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Beleaguered City Agency Chief Ramos Lied on Resume

November 12, 1987|GLENN F. BUNTING | Times Staff Writer

Dominick J. Ramos, the beleaguered president of the Los Angeles Private Industry Council, made numerous false claims to embellish his career achievements in 1984 when he was hired by the city agency after a nationwide executive search, The Times has learned.

Among the untruthful statements contained in his four-page resume, Ramos reported that former President Jimmy Carter appointed him to a "subcabinet" position in the Department of Commerce, that he worked as head of the corporate banking group at First Los Angeles Bank for 20 months and that he was selected by Mayor Tom Bradley to serve on three city committees.

According to records, however, Ramos was not appointed by Carter to the Commerce job, worked at First Los Angeles Bank for only six months as a low-level vice president and was appointed by Bradley to only one committee.

The Private Industry Council president already is under fire for allegedly mishandling a $160,000 marketing contract, soliciting political contributions from his staff and board of directors and improperly using government funds to buy a new luxury car.

Ramos faces a crucial job performance review today when the Private Industry Council board of directors meets in a special closed session to consider the charges. At least one board member, Frank Velasco, said he will call for Ramos to resign because of a pattern of "continuous unprofessionalism and lack of leadership skills."

Ramos, 50, who has been the target of inquiries by the Los Angeles Police Department, the FBI and the U.S. Department of Labor, has denied any wrongdoing. He said he is confident that he will retain his $76,572-a-year job after he tells his story today to the Private Industry Council board. So far, none of the investigations has resulted in any charges against Ramos.

In an interview, Ramos admitted that he made several false representations on his resume when he applied to become president of the Private Industry Council, a nonprofit agency that controls $42 million a year in federal job-training funds.

"It was not intended to mislead anybody," Ramos said. "I don't think (the board of directors) looked (at the false information) or cared one way or the other."

Vice Chairman James Dunbar disagreed, saying that the Private Industry Council committee members who selected Ramos three years ago were not aware of any inconsistencies in his resume.

"Anything related to his past history would have been of interest to us if we had been able to get all that kind of information," Dunbar said.

Ramos was hired as president by his friend and colleague, Les Shaw, who served as chairman at the time. Shaw was vice president in charge of community development at Great Western Savings & Loan, where Ramos also worked as a regional vice president.

When Ramos was hired by the Private Industry Council, his proposed $60,000 salary and liberal compensation package was found to be excessive by City Administrative Officer Keith Comrie, who recommended a $5,000 cut. But Shaw justified the higher salary figure by arguing that the agency board had recruited "someone from a senior level in the corporate community," according to a 1984 memo.

The resume submitted by Ramos is full of impressive qualifications in the diverse fields of private industry, government service and civic activities--all traits that the board members were seeking in their first chief executive.

Between 1967 and 1971, Ramos reported, he was a "financial administrator and senior auditor for the second largest school district in the United States, with an annual budget of over $1 billion."

While Ramos worked as a senior auditor for the Los Angeles Unified School District during that period, he was not an administrator of any kind and did not manage finances, said Bob Peck, the school district's management services administrator.

Ties to Carter Claimed

In 1980, Ramos claimed, he was appointed by former President Carter as a "director" at the Department of Commerce. Ramos acknowledged in an interview that he served as assistant director of research for minority business development.

"There are no presidentially appointed directors in the U.S. Department of Commerce," said Malcom Barr, the department's director of news relations. "Directors go down into middle management."

After Ramos left the Commerce Department, he worked at First Los Angeles Bank from February, 1981, to October, 1982, as "a corporate vice president in charge of corporate banking," his resume states.

"That was a mistake," Ramos said. "It's meant to (say that) I set up the IRA-Keogh programs."

Ramos also claimed that he was an assistant for public affairs to bank chairman Charles Manatt, who, the resume notes, was chairman of the National Democratic Party at the time.

Manatt said Ramos never worked for him as an assistant in any capacity.

"Public affairs was not something that I was even doing as chairman," Manatt said.

Fired by Bank

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