When President Barack Obama visited Utah last Friday, he held a closed-door meeting with some very high-powered people and, allegedly, a man named Marvin who was very surprised to be in attendance.
A Reddit commenter wrote on Monday that his company thought a White House invitation was simply for someone to sit in the audience of Obama’s Utah speech. As a result, the company reportedly sent a relatively low-level employee for what ended up being a small roundtable meeting with the president.
“The Obama administration sent an invitation to his speech in Utah at Hill Air Force Base. We thought they wanted a representative from our company in the audience. Turns out they wanted the representative for a special round table with the president. Due to this mix up we sent my friend (a leader in our CAD dept) instead of the CEO,” the Reddit user wrote, including a photo of the meeting.
Other attendees included Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Rep. Rob Bishop (R-Utah), Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker (D), solar energy company owner Thaniel Bishop, and Judy Fisher, a grant coordinator at the US Department of Energy. The Reddit user suggested the unnamed colleague was relatively underdressed, with a short-sleeved shirt, because he was not expecting an intimate audience with the president.
The commenter attributed the mix-up to a lack of clear communication from the White House. The person further suggested the CAD (computer-aided design) team leader was chosen because he is in the Air Foce and Obama’s speech was partially focused on employing veterans in the solar energy industry. Another person noted that Obama’s visit to Utah was reportedly hastily-scheduled and caught local officials off guard.
“The details are a little hazy right now. I know the person responsible for the mix up is in some serious trouble. But I’m sure the CEO is kicking himself over missing this chance to meet the President,” the Reddit user added later.
It appears the unnamed colleague is Marvin Futch, who is identified in an Associated Press photo of the roundtable event and is listed as an attendee in a White House pool report. A LinkedIn profile that appears to belong to Futch further matches the Reddit description: His biography states he is in the Air National Guard and is a CAD team leader at a company called Vivint Solar.
Business Insider did not receive a response after reaching out to Vivint Solar both for comment and to see if Futch was available to discuss the meeting. The White House did not provide comment when asked about the Reddit post.
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