ merchandise or otherwise affirmatively indicated sponsorship. Job’s Daughters did not show a single instance in which a customer was misled about the origin, sponsorship, or endorsement of Lindeburg’s jewelry, nor that it received any complaints about Lindeburg’s wares. Finally, there was evidence that many other jewelers sold unlicensed Job’s Daughters jewelry, implying that consumers did not ordinarily purchase their fraternal jewelry from only “official” sources. We conclude that Job’s Daughters did not meet its burden of proving that a typical buyer of Lindeburg’s merchandise would think that the jewelry was produced, sponsored, or endorsed by the organization. The name and emblem were functional aesthetic components of the product, not trademarks. There could be, therefore, no infringement.” Id.
To take a case all the way to the 9th Circuit typically comes at a cost in the low six figures – per party – and there is little to no hope of fee recovery. In the 1980s this likely cost JDI over $200,000. Yet again they persist…
But there is a new twist. Since the 1980s, JDI has become a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation, formed in the state of Nebraska. This means that JDI members of the BoT have specific responsibilities, known as fiduciary duties, to which they must adhere or face serious consequences.
Board members, officers and directors are considered “fiduciaries” of the non profit. As a fiduciary, you have a duty of care, a duty of loyalty, and a duty of obedience.
Duty of Care
A fiduciary has a responsibility to participate in decision-making on behalf of the organization, and must exercise independent judgment while doing so. These decisions must be informed, meaning that the board member should make efforts to become familiar with the relevant, available facts. For example, members should require sufficient information to make an independent decision. If board members find that the information is invalid or incomplete, they are expected to ask questions about it. Independent advice is required if the nonprofit is is entering into a material contract – which would include something like a fee agreement with a law firm to file litigation against someone.
So any board member should, before agreeing or voting for embarking on a piece of expensive litigation, have had all the facts in front of them in order to make an informed decision.
Duty of Loyalty
When acting on behalf of an organization, board members must set aside their own interests, whether professional OR PERSONAL, or the interests of any other organization. The nonprofit organization must come first, always. A board member cannot seize an opportunity for his or her own gain, or to advance a personal goal. It is also a breach of the duty of loyalty to fail to preserve the confidentiality of the organization’s affairs. Disclosing information regarding voting processes, confidential discussions, or other information is a breach of this duty.
Duty of Obedience
Board members have a responsibility to be faithful to the organization’s stated mission and not to act or use its resources in incompatible ways or purposes.
JDI’s “Object and Scope” is as follows:
“The object of the SGC is to have jurisdiction over JDI and to band together girls for spiritual and moral upbuilding, to develop leadership, to seek knowledge, to teach love of God, love of Country, respect for its Flag, love of home and family, and reverence for the teachings of the Holy Scriptures.”
If a board member breaches any of these duties or otherwise harms the nonprofit organization or its stakeholders, he or she may be personally liable for failing to comply.
It is up to the Nebraska State Attorney General to investigate any suspected breach of this fiduciary duty.
Needless to say, Occupy Job’s Daughters administrators feel at risk by speaking out without maintaining their anonymity. They maintain the forum, respond confidentially to messages from supporters and interact with commentators on the page.
We now stand for sweeping change needed at the highest level of Job’s Daughters leadership.
Job’s Daughters BOT and ESGC members have not acted in the best interests of the organization, the girls, their families. They are not upholding their fiduciary duties.
We need leadership changed at the highest levels – we ask for the resignation of nearly all Board of Trustees (BOT) members and Executive Supreme Guardian Council members. Interim external leaders should step in to rebuild the organization with ethical servant leaders.
Let’s keep those that are on the front lines of righteousness in our thoughts and prayers brethren, we are only as strong as each branch of our fraternal family. Additional information can be found at both the Jobie Truth Facebook Pg. & Occupy JDI Facebook Pg.