Campaign Treasurer: Macatee Returned Prohibited $10,000 Contribution

Highland Park ISD Place 1 trustee candidate Kelli Macatee’s campaign treasurer said Monday the campaign returned a $10,000 donation from a nonprofit — the Rowling Foundation. 

Nonprofits are prohibited from donating to political campaigns, according to the IRS

“It was just a mistake,” Macatee’s campaign treasurer Bob Jenevein said. “We didn’t expect to receive a check from a foundation.”

Jenevein added that the Rowlings wrote a personal check that will be reflected in the next campaign finance report.

The Rowling Foundation seeks to “be a resource for financial assistance, consultative ministry, and prayer support to those organizations committed to the cause of Christ,” according to the website. 

An email to the contact listed on the Rowling Foundation’s website bounced back.

Macatee said the donation was sent from the wrong account.

“The second we realized what happened, we returned (the money) to the foundation,” she said. “It was an honest mistake.”

According to her first campaign finance report, she received a total of $42,030 in political contributions from Feb. 16 until March 22, the largest of which was the $10,000 Rowling Foundation donation.  Macatee confirmed during a Highland Park Education Foundation forum April 7 that Robert and Terry Rowling were her largest donors to date.

Her opponent Doug Woodward received a total of $15,005.55 in total contributions from Jan. 16 until March 31, according to his report.

Macatee works in real estate and Woodward is Crossmark vice president of sales strategy and operations.

The election to fill Highland Park ISD board president Jim Hitzelberger’s seat in the only contested HPISD school board race is May 1.

Rachel Snyder

Rachel Snyder, deputy editor at People Newspapers, joined the staff in 2019, returning to her native Dallas-Fort Worth after starting her career at community newspapers in Oklahoma. One of her stories won first place in its category in the Oklahoma Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest in 2018. She’s a fan of puns and community journalism, not necessarily in that order. You can reach her at rachel.snyder@peoplenewspapers.com

4 thoughts on “Campaign Treasurer: Macatee Returned Prohibited $10,000 Contribution

  • April 5, 2021 at 4:59 pm
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    “The second we realized it,” came after some observers recognized the illegality of that donation after Macatee’s campaign released her numbers and pointed it out on social media. Otherwise, betcha $10,000 it wouldn’t have been returned. And, lucky are the Rowlands that they have so much money they get confused on which account to write checks from. This kind of money buys influence and HPISD students, teachers, parents, faculty, staff and administration DO NOT NEED Trustees that are indebted to big donors like the Rowlands and Westcotts who both have very vocal personal agendas. Note to Westcotts: If you don’t like public school curriculum, send your kids to a private school, the uniforms will look great on Real Housewives of Dallas.

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    • April 6, 2021 at 12:30 pm
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      but of course separation of church and state did not bother little macatee one bit.

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  • April 6, 2021 at 11:45 am
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    This realtor and pretend psychologist (unlicensed) who has never bothered to serve on a single PTA committee, HPISD committee, HPEF committee or anything else school-related cannot be trusted to manage her own campaign funds without running afoul of the law, but she wants you to trust her with the almost 200M HPISD operating budget. Hilarious. If you vote for this dimwit you will get exactly what you deserve, all because “mask oppression” was a much bigger issue than the over 100M our district loses in recapture funds each year. In true “parkie” style we will burn down the forest because we don’t like the looks of one tree.

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  • April 6, 2021 at 6:49 pm
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    Oversight and a basic understanding of financial rules and regulations are critical to the role of trustee. This isn’t a mistake , this is a disqualifier! Experience matters.

    Reply

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