ProPublica and The Trace

Unearthed Audio Recording Reveals Internal Plotting Between NRA And Former Vendor In Order To Hide The Nonprofits Lavish Expenses

A twenty-three minute audio recording, obtained by ProPublica and The Trace, of a meeting between former NRA CFO Woody Phillips and executives from Ackerman McQueen offers a view into the NRA’s dealings in secrecy, as they attempted to hide luxury hotel, limousine, and private jet travel.

In order to hide extravagant expenses, such as limousine services, executives on the call agreed that NRA employee Tyler Schropp would be issued an Ackerman McQueen credit card. The bill would be paid by the PR firm, and then billed back to the NRA under vague invoices.

  • The audio recording features the NRA’s Woody Phillips, and Ackerman McQueen employees Melanie Montgomery, Hillary Farrell, and Bill Winkler.
  • CFO Woody Phillips can be heard on the recording saying: “We just have to be careful because Wayne wants to get through this whole year saying he hasn’t used private aircraft,” and that LaPierre “just doesn’t want to be seen getting off the plane — anywhere.”