Shelter operator cited for prudence still receives millions of dollars in city funds

At one point, the group also hired an outside company owned by Raymond Okebiyi, Okayson Consultants, to provide technology services, according to company filings and city records. Okebiyi said the nonprofit used his brother’s firm from 2007 to 2020, but he declined to say how much the consulting firm was paid.

The group also included Raymond Okebiyi’s wife, Onyekwere Onwumere, as a board member and, in 2020, hired Mr. Okebiyi nephew as a worker at one of its shelters. Mr. Okebiyi said that his nephew no longer works for the corporation and that he had no role in recruiting him.

Okebiyi’s relatives benefited in other ways. Between 2012 and 2016, the group paid a sports shoe company run by Michael, another brother of Mr Okebiyi, to provide “tech support”, resumes and interviews problem shows. Mr. Okebiyi said the payments to the company totaled “less than $20,000 a year.”

The African-American Planning Commission even hired a firm Okebiyi founded himself, Lafayette Consultants, to also “consult technology” and make payments to the business through 2019, according to its filings. city.

It is unclear whether Mr. Okebiyi disclosed ownership of his company before the nonprofit selected it as a contractor, according to city regulations. Mr. Okebiyi told The Times that the payments to the company translate into compensation he received as chief executive of the group.

In 2017, as the number of homeless people in the city was growing, the group sought to expand from domestic violence services to operating other types of shelters.

It won lucrative new contracts and grew rapidly, with Mr. Okebiyi’s salary skyrocketing. He earned more than $532,000 a year in 2019, tax records show – one of the highest salaries paid of any nonprofit executive in New York that year. Shelter operator cited for prudence still receives millions of dollars in city funds

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