Image: Montgomery County GOP Chairman Wally Wilkerson (sitting at table, second from right), Charlie Parada (sitting, at right), and GOP Steering Committee Chairman Paul Gebolys (sitting, at left in black vest), met with a group of convicted felons, a misdemeanant or two, and others at Coal’s Smokehouse near Splendora on February 2, 2019. Wilkerson, Parada, and the felons threatened Gebolys and attempted to intimidate him. The meeting resulted in nothing other than to display the level of depravity to which Wilkerson is now willing to resort.
Splendora and Conroe, February 4 – It seemed as though things couldn’t have gotten worse for Montgomery County Republican Party (MCRP) Chairman Wally Wilkerson after, on October 2, 2018, the Republican Party of Texas Officials Committee issued a ruling that Wilkerson failed to fulfill statutory duties as County Republican Chairman and “engaged in behavior designed to disgrace the Republican Party.” The ruling came after a majority of the elected Republican Precinct Chairs in Montgomery County filed a complaint under Republican Party Rule 8(k) that Wilkerson had refused to abide by Texas election law, Republican Party Rules, and the Bylaws of the Montgomery County Republican Party. The ruling also came after the State Republican Executive Committee, including the four Committee members representing Montgomery County (Terry Holcomb, Judy Parada, Walter West II, and Allison Winter), voted 64 to 0 that Wilkerson’s position that MCRP had not voted to adopt new Party Bylaws was dead wrong.
Since those rulings Wilkerson’s behavior has actually gotten worse, not better. Rather than following the direction of the Republican Party of Texas, the disgraced Wilkerson has:
- Failed to turn over MCRP bank accounts and Party funds to the elected Republican Party Treasurer John Wertz;
- Walked out of an Executive Committee (Precinct Chairs) meeting, which Wilkerson had called without proper or sufficient notice of the meeting;
- Filed two false Campaign Finance Reports with state officials in which he falsely named someone other than Wertz as the Republican Party Treasurer; and
- Spent thousands of Party funds illegally without authority of the Executive Committee on his personal secretary and office overhead.
Wilkerson continues to be a mess. His primary enablers are melinda fredricks, the illegally-paid private secretary whom Wilkerson pays almost $2,000 per month out of Party funds, and one of the Precinct Chairs, Charlie Parada, who has repeatedly made clear that he will never abide by the rulings of the Republican Party of Texas or the Texas Election Code.
Amazingly, in the past few days, Wilkerson’s behavior has gotten worse.
Wilkerson’s gathering of convicted felons at Coal’s Smokehouse, February 2, to bully conservative Gebolys
On Saturday, February 2, 2019, Wilkerson and Parada called a meeting at Coal’s Smokehouse near Splendora to try to intimidate some of the MCRP Steering Committee members to agree to allow Wilkerson to have dictatorial control over the GOP. Wilkerson and Parada made clear during the meeting that they still resent the County Executive Committee’s vote to adopt new Bylaws which dispersed the Party’s authority among a broad spectrum of individuals active in the County Republican Party.
Parada told the one Party Steering Committee member, Paul Gebolys, who attended the meeting that neither he nor Wilkerson would agree to any leadership for the MCRP other than “just one person calling the shots.”
The bizarre meeting was videotaped.
The meeting began with a gathering around an outdoor table of no less than five (5) convicted felons with whom Wilkerson closely associates. In addition to the five convicted felons around the table, there was a Republican activist who also has at least one Class A misdemeanor theft conviction. Among the people at the gathering, at least two individuals are not even Montgomery County residents.
Three of the five convicted felons dressed in biker outfits apparently for the purpose of intimidating Gebolys, who is 74 years old and a retired insurance executive who lives in The Woodlands. The five convicted felons included Greg Long, an employee with a history of drug abuse whom Precinct 4 County Commissioner James Metts recently put on the Montgomery County government payroll as a construction foreman. The felons also included representatives from the Family of Felons of Splendora who live in a school bus.
At the beginning of the meeting, three of the biker gang members lectured Gebolys. One of them said in a threatening tone, “We buried the hatchet today…I’m going to do all I can to make sure that group [GOP Vice Chairman Reagan Reed and his grassroots conservative allies] doesn’t sit in those chairs again.”
After most of the felons left the table, Parada and Wilkerson remained behind to speak with Gebolys. Parada claimed that Wilkerson “has never received a notice for a [Republican Party] Steering Committee meeting.” Wilkerson then contradicted Parada and explained that he had received notices of the meetings but “I haven’t been able to attend any of the meetings because I’ve had conflicting meetings every time.” (Wilkerson is retired. The meetings occur on Saturday mornings and early Saturday afternoons.)
Gebolys did not agree to any specific action.
Two other individuals – GOP Vice Chairman Reagan Reed and GOP Treasurer John Wertz – had received emails from the biker gang inviting them to the meeting. Since the biker gang leader didn’t make clear what the purpose of the meeting was, Reed and Wertz have confirmed to The Golden Hammer that they chose not to attend.
None of the five other members of the MCRP Steering Committee received invitations to attend the secret meeting at which Wilkerson and his group of felons attended.
Wilkerson’s support among Republican activists has steadily declined since his bizarre behavior began at the end of June, 2018, when he presided over a County Executive Committee meeting, declared that the Committee adopted Bylaws during a vote over which he presided, and then three days later began to take the position that the adoption of the Bylaws never occurred.
Wilkerson wrote in a newsletter and a memorandum that the MCRP is “not a part of the Republican Party.”
Reed explained how he learned about the meeting and his decision not to attend:
“I received an email about the meeting over a week ago with very little information. The whole thing seemed suspicious and vague from the start. Many of my fellow Steering Committee members were not invited. I was also not told that Dr. Wilkerson would be there. I chose not to go because it is not my place to attempt to bargain away in a back room meeting the bylaws which the precinct chairs voted on. We owe it to the precinct chairs and Republican voters of Montgomery County to operate with complete openness and transparency. Any changes to the bylaws must be done in the open and debated and approval by the executive committee.“No one at that meeting was authorized to speak on behalf of the Steering Committee, and I want to be clear that I am personally opposed to any amendment that takes away the precinct chairs’ ability to vote on their own leadership. The bylaws issue has already been decided by the state party, and my time and focus are on keeping Montgomery County red, not playing back room politics.”
Jon Bouche, a GOP Steering Committee member, said of the February 2 meeting of Wilkerson and the felons, “I also noted that Mr. Parada and Chairman Wilkerson stated that they would be ‘willing to accept the new bylaws’ IF the bylaws were changed to what they want them to be. You know, I just have to say that I find it a special and disturbing kind of arrogance for someone to believe that just because they don’t accept the truth, it is no longer the truth and that their ‘acceptance’ of the truth can be used as some sort of bargaining chip. The attitude displayed by those statements alone is a ringing endorsement for the new bylaws.”
Bouche added, “Finally, the debate about the bylaws is over and we have moved forward in modernizing the party, energizing the party and uniting the party just as we promised. We had a very successful November election cycle with hundreds of volunteers reaching out to thousands and thousands of voters and getting them to the polls. We were able to do this despite our Chairman and his followers effectively boycotting our election efforts and even forming a PAC to work against us. We are not interested in going backwards and we will continue to build upon our efforts to keep Montgomery County ‘Red’.
Arguably, Wilkerson’s worst behavior involves his illegal expenditure of Party funds without approval of those expenses and without approval of any budget. Wilkerson refuses to turn over the bank accounts under his control to the Treasurer, Wertz, even though the Republican Party of Texas leadership has ordered Wilkerson to do so.
Wilkerson filed a Campaign Finance Report with the Montgomery County Elections Administrator on January 15, 2019. He illegally showed Mark Turnbull as the Party Treasurer, when, in fact, the elected Treasurer is John Wertz.
In the Report, Wilkerson showed that he had spent $12,873.08 in Party funds while only collecting $3,875.54 during the two month period prior through December 31, 2018. Wilkerson still controls $31,423.66 of Party funds illegally.
Sadly, of Wilkerson’s expenditures, $11,019.16, or 85.6%, were on office overhead for the small office Wilkerson maintains in a dangerous part of Conroe. Wilkerson paid $5,628.63 of Republican Party contributions to melinda fredricks to serve as his private secretary.
After the Republican Party of Texas’ official finding that Wilkerson “disgraced” the Republican Party and has intended to do so, it’s not surprising that his remaining support is only among the most extreme elements supporting the power “establishment”: felons with financial connections to government officials, corrupt unemployable individuals on the public dole, and ne’er do wells.
During the November 6 General Election cycle, many of Wilkerson’s closest allies campaigned for democrats against the Republican nominees, worked to advance the anti-family, pro-LGBTQ agenda, and sought to undermine Republican campaigning and fundraising. They went so far as to form a fake political action committee, “Republican Voters of Texas,” whose president campaigned for democrats and whose board includes at least one convicted felon and others who worked against the Republican Party and its Platform.