Broward News

UPDATED: Why Frank Biden Is "President" of SoFla Charter School Chain

UPDATE: In a report filed with the state on December 5 -- two weeks after New Times broke this story-- Biden is listed as president of Mavericks in Education Florida, and Attkisson is vice president.

Nov. 25, 2011: Since we first introduced you to a Fort Lauderdale charter school chain headed by Vice President Joe Biden's brother, alert readers have  raised an important question. Why, if Frank Biden is president of Mavericks in Education Florida, does his name not appear on any documents the company has filed with Florida's secretary of state?

Good question. Complicated answer.

The president listed on official documentation is Frank Attkisson, a former state representative and current county commissioner in Osceola.

However, Biden says that he is president and director of development for Mavericks. His name isn't listed on documents, he says, because Mavericks is in the middle of litigation with its

former CEO, Mark Thimmig, who helped found the company in 2007 and still has a 30 percent ownership interest in Mavericks.

Once the legal issues are resolved, Mavericks will reorganize its corporate structure, and Biden says he will have "skin in the game." For now, the founding Mavericks managers, such as real-estate broker Lauren Hollander, are more involved in running daily operations. Biden, who just got involved with Mavericks two years ago, gives speeches, visits schools, and lobbies local school boards to approve more Mavericks charters.

Both Biden and Attkisson are also registered with the Florida Legislature as lobbyists for Mavericks.

"I'm a salesman," Biden says. "I'm nothing but a P.T. Barnum for these kids."

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Lisa Rab
Contact: Lisa Rab