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Naples City Desk exclusive: No evidence Clerk’s manager over $600M has had annual eval since 2007

No evidence annual continuing education, violates county’s investment policy, state law

City Desk Naples-Marco Island, Florida
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Gina Edwards
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Naples City Desk exclusive: No evidence Clerk’s money manager over $600 million portfolio has had annual evaluation since 2007

By Gina Edwards

Naples City Desk


The Collier Clerk of Courts money manager who makes investment decisions regarding the county’s $600 million portfolio hasn’t had an annual performance evaluation since 2007, a copy of his personnel file obtained by Naples City Desk shows.

The personnel file, requested by Collier Commissioner Georgia Hiller in a public records request in September and obtained by Naples City Desk from the Clerk’s Office late Monday, doesn’t contain evidence that 75-year-old Clerk’s Office employee John Kannengieser, obtained eight hours of annual continuing education for at least 10 years, which is required by the county’s investment policy.

The continuing education provision in the county’s investment policy is required by state law — Florida Statute 218.415. A failure by Kannengieser to receive the annual continuing education would be a violation of the county’s investment policy, which is set by the Board of County Commissioners.

Carrying out the Board of County Commissioners’ investment policy and safeguarding the county’s hundreds of millions of dollars is the Constitutional obligation of Collier Clerk of Courts Dwight Brock, the county’s independently elected comptroller.

“It’s unacceptable,” said Commissioner Georgia Hiller, reached after hours Monday. “It goes to (Brock’s) lack of oversight and mismanagement.”

Commissioner Fred Coyle said the person who is making decisions about millions of county investments should have his performance measured. Coyle said Brock is “really casual” with the way he runs his organization.

“For a guy who is so particular about how the county staff and county commissioners do their jobs, he sure does a lot of things that are very casual,” said Coyle, a longtime critic of the way Brock conducts audits of county departments under the County Commission and County Manager.

Brock couldn’t be reached after hours Monday. Questions emailed to Brock by Naples City Desk Monday before noon about the county’s investment policy and whether the Clerk or his staff disagree with any aspects of a consultant’s evaluation of the county’s investment policy were not responded to. Collier Commissioners are scheduled to hear from consultant PFM at today’s County Commission meeting.

The consultant was hired at a cost of $2,500 to evaluate the county’s investment policy and recommend changes, following a 5-0 vote. Commissioners Hiller, Coyle and Donna Fiala supported the review and Commissioners Tom Henning and Tim Nance voted in favor after earlier expressing opposition.

Documents in the personnel file show that Kannengieser was last evaluated by Clerk’s Finance Director Crystal Kinzel in 2007. Kinzel gave Kannengieser mostly average marks, with an overall grade of 3.4 out of 5.

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“John is a valuable member of Finance,” Kinzel wrote. “We rely on his advice and expertise to manage Collier County investments and maximize return to the taxpayers. John is self reliant and addresses investment opportunities as they become available. I appreciate John’s advice and monitoring of investments to insure that the investment policy is followed and returns maximized.”

There was no evidence in Kannengieser’s personnel file that Kinzel or anyone else conducted evaluations for Kannengieser after 2007 and some ranking criteria on the 2007 evaluation were blank.

There are no annual evaluations in the personnel file for 2005 or 2006. There is an annual evaluation in 2004 conducted by former Finance Director Jim Mitchell and for 2003. There are annual evaluations for each year from 1995 to 2001 conducted by Mitchell.

The last evidence of continuing education was a self-assessment on the 2003 annual evaluation under “Personal Development” which asks the employee to “list any educational or training courses seminars etc. that you have completed since the last review.”  Kannengieser, in a handwritten note, wrote “Constantly listening to panel discussions, reading and listening to market and economic experts daily.”   

Kannengieser lives in Arizona and hasn’t been licensed with securities regulators since 1993, state regulatory records obtained by Naples City Desk show.

Kannengieser reports on his resume that he was on a two-man team who ran Chemical Bank of New York’s $6 billion bond portfolio from 1983 to 1987. He was a senior bond trader for Mitsubishi Bank from 1987 to 1989, and he managed a money market mutual fund in the 1970s and held positions at Chase Manhattan and Bank of New York.

He reported that he was a stockbroker at Shearson Lehman Brothers from “1989 to present” building a book of high net-worth clients when he submitted his resume to the Clerk’s office in 1994.

Historical regulatory records obtained by Naples City Desk show that Kannengieser was not registered as a stockbroker at Shearson Lehman Brothers in 1994 when he submitted his resume and application to Brock’s Office. Records show he was last registered at Olde Naples Securities Inc. and that the registration was terminated as of Oct. 13, 1993. Kannengieser’s registration with Lehman Brothers was ended as of Jan. 18, 1993.

In his position as the Clerk’s money manager, Kannengieser makes $85,994 a year. He’s on the payroll and records show he was paid in September.

Kannengieser isn’t currently registered as an investment advisor or a stockbroker. But state and federal securities law experts who Naples City Desk spoke to say he doesn’t have to be registered with regulators so long as he is a salaried employee advising only his employer, the Clerk.

In other words, it’s caveat emptor for the employer and the employer is accountable for supervising the actions of the employee.


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Reporting by: Gina Edwards

Dateline: Naples, Fla., Oct. 14, 2014


Contact Gina Edwards at 239-514-1336 or by email at 

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