In Chabad centers the rabbi has the final word. For years synagogue rabbis followed the directions of their board members, giving into pressure and moving away from tradition. In Chabad centers, the rabbi sets the tone for religious observance. That direction is based in Halacha and the congregants know it cannot be compromised.
Which is why Jews involved in Chabad centers are moving toward Judaism, and not away from it. Chabad rabbis encourage more observance, not less. People are challenged to grow in their Judaism. For an outsider such as Marvin Schick the positive change may be difficult to see. It may be slow, but it is occurring - mitzva by mitzva.