Former Springdale Rotary Executive Accused Of Embezzlement

SPRINGDALE (KFSM) — The former executive director of the Springdale Rotary Club is accused of embezzling roughly $245,000 from the service organization, including spending more than $88,000 on herself via the club’s credit card.

Courtney Palfreeman, 40, of Weatherford, Texas, was arrested Thursday (July 5) in connection with theft of property, fraudulent use of a credit card and forgery — all felonies.

Springdale police said Palfreeman turned herself in, but she declined to speak to investigators after hiring an attorney.

An internal audit covering July 2017 to June 2018 revealed approximately $245,000 was missing from Rotary Club accounts, with Palfreeman spending $88,000 on the club’s credit card for personal use. She also forged names on club checks and financial records, according to an arrest report.

A Rotarian said Palfreeman admitted to stealing from the club after board members confronted her last summer about money missing from some non-profit accounts.

The Rotarian said Palfreeman admitted what she did was wrong and said she would pay back the money, according to the report.

Palfreeman was a member of the Springdale Rotary Club from 2003 to 2017, serving as an executive for 12 years, according to Karen Talbot Gean, club president.

Talbot said the club is “deeply saddened by (Palfreeman’s) actions … but we are committed to continuing the good work in Springdale and around the world that our club has been engaged in since 1925.”

Palfreeman is free on a $2,500 bond. She has a hearing set for Aug. 3 in Washington County Circuit Court.