Judge Rules in Favor of Hope Rising

March 10, 2021

Judge Rules in Favor of Hope Rising

335th District Court Judge Dismisses All Derivative Claims by Terminated Executive Director


Brenham, TX -- On March 1, 2021, the 335th District Court in Washington County determined that Sherri Clement, a former executive director of Hope Rising, had no standing to bring the derivative action that she filed in the name of Hope Rising against its board members.  

Judge Carson Campbell dismissed all derivative claims that Clement filed against the board members personally and their attorney, Tracey Conwell.  These claims were dismissed with prejudice to Clement filing them again.

“Sherri Clement was terminated as executive director from Hope Rising on August 21, 2020, and since that time has continued presenting herself as if she had the authority to speak for Hope Rising.  She has no authority to speak on our behalf and no authority to keep any of the business property and animals belonging to the Hope Rising.” explained Pastor Tim Webb, Hope Rising board chairman. 

In the last six months, Hope Rising has made measurable progress in strengthening the organization and its programs, as well as in developing the Stabilization and Assessment Center for minor survivors of sex trafficking in New Caney.  This work has been made possible under the leadership of the Hope Rising Board of Directors, Interim Executive Director, Lidya Kushner, a non-profit expert in building high-performing organizations and Cynthia Borsellino, an accounting professional who is a survivor of trafficking herself.    

Hope Rising’s attorney presented the court with a more than 300-page report detailing Clément’s mismanagement and violations in all aspects of Hope Rising’s organization.  Sherri Clement also applied to the Texas Secretary of State to change the name of Hope Rising Foundation, Inc., which is a support organization that belongs to Hope Rising.   Hope Rising objects to this attempt to convert its foundation for personal purposes.  Hope Rising and its board are pursuing legal redress for the many Hope Rising assets, including, the Foundation, livestock, and online business accounts that Clement converted to her personal possession when she was terminated and has failed to return.

To speak with the Chair of the Board of Directors regarding this press release, please reach out to Pastor Tim Webb at (979) 277-9090.

For further information about Hope Rising, a 501(c)(3) religious nonprofit organization dedicated to providing therapeutic wrap-around services to minor survivors of sex trafficking, go to hoperisingusa.org, the official Hope Rising website. 

To learn more about becoming a foster family, volunteering, or donating to Hope Rising, please call 979-399-5055 or e-mail info@hoperisingusa.org.

To view the public reports submitted to the court, see below.