Board Meeting, Minutes - November 9th, 2014

Chippewa Valley Civil Liberties Union

Board Meeting Minutes for November 9, 2014

Herrick and Hart Law Office, 116 Grand Ave., Eau Claire

Present: Myron Buchholz, Ann Heywood (recording), Marni Kaiser, Mildred Larson, David Rice, Mahmoud Taman, Stephanie Turner, (presiding), Paul Wagner

Absent: Sara Thielen. After Heidi Sanders’ election to the board, she declined to take the position.

  1. Stephanie called the meeting to order at 6:30 p.m.

  2. The minutes of the August 18 meeting were approved as emailed.

  3. David reported a balance in our treasury of $899.54 following payments for newsletter copying ($49.64) and room rental at library ($45), and receipts for Pizza Plus dinners ($120), new member rebate (($60) and one donation ($50). The board approved reimbursement to David for expenses at Pizza Plus and to Stephanie for hotel room rental for annual meeting speaker.

  4. The board discussed various details of the annual meeting and presentation by Julie Mead, Professor, Department of Educational Leadership & Policy Analysis, School of Education, University of WisconsinMadison. Dr. Mead made engaging presentations to two education classes at the university and had lunch with university faculty. She attended the Pizza Plus dinner party. Her presentation on “Public Schools and Privatization: What’s at Stake?” in the Eau Claire Room at the library attracted about 70 people. We felt the information was very clear and worthwhile. Partnering with ECAE-R helped tremendously in planning and advertising the program.

We had very poor attendance at the pizza supper and lost about $33 by ordering too much food ahead. In the future we would do better to simply order pizza as regular customers. Or for a fundraiser, we would have to ask for reservations ahead and perhaps return to a classier venue like Houligans. The pizza supper idea still seems appealing and we are unclear about exactly why it did so poorly. The extra food was delivered to Sojourner House.

Only five people attended the annual meeting at the library before the public presentation. We need to improve on that too. Probably we need to make telephone calls to get our members out to our supper, meeting, and program. Newsletter is not enough.

  1. The board discussed election of the officers since our recent bylaws change requires a two-year commitment for each office. We also discussed whether we should have a maximum number of board members and competitive elections. The board agreed that since our board members are in effect the people we can recruit who are willing to meet and be activists in our chapter, there is no need to have competitive elections at this time. Our bylaws require a minimum of nine members, and having several more does not pose a problem.

The following board members were nominated and unanimously elected as our 2015 -2017 officers: Stephanie Turner – president, Paul Wagner – vice-president, David Rice – treasurer, and Ann Heywood – secretary.

  1. Ann gave the state board report with information about the fee sharing arrangements between ACLU national, state, and chapter and on the importance of recruiting new members. Her report will be emailed separately.

  2. The board decided to return to a regular meeting schedule—the third Sunday of the odd numbered months at 6:30 p.m. Meetings can be cancelled or replaced by work committee meetings as needed. Meetings this year are scheduled for January 18, March 15, May 17, July 19, September 20, and November 15. The annual meeting will be in September or October.

  3. The board agreed that chapter expenses should not fall to individual board members, but rather be paid out of the treasury. Officers should submit their out-of-pocket expenses. Donations are welcome but separate from expenses.

  4. Stephanie brought to our attention an invitation to a meeting of Cities for the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) to be held Monday, Nov. 10 on the UW-EC campus. This organization will provide opportunity for students to look at public policy and engage in local activism. Myron agreed to attend the meeting and report back to us.

  5. Ann reported on the Banned Books Week celebration, held on September 24. Isa Small, program director at the library, did introductions and told about the process of challenging books. Ann gave a short history of the ACLU fighting censorship. About 8 students read passages from challenged books and each told how their book had been important to them. Here again, the audience was disappointingly small, perhaps 15 or so. Nonetheless, the participants have gained more awareness of the issue. What can we do to grow this annual celebration?

11. The board discussed the drone issue again in the light of Chippewa County Sheriff’s Department acquiring a drone (reported in Leader Telegram October 22). Paul will gather information about the situation and get a copy of the ordinance we presented to the Eau Claire City Council two years ago. Probable follow-up will be a meeting with Sheriff Kowalszyk. Stephanie, Paul, Myron, and Mahmoud are interested in the meeting.