CAMBRIA COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — Johnstown’s Vision Together 2025 (Vision) President and CEO Mike Tedesco has resigned from the nonprofit organization following months of scrutiny.

Tedesco was hired in February 2021 after a nationwide search to help lead Vision, an organization that focuses on the renewal and growth of Johnstown, forward. He was hired due to his experience in urban planning and government administration.

Former Vision Together 2025 President and CEO Mike Tedesco

However, the organization confirmed on Sept. 21 that he is no longer working for them.

Vision has been under scrutiny from elected officials, such as State Rep. Frank Burns (D-Cambria), over its “leaked secret plans” to bring up to 100 Afghanistan refugee families into Cambria County. In February, Burns cited a November 2021 memo that detailed the organization’s proposed plan that sought state and federal funding. An early draft memo was also obtained by Burn, which “described a call with the White House” that allegedly took place on Nov. 8.

Tedesco said their proposal was mostly investigative and explored the possibility of bringing legally vetted immigrants to Johnstown to help combat the area’s population loss and fill hundreds of open jobs.

Vision Together 2025 is working to transition Johnstown into a 21st-century city. We celebrate and embrace diversity. All are welcome in Cambria County, and I’m afraid it’s not a legislative decision who lays down the welcome mat – it’s up to church basements, civic groups, non-profits, and people of good will. Furthermore, manufacturing controversy that creates a perception that Cambria County is an unwelcoming and racist place does nothing but harm our image around the world. I invite all those who are attempting to score cheap political points based on racist tropes to look toward the future and actually join Vision Together’s conversation regarding how to create it. All are welcome in Cambria County and all are welcome at Vision Together.

Former President and CEO of Vision Together 2025 Mike Tedesco said in a January statement

In March, Burns released a statement that highlighted specific elements of a new, elaborate “Human Capital Plan” document crafted and put into motion by Vision. According to Burns, the plan explained various steps that Vision planned to explore including finding a relocation agency, open job listings, education and language services as well as communications to welcome immigrants.

Burns subsequently called on Vision to open board meetings to the public.

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“Clearly, the public deserves more detail on all of those initiatives, too,” Burns said in a March statement. “If this is the tip of the iceberg in terms of what’s been going on behind the scenes, then Vision’s credibility is on course to sink faster than the Titanic.”

Then, in April, Burns accused Vision of being weeks away from accepting refugees into Cambria County, citing emails from Vision/Tedesco that date back to October 2021. Burns alleged that the emails mention that he was “manufacturing controversy” and harming Cambria County’s image by calling for transparency from Vision.

“As a state representative who is accountable to the people, I set out to independently gauge the depth and progress of Vision’s plan,” Burns said in an April statement. “I suspected Vision was bypassing elected officials and the public by going directly to the Department of Human Services — and that certainly appears to be the case.”

Burns is now applauding Tedesco’s resignation from Vision, claiming that Tedesco “misled the public” and “more transparency is needed.”

“Tedesco’s public pronouncements did not mesh with what he was saying in private — or with the reality of how far advanced Vision’s refugee recruitment effort actually was,” Burns said. “This duplicity undercut not only his credibility with the public; it tarnished Vision’s credibility as well.”

Burns also stated that if he hadn’t filed a Right-to-Know request with the state Department of Human Services, which yielded the emails, then the “Human Capital Plan” would have been “implemented with the public kept in the dark.”

“The big takeaway from this debacle is that no organization should be playing ‘hide-and-seek’ with the public when it comes to the scope, impact, and cost of the projects it is developing and promoting,” Burns said. “They need to be upfront and open about their plans and the potential impacts on our community, housing and schools — that’s how you build true consensus and public support.”

WTAJ has reached out to Tedesco for comment, though the call was not immediately returned.

FULL COVERAGE OF VISION TOGETHER 2025’S REFUGEE PLAN: