No one knows how he did it, but former Tucson City Councilman Rodney Glassman, now a Republican, has an Exploratory Committee for Arizona Corporation Commission and it “has banked $150,000.” Glassman, who last embarrassed himself in a bizarre failed run against Sen. John McCain, filed his committee paperwork one month ago.
Speculation is that the very unpopular Secretary of State Michele Reagan convinced others to welcome Glassman, a former legislative aide for Rep. Raul Grijalva, into the GOP fold and the Corporation Commission race.
Remarkably Rodney Britz Glassman, heir to the Britz Fertilizer manure dynasty, has recruited Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery to chair the committee. Glassman has been endorsed by Reagan, State Senator Karen Fann, State representatives Jay Lawrence, David Livingston, TJ Shope, and Noel Campbell, Maricopa County Board Chairman Denny Barney.
Somehow he was also able to secure the endorsements of Phoenix City Councilman Sal DiCiccio and Sen. Sonny Borelli.
Controversy has surrounded Glassman for years. In 2005, he was accused of plagiarism. According to the Arizona Daily Star:
U.S. Senate candidate Rodney Glassman is facing allegations he plagiarized some parts of his dissertation for his doctorate in arid land resource sciences.
The 246-page dissertation, completed in 2005, has many passages that match, nearly word for word, previously published scientific works by others.
The allegations first surfaced on a local, self-described “progressive” blog Wednesday.
While information in the public domain that amounts to “common knowledge” doesn’t have to be cited, in academic papers, words must be placed in quotes if they’re used exactly. Parenthetical citations are used when paraphrasing other people’s ideas.
In response to Star questions, Glassman’s campaign released a statement saying the dissertation included “original, experimental research” testing whether hands-on learning made a difference in classroom learning for 400 fourth-graders in the Vail School District.
“His research, dissertation, and Ph.D. were reviewed, guided, and approved by his committee of tenured, research academics from the University of Arizona College of Agriculture,” his spokesman, Blake Morlock, said, noting articles using the research were subsequently published nationally and internationally.
In the introduction discussing the “agrarian tradition in the United States,” for example, the former Tucson city councilman wrote, “From these humble beginnings, the process by which Americans have been taught about the art and science of using renewable resources has expanded and changed many times.”
There are neither citations nor quotation marks, although the same quote appears in a July 1999 research summary by the Western Region Coordinating Committee for Agricultural Literacy. Read more here.
“When Albert Britz, a Berkeley-educated chemist who founded the family’s fertilizer company 54 years ago, and his wife, Helen, died in 1986, they left a $23-million estate to their three grown children, David, Linda and Martin. With the vision of Glassman, Linda’s husband, the Britz heirs have moved into the business of lending.”
Glassman’s stint as as Cave Creek’s interim town manager was highly controversial. Glassman, who was been described by his senatorial campaign staff as “out of control in the worst possible way,” was appointed to the town manager spot with the help of former Vice Mayor Adam Trenk.
According to Sonoran News, Trenk was “subsequently recalled along with the other three councilmen who voted to oust the town manager and hire Glassman.” Sonoran News reported:
During his tenure as interim town manager, Glassman spent a majority of his time away from town hall wining and dining people at taxpayer expense.
And, while Glassman’s contract was to terminate no later than Jan. 8, 2014, the same members of council who voted to hire Glassman, voted to extend his contract through Feb. 14, despite public outcry.
Glassman spent the bulk of his time as interim town manager pursuing his political goals while he delayed the process for selecting a permanent town manager.
He also took it upon himself to hire an independent contractor for a period of nine months to provide “community outreach coordination services” at a cost of $1,000 per month to work a minimum of 10 hours per month.
So, there was another $9,000 Glassman racked up in expenses during his tenure with the town.
As Glassman delayed the job he was hired to perform, he was unable to complete it within the six month period it was to be accomplished.
When council voted 4-3 to extend Glassman’s contract, then Councilman Ernie Bunch, who was one of three dissenting votes, stated, “We told the citizens of Cave Creek we’d have a new town manager in six months. This speaks to a non-performance bonus.”
Glassman seemed to disappear after the Cave Creek debacle. He reemerged when he was appointed to Reagan’s Technology, Transparency & Commerce Council. Reagan touted the council members as “an amazing group of industry leaders” to help her “identify and implement an agenda that will make government more efficient and accountable.”
According to his LinkedIn profile, Glassman is currently “of counsel” with Beus Gilbert PLLC. Since May 2016, he has worked with the firm in the areas of “commercial litigation, real estate entitlement/development, and working with c-suite business leaders to pursue opportunities and deal with challenges outside of their traditional organizational structures.”
In March 2016, at the time of his appointment to Reagan’s council, Glassman was with the Ryley Carlock & Applewhite law firm in an External Affairs and Government Relations practice. According the the firm’s website, Glassman’s practice was focused on “driving relevancy, enhancing credibility, and developing substantive relationships for his government, corporate, and non-profit clients.”