Oregon political and environmental activist Lloyd Marbet has announced the filing of a defamation suit against as-yet unknown individuals operating a website called RetainOurBoard.org. The name of the website refers to the Board of Directors of Columbia Credit Union of Vancouver, Washington which has been the subject of a recall effort from credit union members, including Mr. Marbet. Marbet is running for a position on the Columbia Credit Union's supervisory committee in an election scheduled for September 15.
In November 2003, Columbia Credit Union held a vote on whether the nearly 70,000-member financial institution should convert from a credit union to a bank, a move which would take away members' voting rights ("one member, one vote") and move the power and control more firmly into the hands of the board of directors. Since that time the vote, in which the voting members, acting on the advice of the credit union's board of directors, narrowly elected to convert to a bank, has been declared unlawful by state and federal regulators. The incumbent board of directors also narrowly escaped a recall vote held on March 28, 2004.
In a side by side comparison of the candidates for positions on Columbia's board of directors and supervisory committee, the RetainOurBoard.org website listed Marbet's current occupation as "Incarcerated Political Activist" next to a photograph of Marbet being arrested at Trojan Nuclear Power Plant in 1993.
This audio file is from a Friday morning press conference at the law offices of Reeves, Kahn, and Hennessy, where Marbet and his attorney, Peggy Hennessy, addressed the RetainOurBoard website and the defamation suit they filed on Thursday in Multnomah County Circuit Court.