He left quickly and under a cloud of suspicion. A lawsuit filed by former hotel owner, Karon Mitchel, accused the now former Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce [MBACC] C.E.O., Brad Dean, of funneling over one hundred million dollars to companies set up by Dean and former MBACC employees.
Dean relocated to the protectorate of Puerto Rico claiming his love for that area devastated by Hurricane Maria. Dean’s wife is Puerto Rican.
This week, MyrtleBeachSC news received a “heads up” about the street sign dedication by text message. We are unaware of any public celebrations or other news concerning the street dedication.
At first, we thought we were being spoofed. Dean was never a big fan of our reporting. He said so publicly during his first press conference in Puerto Rico, making those statements to the entire nation.
We drove the streets of Yaupon, Chester, and Flagg looking for the sign. It was nowhere to be found.
It was when we made the turn at Joe White driving towards Oak Street, just across from the Ted C. Collins building, we spotted the sign’s dedication on Oak Street.
The tip line for our news organization gets constant messages informing us that Visibility and Conversions front man, Bill Rosenthal is just that. Visibility and Conversions is an LLC set up on Legal Zoom. Informants tell us Rosenthal actually owns very little of the business. We are continually told the firm’s actual owners are a local hotel group partnered with a local advertising firm. Mitchel’s lawyers have yet to break the LLC shield, however.
MAYOR BETHUNE, REF– USES TO REVEAL TRUE OWNERS OF VISIBILITY & CONVERSIONS.
At 50% markup, the firm put $30 million in tax dollar profits directly in their pockets.
We FOIA’D the city and Mayor Brenda Bethune asking her to make the public aware of who the actual owners of the firm were. At the time of the lawsuit, the city and MBACC had forked over $60 million to Visibility and Conversions. The contract between Visibility and Conversions and MBACC was never put out for bids. The City and Mayor Bethune refused to make the true owners’ identities public.
Like the rest of Myrtle Beach, MyrtleBeachSC news awaits the coming trial for news on who actually owns Visibility & Conversions. We also wait to see if a public celebration of the street’s dedication is held.