MINUTES OF SUBUD PNW BOARD MEETING
May 9, 2018
Members Present: Aaron Mann, Chairman PNW, Sherwin O’Bar, Treasurer, Oswald Norton, Elizabeth Flanders, Regional Helper Liaison, Reynold Orchard, Interim Chair, Subud Portland, Honora Hildreth, Chair, Subud Seattle, Michael DuBois, Chair, Skagit Valley, Lydia Tedrow, Recording Secretary. Nirel Jackson, Regional Congress Chair, came on toward the end of the meeting.
Minutes of Last Meeting
The minutes of the last two meetings, March and April, which had been received by all, were approved.
Oswald stated the Helpers’ Report was pretty light for this month because they had not had any visits and future visits will be planned by the new Regional Helper Group. The main effort of this team has been contacting and talking to potential candidates for the position of Regional Helper. They had had some success in that area. One woman pretested and will test at the Congress. They already have Rosalyn Neel and Djoharia Toor and, on the men’s side, one man is willing to test at the Congress with David Lynch, who has already tested and will be becoming a new Regional Helper after the Congress.
Elizabeth added that Djorharia is not really confirmed. She will be coming to the National Congress. If any other potential candidates wanted to step forward, they would be welcome. Two women tested and they learned one was not yet a helper, which would not be a problem but she would need a strong mentor serving with her and Rosalyn was new so it depends on who else steps forward. She asked the Committee to pass the word.
Oswald stated that, when they discussed New Business which contained Regional Congress Agenda Items, he wanted to talk about Independent Oversight and Term Limits. Honora had presented a proposal and it was not listed, it wasn’t on the agenda. Aaron said he thought it had been considered as part of the agenda at the last meeting but since it wasn’t in the minutes, it was put on the agenda for tonight. Aaron asked that somebody please bring it up so they could talk about it.
The first order of business was brought up for discussion: delegates. Aaron asked Honora if Seattle had the three delegates needed for the National Congress. She reported she had some “maybe’s”; nobody had confirmed. She plans on finding out during the next week who would be attending.
Reynold reported Portland will be sending three; two are confirmed. They had requested one more but so far the delegates are Maria Baker and Hamilton Cheifetz. Reynold is working on getting one more delegate. He stated Benjamin Boyce is currently living in Olympia and Reynold understood that Benjamin is willing to be a delegate, although he isn’t from Portland.
Reynold reported he had been speaking with Philip Lindstrom, who is moving to the PNW. He and his wife Alexandra were going to be at an airbnb for the next three weeks in the Portland region until after the Congress.
He mentioned that Montana has 18 members on the census but no delegates. Apparently Aaron sent them an email but has not heard back from them. Skagit Valley’s Michael and Serena DuBois are delegates. Portland has two delegates. Aaron stated he had not received a confirmation from Benjamin for Olympia as yet. Aaron registered as a delegate so that made six. Three more are needed. He offered to call Montana and remind them they need to send delegates.
Aaron wanted to mention that he received a registration update from Alexandra terHorst and only 35 people are registered for the Regional Congress so far, well short of a quorum. For a quorum, we need over 100. He didn’t know exactly what that means or if it means anything at all.
But he thought it meant that we can’t vote on anything without a quorum. . Michael thought the quorum issue had been addressed and there was an adjustment to the bylaws, that it had been changed to a certain percentage of the group plus one. He didn’t think there were 100 people in the entire area in Subud. He thought there would be enough people in terms of electing a new committee. Aaron said he tried to do a census but it wasn’t complete. There were 227 active members in the Region. However, Alexandra said a lot of people didn’t check the box for Regional Congress so more people may be present.
Reynold – or Oswald – said he had the answer. The bylaws stated: “a quarum is, for any meeting of the members, those members who attend the meeting and those represented by proxy.” That’s what is says for Regional Congress Annual Meeing. No numbers. Board of Directors have to have 2/3 of the voting members. For groups, it has to be a minimum of 5 or 15%.
There was a discussion about how long the Congress would be going on. Michael said a new Committee needs to be selected and he thought that the only two positions that were tested were Chair and Vice Chair. Secretary and Treasurer were appointed. It could happen quickly or take a long time, depending on the testing. Aaron said that the entire day had been set aside for it.
Oswald stated that one of the hopes of putting together a preliminary agenda was to map that process out. Latihan will be from 9:00 to 10:30 a.m. so the earliest the Congress can start is around 10:30. Reynold stated he was looking at the schedule, which is on line; from 10:30 to 12:30 and 1:30 to 5:00 so that is practically all day. There will reports from each of the Centers, and the Regional Helper report. Then there are proposals. That takes up a good part of the morning and leaving, hopefully, enough time before the lunch break, to put them forward and have them accepted for the testing, which would then occur after lunch. So it depended on how much time the reports and the proposals took up in the morning. From a planning prospective – there are rooms set out and, should the time be needed, they had it.
Aaron stated that, since he won’t be chairing the meeting, he hadn’t been thinking about the agenda that much. Honora reported that she received news that Nelson would be a delegate. A discussion ensued about how many delegates are needed and there are nine to date, including Aaron. Ten are not necessarily required but a backup delegate would be nice.
Oswald and Elizabeth wanted to hear reports from the Centers, anything brief. Aaron asked if the Centers had anything to report.
Reynold reported the Portland group had a meeting three days ago. That was his first meeting as Interim Chairman. Michael Clemes had been tested in a month ago and he thought he might be able to take over in the Fall but he wants to retest. So, as Chairman, for now, Reynold feels strongly about separating functions of Committee and Helpers so he is stepping down as a helper and he also insists that Committee people are not helpers so they are actively looking for a new Treasurer who is not a helper. Also, Marilyn Schirk will continue as Secretary with minutes only but not a full committee member and Ron Leash as Vice Chair.
Hermine Berenger will be liaison between the Portland group and the National Congress members, helping with things Portland can do, transportation, that kind of thing. Portland raised a lot of money for SD lately and got New York to match it. They had a silent auction and raised something like $1600. They are doing well with Susila Dharma, largely thanks to Marilyn. They sent $2000 off for an international travel fund for third world countries. Marius Harold was very impressed with what the need was for Cuba. And, apparently 14 members from Portland are going to the National Congress and only one or two need funding.
Honora stated she didn’t have a whole lot to report from the Seattle group. 100% of their attention has been focused to get everything sorted with their tax status – they just want to make sure that everything is above board with the lawyer and they have been speaking with a lawyer, basically. The last meeting was completely consumed by that and then there was a little bit of talk about events going on in the area. Jim is working with the lawyer and they are trying to figure out how much help they will need from him and how much money they need to budget.
Michael reported the group had a lovely kejiwaan day at Marius Hibbard’s house on Sunday. They had barbequed salmon and, as everybody knows, the group is famous for its food. The women did testing, as did the men. They try to have a kejiwaan day once a month on a Sunday. They’ve done work on their house. Michael stated they are sending people to the International Congress. Probably Julia Hurd and perhaps Marius Hibbard is planning on going. Rosalyn is trying to work out a way to get there.
Michael reported that there will be a Memorial at Seattle’s Center at 1:30 in the afternoon this coming Saturday for Rainer Burrows. There will be good food and people to celebrate Rainer’s life.
Marius and Michael are planning to educate kids with marbling classes. He would like to find out who is in charge of the gift shop at the National Congress, if there is one, because he would like to bring a few things to sell to raise money for the group. Noril stated that the gift shop would be managed by Halima Taylor; Michael can contact Halima.
Michael asked if Honora wanted to talk about her proposal; she did and Oswald asked if she wanted him to read it, to give the title. Oswald stated, for those who are interested, he is able to edit and publish things on our PNW website. He published this proposal today on the website so the delegates have a chance to read it before the Congress actually happens and he is also willing and able to put those on the website.
The title of Honora’s proposal is Leadership Training for all Local and Regional Committee positions. In summary, the idea is – not that it be discussed or worked out in the Congress – but that there be a group established with representatives from each of the Centers and from the Region to talk about what would be some training components for people who are new to the job that would help them to be successful. In essence, that is the summary of the proposal. More can be read on the website.
Also, for those who are putting together proposals, Oswald was trying to figure out how he could put together a proposal that had components easy to understand and he found a proposal format published by a university and that was what he sent out on Monday in case other people who were putting together proposals were interested in using a format. An example was the proposal which was published earlier.
Aaron stated he had two discussion topics; one is independent oversight and the other is term limits. He wants to write his thinking on those two things and perhaps Oswald could put it up. Oswald agreed he would publish it; he thought if it was published ahead of time it would take less time to discuss it.
Aaron asked if anybody else had any other discussion topics. Michael said he would like to see a concerted effort made to broaden our activity schedule for the summer. Right now, he noted, we don’t have any events scheduled that are family friendly. Menucha is wonderful but we don’t bring our kids there. It would be nice to be able to encourage our younger members to feel financially comfortable to come to family events in the summertime. He would like to see a group come together to discuss that lack and what we can do to try to solve it. Honora stated we used to have summer camp but attendance went down and we couldn’t afford it anymore so we had to stop it. Michael said we should try to solve that problem, maybe find things that are more affordable. We are all getting older and there aren’t many young people in Subud and no events to attract them – just an idea. Michael did not want us doomed to be a shrinking region.
Aaron said he wanted a title for this so it could be an agenda item. So, he asked Michael to give him a title or something – Michael came up with Family Friendly Activities for Subud Members. Aaron stated he had four agenda items: Independent Oversight, Term Limits, Leadership Training for all Local and Regional Committee Positions, and Family Friendly Activities for Subud Members.
Oswald then asked Nirel if she had a proposal, he remembered she mentioned something last time. He asked if she wanted to voice it at this time. She stated she spoke to Amelia and she thought this time she should observe and just listen and learn this time. She is working on a documentary; she wants to interview people about their experience of latihan in Subud. She keeps hearing we’re an aging group and not bringing new people in that much and wants to know how we address that. She had some concerns about how we share about Subud and how we represent ourselves in the world. She knows peoples’ lives are full and busy – people value the latihan and most people agree it makes everything better. It is a good thing and enriches life. She stated: “So, how do we share about it as an entity, as well, as a bigger entity? There is a lot of community outreach. There are a lot of beautiful things that Subud International does around the world and I wanted to do some local outreach and I manage the enterprise at the house. People ask me all the time – what is Subud? And so, I guess I would like to have that conversation in a bigger group.”
Nirel was asked: “Shall we call the item ‘Outreach’”? “Yes. Sure” Nirel said: “Community Outreach, maybe”. That was item five.
Another item under New Business would be selecting new officers, Chair and Vice Chair, by testing. Also, Michael noted, we have to select our next Regional Congress Chair as well.
So the Committee now has seven items, in no particular order. For the Regional Congress, Leandra will be the secretary. That is confirmed.
Honora asked to be excused as she was in the middle of a birthday celebration with her family. She was excused and Happy Birthdays, of a sort, were sung to her.
Aaron asked Nirel if there was anything she needed from the Committee at this time. She responded she just needed the Agenda. Aaron said there is a basic format; he would make sure Nirel got it in plenty of time. Nirel asked if there were any more meetings and the response was that this was it. No more.
Meeting was Adjourned:
There was no new business to bring up so a motion to adjourn the meeting was moved and seconded. All were in favor and the meeting ended.
Signed by the Recording Secretary, Lydia Tedrow.