Gatesway Foundation Clarifies Misleading News Article, Sets the Record Straight

Tulsa, OK, June 8, 2023 - Gatesway Foundation, a prominent nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, is issuing this press release to clarify misleading information contained in a recent news article published by the Tulsa World, with anticipation of being broadcasted by other sources.

The news article, titled "Woman pleads guilty to bank fraud involving trust accounts for Gatesway Foundation clients,” published on June 8th, 2023 misrepresents the extent of Gatesway Foundation's involvement in a Leslie Mansfield embezzlement. The Foundation asserts that the article inaccurately portrays possible employment or relationship, leading to potential confusion among the public and our valued stakeholders.

To set the record straight, Gatesway Foundation would like to provide the following clarification:

Contrary to the implications made in the article, Gatesway Foundation's involvement in the mentioned incident/initiative was strictly providing care to individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. This care does often include providing representative payee services. During our efforts to perform these services, Gatesway performs audits on a monthly basis.

As state appointed guardian, Mansfield was legally authorized to access the Special Needs Trust without oversight. There are no records that indicate Gatesway Foundation issued any payments to Mansfield.

While conducting regular audits for the individuals, Gatesway accounting staff identified trust statements provided by Mansfield as fraudulent. These third-party trust accounts were established by Mansfield who was the state appointed guardian for the five individuals served by Gatesway. Gatesway followed requirements and notified Adult Protective Services as well as the local authorities.

The relationship established through University of Tulsa Legal Aid had no affiliation with Gatesway. Leslie Mansfield claims her service on our Human Rights Committee are factual. For clarity, the Human Rights committee is a compliance standard from Oklahoma State Department of Health to operate a Long-Term Care facility. This committee does not serve in financial matters. This committee serves as an advisory on medication changes.

Gatesway Foundation is deeply committed to the individuals it serves, their families, and the wider community. The Foundation will continue to work diligently to provide exceptional services, advocate for inclusivity, and create opportunities for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities to thrive. Gatesway wants to thank all authorities and the judiciary system for holding Mansfield accountable for the exploitation. Gatesway looks forward to the commitment made by Mansfield’s attorney to repay the victims in this case.

For further information or media inquiries, please contact:

Elijah Blankenship   (He/Him)

Chief Operating Officer
Gatesway Foundation
2448 East 81st Street, Suite 5200

Tulsa, OK 74137
P: (918) 259-3585

F: (918) 259-1493