HANOVER, N.H. — The former executive director of a New Hampshire nonprofit formed to aid military veterans was charged with theft Wednesday after authorities determined that she had used tens of thousands of dollars in donations for a cruise, a home heating system and stipends for herself and her children.
Danielle Goodwin, who formerly headed Project VetCare, was arrested at her Hanover home and released on bail. She is scheduled to appear in court on Oct. 16.
Last week, Attorney General Gordon MacDonald said Goodwin, 46, used the organization’s bank account “as her own.” The nonprofit was put into receivership while its assets were being liquidated.
Authorities said Goodwin “exercised unauthorized control” of more than $24,600 while serving as the charity’s executive director. They said she diverted money to pay for a vacation on Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, a new heating system at her home, “stipend payments” to herself and her children and a loan to her son.
The investigation also found that the organization’s donations had been tapped to pay for a Toyota van for a Project VetCare cofounder, and a stipend payment to his daughter. Funds also were used for a loan to Goodwin’s husband.
Goodwin must to pay back $90,000 upon the sale of her home.
It wasn’t immediately known if she had a lawyer and a phone number couldn’t be found for her.
“Some leaders of this charity enriched themselves at the expense of the veterans they were entrusted to help,” MacDonald said last week.
Project VetCare’s organizers had said they aided hundreds of veterans with accessing health benefits, fighting evictions and home foreclosures, and other matters.
This story has been corrected to show the spelling of Danielle Goodwin’s first name is Danielle, not Daniellle, and that she is the former executive director, not the executive director.