The following is a statement from Jason VanBorssum in response to a story about the demise of Cornerstone Animation that appeared in the AWN Flash and on the AWN.com Website on August 12, 2003. AWN is happy to present all sides as the parties make themselves available for comment.
Statement by Jason VanBorssumAugust 15, 2003
I am angered and saddened by the recent statements made about me by Larry Whitaker, owner of Cornerstone Animation in the press this week. These statements are completely false and I categorically deny them.
The recent default and breach of contract on the part of a Cornerstoneclient specifically, and more generally the state of the animation industry itself, caused Cornerstone's current situation. The claim that I left Cornerstone with any of its corporate files and financial records in my possession, or in disarray, is false and defamatory, as is the implication of financial wrongdoing on my part. In fact, I left all corporate documents properly filed, clearly labeled and neatly packed in my former office. I also surrendered all keys to Cornerstone's office and building to the company-s co-founder.
During my 3-year tenure at Cornerstone, I personally loaned the company a substantial amount of my own money -- money which was used to pay the wages of employees and contractors, as well as other corporate operating expenses in order to keep the company's doors open. In addition to loans made to Cornerstone, I am owed back wages as the company did not pay me my salary for almost 9 months, in violation of the law. The fact that I was denied my own salary for nearly 9 months did, in effect, help to pay for employee and contractor wages.
My principal reason for terminating my relationship with Cornerstone on July 28, 2003 was that the day-to-day working conditions with Larry Whitaker had become intolerable and dangerous.
I regret that Cornerstone has chosen a public forum in which to discuss these matters. I must therefore respond publicly to correct these falsehoods. I cannot and will not allow my name and reputation to be besmirched and defamed.
Note: Prior to joining Cornerstone Animation in 1999, Jason VanBorssum served as Investment Counsel with Wachovia Securities, Inc.