Loose Lips

Last Post On The W Hotel

At yesterday's marathon hearing on Mayor Vince Gray's administration's hiring practices, recently fired Department of Employment Services Acting Director Rochelle Webb repeated what'd she'd already told LL: the bad political optics involving her staying at the W Hotel and having a DOES employee driver her to and from work weren't her fault.

Instead, she said, she was just going with the flow based on what Lisa Mallory, a deputy at DOES who is now Webb's temporary replacement.

LL obtained emails through a Freedom of Information Act request that make Webb's case, but certainly don't make Mallory look like she was purposely trying to set Webb up, as some Webb supporters have suggested.

Here's one exchange:

"Can you arrange for me to be picked up for work on Monday?" Webb asked Mallory in early January.

"Of course! What time would you like to be picked up at the W Hotel?" Mallory replied.

The most notable thing in the FOIA response: how many District government manhours went into booking and paying for Webb's room at the W. It looks like it took a small army to take care of that sucker.

[scribd id=52610234 key=key-f11xxkdl6tiq3k1d6x2 mode=list]

  • trulee_pist

    Saddest part of the email trail.

    From John Coombs, policy analyst in Mayor's Office of Policy and Legislative Affairs, to Dr. Rochelle Webb (Doctorate of Management in Organizational Leadership from the University of Phoenix): "I need an electronic copy of your CV for submission."

    Webb: "What is a CV? Don't know the terminology yet?"

    All the way from Arizona!

  • what a deal

    Wow, one of the emails shows that the Marriott was charging $289 but they got the W for $181 a night. That is a deal!!!

  • Wendy Washington

    @Trulee, my sentiments exactly -- that has nothing to do with DC government terminology. It is hard to believe that some who has a doctorate did not know that CV means curriculum vitae.

    The most troubling thing for me was the screw up with the hotel's name on the check. It looks like sheer ineptitude. Hell, I have seen more copies of Rochelle's hotel folio than I would ever want thanks to LL's FOIA requests. Surely, those bills were attached to the final check request. Correction: standard business procedure is to attach documentation to a check request, clearly that was not done in this instance.

  • Kathryn

    The Director of EMPLOYMENT Services with a "Doctorate" DOESN'T know what a CV is???? God help this city.

  • Kathryn

    Also, the University of Phoenix is NOT a University. Let's get real.

  • Still Proves the point

    Hey Kathryn, while you point out this error, this correspondence still proves Dr. Webb's point. So laugh and criticize all you want. The string of emails show who was at work on procuring the W, the rate at the W.

  • Laughing

    Ahhhh, Mallory set her up! The correct answer to Can you arrange for a ride should have been "NO"! Lol

    But that's not how it worked in the past so no one who cherishes their job would give that answer. Dr. Webb actually set herself up by not researching where she was going and the rules/regulations/atmosphere prior to accepting the job.

    Did she not think their would be experienced Deputys who thought they may be better as Director than some outsider who doesn't know what a cv is? Hahahaha...

    The employees at DOES have been kicking out Directors (by maiking them look stupid) since... forever! They will do EXACTLY what you tell them to do (especially if they dont like you) just to watch you mess up and get fired for making the request.

    Another one bites the dust!
    So long sucker!

  • TheAngryVoter

    Liar Liar Mayor on Fire smh

    Welp this doesn't help the situation at all especially since the Government SHUTDOWN


  • Meia

    I hope she was just having a brain freeze. I don't want to believe she didn't know CV. Professional career basics....employment lingo. Something they should be discussing and instituting @ DOES on a daily basis. Jeez!

  • Not so fast

    While yes, CV associated with a job, if you submit a resume when asked for a CV, you would be submitting the wrong document. A CV is an academic term for Curriculum Vitae. This is in fact not a resume but a more detailed narrative of job description.

    Not saying she shouldn't have known that. But just want to point out, the majority of you didn't know that either as you have all mentioned a resume. In fact a CV is only usually asked of people in the academic world or people working on research, grants and proposals.

  • Danielle

    @Kathryn: I hoped you were kidding about the doctorate from University of Phoenix, but I just looked it up. Her son also got his "Master's" from University of Phoenix and was an "admissions" counselor at a for profit school (aka sales). This is quite the family.

  • trulee_pist

    @ Still Proves the Point, the screw up with billing--sending the W hotel a check made out to Hotel Washington--was perpetuated by Mallory, who wrote "It is the SAME hotel!!! Hotel Washington was purchased by W."


    Then, of course, she threw the finance office under the bus by promising to see what she could do to insure swifter payment of invoices in the future.

  • Maximillian

    It's painfully clear that Dr. Webb was in over her head. She has no polish whatsoever.

    And for those whom have had the pleasure of working with Lisa Mallory, Stephanie Reich and the DOES executives can attest to how incompetent they are. The blind leading the deaf, dump and blind....I feel for the unemployed residents of the District who need to rely on this agency for assistance.

  • trulee_pist


    She knew that. She asked for a salary of $150,000, then the offer letter came with a salary of $165,000. Happiest day of her life, she testified. Just another sad day for DC taxpayers.

  • Hypocrite Much?

    Maximillian...you could not have said it better, and I quote "And for those whom have had the pleasure of working with Lisa Mallory, Stephanie Reich and the DOES executives can attest to how incompetent they are. The blind leading the deaf, dump and blind....I feel for the unemployed residents of the District who need to rely on this agency for assistance."

    Lisa Mallory is an unprofessional, unethical, sneeky, unconscionable human being; Stephanie Reich is as "mentally ill" as she is mentally inept, the ONLY reason that she is at DOES and in such a high profile position (Chief of Staff) is because she is the Sgt. Schultz to Lorraine Green's Col. Klink. In other words if you need an inept SNITCH who is there to be the "overseer" on the DOES Plantation for Massa Green, then there you have the relationship. Stephanie Reich is about as unstable as Sybil and yet Lorraine Green placed her as a Chief of Staff at an agency that is supposed to grow business interests in employment District residents and put a majority of blacks and latinos back to work...all that I can say is DC RESIDENTS ARE SCREWED!!!!!

    In closing, did anyone hear that old geezer LeRoy Ellis testify that his only transferable Workforce Development skill was a failed workforce initiative of 1986...this is the old guy who was a neighbor and crony of Howard Brooks (Brooks is the boyfriend/business partner of Lorraine Green). This old guy is being paid $125,000.00 to bring back the failed initiatives of the 1980's and 90's.

    Again, there is a common theme in all of this and it is Lorraine Green and the failed governance of the 1990's.

    Please pray for the residents of Washington DC because they will surely parish under this groups leadership.

  • Corinne Rothblum

    The (thankfully former) director of the Department of Employment Services does not know what a CV is?

    Whew, dodged that bullet.

  • all of this is messy

    It really irritates me when ignorance is posted here. Let me set the record straight. I don't have any type of relationship or allegiance to Lisa Mallory or Rochelle Webb.
    This first thing, the documents clearly shows no one wrote or sent a wrong check to a wrong hotel. The Hotel Washington was purchased by the The W. It’s still listed in the dc government SOAR system as The Hotel Washington. It’s one in the same people. You should do your research before you make comments and call people incompetent. The second, there was nothing posted from the FOIA report that showed a check that was sent to the The W. It talked about the payment (NO payment was made) and it’s showing an invoice. SHEESH!!!!!!! (no billing screw up)
    I’m willing to bet that Kathryn didn’t know what a CV was either. She has put too much effort into condemning Ms. Webb and making a mockery of where she went to school. That’s not kool. What is the Univ. of Phoenix if it’s not a real university?
    Last, does anyone here know Ms. Mallory?

  • Kathryn

    @allofthisismessy: Anytime someone points out a FACT, it is not "condemning". I do, of course, know what a CV is, which is why I pointed it out. Nice try to re-route the discussion emotionally. Also, anyone who knows someone who has received a Doctorate or attended an institution of higher education recognizes that obtaining a Doctorate cannot be done properly or with true rigor "online"; however, I'm sure the PhD moniker can easily be purchased for a fee, which is obviously what happened here. I see waste, fraud, and abuse each day in my position with the city and am highly discouraged by the Gray administration and these laughable hiring choices. By the way, "kool", is not spelled with a k.

  • trulee_pist

    C'mon, AllofThis isMessy, you are just pulling my leg now. Right there in the documents are emails from poor ol' Cyril Byron and Theresa Lake from OCFO, stating, "Finance staff from the W Hotel stated that they would not be able to cash a check made out to Hotel Washington," and "I call the hotel, per W hotel it is not the same, and they can not cash a check with the name Hotel Washington."

    Those poor saps at OCFO. Didn't they know Mallory had taken them into (DOO-doo-DOO-doo) the Twilight Zone?

  • Wendy Washington

    If you look at p.42 of the document, you will see a DOES purchase order, dated Feb 2, that has the Hotel Washington on it. Then scroll down to p.46 you will see the hotel invoice that has the W logo on it. Then scroll down to p. 52 with the e-mail string where you will see the comments from DOES staff who had been informed that the W Hotel could not process a check made out to the Hotel Washington.

    It boggles the mind that the DOES staff could not grasp the name change -- and that checks have to bear the correct name.

  • Respected Citizens

    What's sad, is the real picture about Lisa Mallory, who now dates the Fire Chief Ellerbe. She is simply incompetent and some respect DUM as HELL.

    She was placed at Employment Services under the Fenty's administration, and stands as the only person left to keep the ball running for large agency that needs expertise and immediate overhaul.

    Lisa also participated with the in-house irregularities of the Procurement Process of In-school and Out-of-school contractors that were rightfully de-funded.

    This woman signed the contract for the W hotel and driver payments for Dr. Webb.

    If she was tested on the following she would easily fail:

    1) Knowledge of Workforce Investment Act law;
    2) Knowledge of WIC laws and governance;
    3) Affiliation/Respect of the Department of Labor:
    3) Ability to write a Solicitation;
    4) Effective Communication Skills w/ Staff & Community;

    Like it or not, Dr. Rochelle Webb passes.

    The Mayor of this city needs to find an immediate replacement of this disgusting level of an Agency Head, who RUSHED to place her face on the agency's website April 2nd, knowing she does not belong.

    Until Gray understands the significance of removing Fenty's DUM ASS regime of people, and securing knowledgeable employees DC will be doomed with unsucdessful outcomes time and time again.

  • ezg437

    I have news for all of you: Dr. Webb will win in the end. She always does. Try to portray her as dumb if you like, that appears the best you can do. Has anyone checked what she did in Arizona? That would be too easy and would not support your claims. She is a good person, a good manager, and this is DC's loss. She's not perfect, and can be rough when needed. That's a good manager. Good luck to you cement heads and your good ol' person crap. If you would bother to dig, you could probably find some actual shortcomings. She is a risk taker and that comes with a price at times. But overall, again I tell you this is DC's loss. BAM