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    10000001218 10000001218 Document Transcript

    • IN THE UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF DELAWARE In re Chapter 11 CORDILLERA GOLF CLUB, LLC 1 dba The Club at Cordillera, Case No. 12-11893 (CSS) Debtor. DECLARATION OF DANIELL. FITCHETT, JR. IN SUPPORT OF THE DEBTORS OMNIBUS OBJECTION TO THE MOTIONS TO TRANSFER VENUE AND/OR RELATED JOINDERS FILED BY (I) CHERYL M. FOLEY, THOMAS WILNER, JANE WILNER, CHARLES JACKSON, MARY JACKSON AND KEVIN B. ALLEN, INDIVIDUALLY AND AS REPRESENTATIVES OF A CERTIFIED CLASS OF MEMBERS, (II) ALPINE BANK, (III) CORDILLERA PROPERTY OWNERS ASSOCIATION, INC. AND CORDILLERA METROPOLITAN DISTRICT I, DanielL. Fitchett, Jr., declare under penalty of perjury, the following: 1. I am the Chief Executive Officer ("CEO") for Cordillera Golf Club, LLC (the "Debtor" or the "Club"), a position I have held since March 1, 2012. Prior to my employment with the Debtor, and thmughout my career for much of the last 30 years, I have been involved in the real estate management and related finance business in Colorado for much of the last 30 years. My curriculum vitae is attached hereto as Exhibit "A" and incorporated herein by reference. 2. Unless otherwise stated, I have personal knowledge of the facts stated herein. 3. As the CEO, I am responsible for the day-to-day affairs of the Debtor and its operations. Since the filing of the within Chapter by the Debtor 11 case and the employment of Alfred H. Siegel as the Debtors Chief Reorganization Officer (the "CRO"), it is anticipated that 1 The Debtor in this chapter 11 case, and the last four digits of its employer tax identification number, is XX- :XXX1317. The corporate headquarters address for the Debtor is 97 Main Street, Suite E202, Edwards, Colorado 81632.4823-7931-6752.1
    • the CRO will have a significant role in developing the strategic business, financing and plandecisions regarding the Debtors reorganization plan. In my role, I have been and will continueto work with the CRO, in consultation with the Debtors professional advisors, to collaborativelyin developing a successful business plan and restructuring strategy for the Debtor. Prior to myemployment with the Debtor, I was aware of the acrimonious nature of the dispute between theformer club members, on the one hand, and the Debtors ownership, on the other. Indeed, theanimus toward the Debtor and its management has lead certain club members to distributebumper stickers and t-shirts to the community displaying ad hominem attacks on the Debtorsownership, David Wilhelm. 4. Upon my employment with the Club, I expressed to ownership that I did notbelieve, based upon my 30-year history in real estate finance and management, that a Colorado-based bank would loan money to the Debtor, especially in light ofthe degree of hostilityexpressed toward ownership by a small group of former members. 5. In my role as CEO, I participated in many internal meetings and revieweddocuments concerning the Debtors negotiations with Alpine Bank for an extension of theexisting Alpine Bank loan. In short, despite our best efforts, Alpine Bank was unwilling toextend the due date of the loan on terms that were remotely possible for the Debtor. 6. Moreover, in my role as CEO, I participated in many internal meetings andreviewed documents concerning the Debtors attempts this past Spring to secure take-out, orpotential Debtor-in-Possession financing, for the Debtor. I and others on behalf of the Debtormet with executives from a privately-owned Colorado bank to discuss potential financingoptions. However, the Debtors financing efforts with this privately-owned Colorado bank were 2
    • rejected and the Debtor was advised that it would be hopeless to find financing in Coloradogiven the Debtors current circwnstances. 7. Once it became clear to the Debtor that its financing options in Colorado wereextremely limited, if any existed at all, the Debtors management decided the prudent course wasto retain a professional real estate advisory firm to assist it in soliciting and/or procuringalternative financing arrangements and/or developing a business plan and restructuring strategy.After interviewing real estate advisors on the West Coast, East Coast and in the Southeast, theDebtor retained GA Keen Realty Advisors ("Keen") with Harold Bordwin acting as the Debtorsprincipal advisor. Within two-weeks of Keens engagement, Mr. Bordwin produced three NewYorlc-based lenders that were willing to provide debtor-in-possession financing on termsacceptable to the Debtor and expressed interest in potential financing that to satisfy the Debtorsindebtedness to Alpine Bank. 8. Mr. Bordwins procurement of East Coast financing- within days of hisengagement- when no such financing was available in the local Colorado lending market ftu1herinformed the belief by the Debtors management that the re-financing and potential restructuringof the Debtors business would come from sources outside Colorado. Indeed, I do not believethere is a Colorado banlc that would have provided the DIP financing, or would have discussed"take-out" reorganization financing with the Debtor at that time. 9. Given the financing interest generated through Keens efforts, I believe theDebtors best opportunity for a successful, financial rehabilitation hinges upon the developingrelationships with its potential New York-based financial partners. Indeed, I understand that theDebtors proposed debtor-in-possession lender, Southlight Trust I, suppo1is the Debtors venuechoice ofDelaware. 3
    • 10, In addition to the foregoing, I believe the Debtors bankruptcy case should remainin Delaware for several reasons. First, the Debtors state of origination is and has always beenDelaware. Second, over 50% of the Debtors Vendors owed money, and over two-thirds (66%)ofthe Debtors members, are located or reside outside of Colorado. Finally, given the scope ofthe litigation involving the Debtor and the club members pending in the Vail, Colorado area, ifthis case is transfeiTed to Colorado, the Debtor is uncertain it could find local bankruptcy counselin Colorado that is both free from conflicts of interest and sufficiently experienced in chapter 11banhuptcy work to assist in the prosecution of tllis bankmptcy case. I declare under penalty of pe1jury that the foregoing is true and correct and that {~ this declaration is executed this JL_ day of July, 2012, at Colorado. Name: Daniel L. Fitchett, Jr. Title: ChiefExecutive Officer 4