Board Meeting Minutes Coffee Party USA

INCITE CIVILITY AND REASON

Month: April, 2012

April 18, 2012

by JKL

CALL TO ORDER AND NOTE OF ATTENDANCE
Our Maestro conference call meeting was called to order by President Eric Byler at 5:02 pm PST.  Other directors present included: Secretary Jeanene Louden, Craig Dunigan, Jose Gutierrez, Christopher Ritter, and Egberto Willies. Directors missing the call included Treasurer Eric Whinery, and Frank Kirkwood.  Staff on the call included Executive Director Debilyn Molineaux and Membership Director Billy Sears. We opened the call with 30 second check-ins.

WEBSITE BREAKDOWN
As a current events issue, the Coffee Party USA web site has been down most of the day and the resolution is not near. Our level of problem solving focused on our previously identified problem that our system has been too dependent on too few people with high level skills that most volunteers and staff do not have, affording failures like the one today. Our commitment to the new system outlined by the Internet Infrastructure Work Group was underscored. While the change will be an adjustment to our members and followers, it will be liberating to system volunteers and technologically elegant. HOORAY!

MEETING MINUTES
All meeting minutes are up to date and posted. I let everyone know I have added a page to the blog called MEMBERSHIP that includes a link to the CoffeePartyUSA website. This compliments my newsletter article encouraging members and followers to visit and “follow” our minutes blog in WordPress. I also requested that all board and staff “follow” this blog so that everyone will see any comments made.

FINANCIAL REPORT
Debilyn gave the report for Eric W who was unable to attend the call. The focus of the report today was tracking membership, converting all past financial information to a unified presentation, and the need to change our bank.

Membership
Debilyn reported on her recent email to those whose memberships have recently expired. Her email gave folks the chance to renew or give us feedback as to why they chose not to renew. We received a favorable renewal response as well as great non renewal feedback.

Unified Financial Records
As a part of the effort to codify our internal controls, it became clear that we need to bring all financial information from the inception of the Coffee Party to one, easily accessed place. All previous records have been called in, regardless of format. Treasurer Eric W has personally hired an accountant to transfer all prior information to QuickBooks Online. No more digging for financial history! Thanks so much, Eric.

New Bank
Despite heroic efforts on the part of our treasurer and staff, the community bank we now use has proven to not serve our needs. An extensive search for a credit union that we are eligible to join and is accessible to the appropriate staff and directors has come up empty handed. Reviewing the multi state banks available, most socially responsible that can meet our set of needs is US Bank.

RESOLUTION
WHEREAS Coffee Party USA needs a full service business banking account, electronically accessible to several signers in several states, and with convenient locations in several states, and
WHEREAS US Bank provides all the services we require, and
WHEREAS US Bank is ranked better than most large banks on the social responsibility scale, it is
RESOLVED that Coffee Party USA shall open a business account with US Bank, and it is
FURTHER RESOLVED that the initial signers on the account shall include Executive Director (Debilyn Molineaux at this time) and two Directors (Jeanene Louden and Egberto Willies at this time).

The motion was made by Jeanene, seconded by Craig and passed: 6 yes, 0 no, 0 abstain, and 2 not present (Frank and Eric W).

THANK YOU CALLS
Debilyn has found and implemented a tool called Little Green Light to help us make these calls in an efficient manner. She gave us all a quick tutorial on accessing and using the tool, and the link we needed to get started. We set a deadline for ourselves of the first weekend in May, with a few exceptions for folks with serious conflicts.

ORGANIZER NATIONAL TEAM

Bi-Weekly ONT Call
We discussed the best day for the call given current schedules and conflicts and determined that Sunday, April 29th was the best date. Egberto will assist Eric W on the call.

Chapter Development
We had a lengthy discussion about the series of breakdowns that have held up the implementation of the new chapter development strategy. These problems range from technology challenges, to personnel issues, to miscommunications among various teams. The result has been an impressive willingness to withhold benefit of the doubt. This lack of charity among the players has caused emotional deadlock.

We, the board, declared a breakdown, drew a line in the sand, and stepped over it to the decision to implement the chapter development strategy as intended using the tools currently available to us. Our self imposed deadline is to be ready for National Coffee Week.

National Coffee Party Week
Billy presented this proposal from the Elections Task Force Committee. It is very similar to the Coffee Day action in 2010, with a slightly different theme. The proposed details follow:

  • June 4-10
  • “Civility” is the theme of the first meeting
  • Voter Guide template will be ready
  • Coffee Vote 10 week plan outlined
  • Materials prep by Billy, & volunteers Frank Maurizio, DeLann Williams


BOARD VACANCY
We had a second extensive discussion, this time about how best to go about filling the empty director position. We used the recommendation of the Board Development Work Group as a starting point, but as is our practice, if one director is a NO vote, the conversation is expanded.

We discussed lessons learned in the three and a half months we have been seated in terms of skills required to be a director, the time required, the talents and passions needed to fill this particular chair (it includes functioning as liaison to the Development Work Group), and addressed the issue of gender balance in our group. We decided we will look for candidates between meetings.

The process will be to nominate, vet, and then appoint the new director.

WORK GROUP AND PROJECT UPDATES

Internet Infrastructure
Chris introduced the concept paper, BRINGING IT BACK HOME, on how to reorder the technology “machine behind the scene”. Given some of the other issues we had to discuss, we agreed to study this document with the intent to review/ comment/ approve this concept paper by email between meetings.

THE REMAINDER OF THE AGENDA WAS SUSPENDED

SCHEDULE NEXT MEETING AND ADJOURN
The next meeting will be held on Wednesday, April 25, 2012, 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern. We all did 30 second check outs and then opened all the mics in order to say Aloha to one another.

Respectfully Submitted:
Jeanene Kay Louden

April 12, 2012

by JKL

The meeting scheduled for today was cancelled due to the lack of a quorum. Several of us are on travel (one in India!) and at least one person has a new work conflict. The date and time of our standing meeting is becoming a problem, so we are using the doodle.com scheduling tool to find an alternative that will work for us all.

Thanks for checking in on us! Please feel free to use the reply feature (below) to let us know how we are doing, and share any ideas you have for Coffee Party USA. Be sure to check out the follow feature (above): WordPress will notify you by email every time I post. Then you will always know….

Thanks for all you do,

Jeanene Kay Louden, Secretary of the Board of Directors

April 5, 2012

by JKL

CALL TO ORDER AND NOTE OF ATTENDANCE
Our Maestro conference call meeting was called to order by President Eric Byler at 5:02 pm PST.  Other directors present included: Secretary Jeanene Louden, Treasurer Eric Whinery, Craig Dunigan, Jose Gutierrez (25 minutes only) Frank Kirkwood, Christopher Ritter, and Egberto Willies (a little late). Staff on the call included Executive Director Debilyn Molineaux and Membership Director Billy Sears. We opened the call with 30 second check-ins.

MINUTES
The posting of the last set of minutes is behind schedule. I have asked several people to help out with filling in the blanks on the last meeting minutes because I was calling in from a car and I lost contact several times in Detroit Canyon. The notes were not enough for me to do a couple of topics justice. I will post those minutes as soon as those agenda items are filled out.

FINANCIAL REPORT
We learned that we are still behind our membership / fundraising targets for March. Billy asked if the Board would like daily update emails on how this effort was progressing, but we decided what we would prefer access to a Google Doc that was updated daily that we could check in on as we felt the need. Because such a document already exists, the information was immediately available. Excellent!

The accountant Eric W hired personally to help us catch up on bookkeeping is in tax season, but will soon be working on financial reporting in Quickbooks Online.  Many thanks, EW,  for this act of generosity.

THANK YOU CALLS
Several of us have volunteered to make thank you calls to members who made significant donations when they joined or renewed their memberships. Debilyn volunteered to help, bringing the calls per person down to between 30 and 40 at this point. Let’s hope we get to make a lot more calls soon!

BOARD MEMBER REPLACEMENT PROCESS
The resignation of Vice President Kerry Helmer leaves us with a vacancy to fill. We spent a good amount of time interpreting both the letter and the intent of the bylaws as to how this should be done. We will send our thoughts on how to proceed to the Board Development  Work Group to take the next appropriate steps.

Just for fun, I’m including the sections of the bylaws we are working with in this effort below.

Section 5.  Vacancies.  Any vacancy occurring in the Board of Directors and any directorship to be filled by reason of an increase in the number of directors may be filled,by the affirmative vote of a majority of the remaining members of the Board of Directors at any annual, regular or special meeting.  A director elected to fill a vacancy shall be elected for the unexpired term of his or her predecessor in office and until his or her successor is elected and qualified.

Section 6. Filling of Vacancies.  Any vacancy in any office shall be filled by a person appointed by the Board of Directors, which person shall otherwise be qualified for such office in accordance with these Bylaws and shall serve for the unexpired term of the office or until his or her successor shall have been duly elected and qualified.

Resolutions
Between meetings Frank introduced a resolution to add to the Coffee Party staff by funding a part-time position for 10 hours per week at a rate of $400 per month to assist with these tasks:

  • Human Relations type function to insure we have needed Non-disclosure and Tech volunteer forms completed, and IDs (currently Drivers License) stored in a safe manner.
  • Work with IT team to keep (online) access up to date as volunteers come and go.
  • Provide training with online tools.
  • Create training videos.

The employee will require knowledge of Coffee Party structure, workflow, and volunteers and an ability to work with multiple learning styles.

We discussed the sustainability of this position given our current funding position. We are finding ourselves in a double bind: we need to be able to empower volunteers if we are going to implement our strategic plan, and we need to raise money in order to be able to provide the volunteer empowering infrastructure. We decided to launch this program on a three month basis, give our strategy everything we have, look for all cost savings and efficiencies we can, and go for it. We will reevaluate our position July 1.

RESOLUTION
WHEREAS implementation of the strategic plan included support for volunteer and affiliate/chapter activities, and
WHEREAS a paid position would ensure continuity and security in sensitive matters, and
WHEREAS we have confirmed that the cash flow will support a three month trial of this position, it is
RESOLVED the Board of Directors hire the recommended temporary staff.

The motion was made by Frank, seconded by Jeanene, and passed: 7 yes, 0 no, 0 abstain, and 1 not available (Jose).

NEW PLAN FROM INTERNET AND SOCIAL MEDIA WORK GROUP
Chris presented a plan that distributed responsibility for outreach and content to seven teams. Each team would have utilize at least blogtalkradio, scoopit, Facebook, and newsletter/blog formats in a systematized way to cover topics and breaking news of interest to the Coffee Party Community. Content would be organized by a collaborating editorial board of participants and interested parties to prevent both duplication and omission.

It became clear to me that, while the plan expanded our reach, it also distributed the task to include the possibility of participation of an almost unlimited number of people. These seven teams could include many people, or could morph into many more teams. It would be a pleasure to reduce the risk of volunteer burnout and system failure that occur when plans are too dependent upon too few individuals.

RESOLUTION
WHEREAS The Coffee Party Mission Statement drives us to connect communities, and
WHEREAS one of our main methods for connecting communities is to use social networking tools as a lense through which vetted information is re-distributed, it is
RESOLVED that the new plan submitted by the Internet Infrastructure Work Group be adopted.

The motion was made by Egberto, seconded by Chris and passed: 6 yes, 0 no, 0 abstain, and 2 not available (Jose and Craig).

THE REMAINDER OF THE AGENDA WAS SUSPENDED

SCHEDULE NEXT MEETING AND ADJOURN
The next meeting will be held on April 12, 2012, 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern. We all did 30 second check outs and then opened all the mics in order to say Aloha to one another.

Respectfully Submitted:
Jeanene Kay Louden

March 29, 2012

by JKL

CALL TO ORDER AND NOTE OF ATTENDANCE
Our Maestro conference call meeting was called to order by President Eric Byler at 5:07 pm PST.  Other directors present included: Secretary Jeanene Louden (in and out of the call due to technical difficulties), Treasurer Eric Whinery, Craig Dunigan, Frank Kirkwood, Christopher Ritter, and Egberto Willies. Directors who missed the call: Vice President Kerry Helmer and Jose Gutierrez.  Staff on the call included Executive Director Debilyn Molineaux and Membership Director Billy Sears. We opened the call with 30 second check-ins.

MINUTES
The posting of the last set of minutes is behind schedule.

FINANCIAL REPORT
We learned that we are behind our membership renewal targets for March. Billy asked if the Board would like daily update emails on how this effort was progressing, but we decided what we would prefer access to a Google Doc that was updated daily that we could check in on as we felt the need. Because such a document already exists, the information was immediately available. Excellent!

In keeping with both our need-to-know and our need-to-support, were invited to an already scheduled a BDS (Blue State Digital) training offered by the Internet and Infrastructure Work Group, Tuesday 4/3, at 8pm Eastern.

Debilyn reported on her membership outreach project involving thank-you calls from Coffee Party leaders. Directors and Staff who were willing to participate in this project were asked to stay on the call after the meeting ended for brief strategy session. Thanks, everyone who volunteered for this important effort!

PROJECT MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE
ManyMoons, our current project management software, has been bought out by Salesforce and will be re-released as “do.com”. We discussed whether to stay with ManyMoons while we wait for a verdict from the new vendor to see how/if it will change, or if we should use this window of opportunity to change tools.  We decided to do more research on this and continue the conversation over the next several weeks. This will include filling out comments on a MANYMOONS PROs and CONs Google Doc. Right now the alternate project management tools include: Chatter and Big Marker. We may find more.

COMMUNICATION PROCESS WHEN CHANGES ARE MADE WITHIN WORK GROUPS
Craig Dunnigan, liaison to our Strategy and Organizational Design Work Group asked that we create a protocol for when changes are made within Work Groups so that other Work Groups are notified.  For example, the Internet Infrastructure Work Group decided to create a new committee for the development of the Group Site Factory (a system of WordPress websites being developed by Eric Yao) and other highly technical and in-house matters so that the Work Group itself, and its weekly meetings could focus on inventive ways to use popular social media platforms such as Scoop-it, Twitter, Hoot-Suite, Blog Talk Radio, and Facebook.   This was shared with the Board of Directors and received an endorsement the week prior, but it was not shared with the Strategy and Organizational Work Group.  This resulted in volunteers in the SOD Work Group feeling like they were not properly valued. As the discussion progressed, other instances of hurt feelings and upset reactions to things we have done were reported.

We, the members of the Board, want everyone to know that nothing we have done was intended to exclude others. If we have offended by appearing to not follow some process, we apologize. We feel ourselves to be guilty of over exuberance, rather than malice, but the appearance of transgression has proven to be hurtful to others regardless of our intent, and for that we are truly sorry.

Question: How do we organically disseminate information, without relying solely on the Board of Directors as liaisons to the various Work Groups, the workflow process, and, on the Board of Directors Meeting Minutes? These processes appear not fast enough and inclusive enough to prevent upsetting some volunteers.

Ideas:
1) More advance notice on what is to be voted on in meetings
2) More lead time when distributing material for Resolutions to be voted upon
3) Not voting on important matters if Directors are absent, especially if the liaison to a Work Group that is considered a “stakeholder” is absent, and
4) Waiting a week for final vote when new ideas are proposed.

It was pointed out that the Board of Directors inherited and endorsed a work flow chart that could be helpful in situations like this,but it needs to be updated to include this particular situation (when a Work Group making an internal decisions that might be of interest to another Work Group), and, remembering that the work flow process, even when followed, apparently does not move information fast enough to prevent upsetting some people.

ANTI CORRUPTION PLEDGE

We discussed this agenda item last week, read materials between meetings, and felt we could move ahead without risk of stepping on toes.

RESOLUTION
Anti-Corruption Pledge revision

  • WHEREAS Coffee Party USA is focused on political outcome no matter who receives the credit through both internal initiative and collaboration with like minded organizations, and,
  • WHEREAS Rootstrikers is aligned with our interests, it is
  • RESOLVED that the Coffee Party USA shall promote Rootstrikers’ “Anti-Corruption Pledge”, and
  • devote social media resources and volunteer time to this initiative”.


The motion was made by Frank, seconded by Craig and  PASSED: 6 yes, 0 no,  1 abstain (Egberto), and 2 not present (Jose, Kerry).

PROJECT UPDATES

Election Taskforce (Billy)
Interest in hosting a “National Coffee Party Week” as discussed touched upon on last week’s call and tabled for this week’s meeting. Billy made a detailed proposal available for review between meetings, so we were able to discuss the details of his plan. In general:

National Coffee Party Week- first week in May, proposed

  • Would be a lead in to Coffee Vote 2012.
  • Coffee Vote 2012 will be an update of the 2010 initiative which really didn’t get much traction based on the release date of the toolkit to local organizers in 2010.
  • Would be based upon the 2010 Coffee Vote toolkit.
  • Work already committed would be included


RESOLUTION
National Coffee Party Week

  • WHEREAS The Coffee Party USA is engaged in outreach to the many communities that make up these United States, and
  • WHEREAS Coffee Party Week 2010 was very successful in bringing together people from many walks of life to discuss our common problems, it is
  • RESOLVED that we will pursue the development of the Coffee Party 2012 plan with vigor, in conjunction with our Group Sites roll out and Local Chapter/Affiliates.


The motion was made by Jeanene, seconded by Egberto, and passed: 7 yes, 0 no, 0 abstain, and 2 not present (Jose and Kerry).

CORE VALUES
We discussed plans to share a list of Core Values with Official Members and others in the Coffee Party community for comment and collaboration.  The Board delayed this decision for one week given the recent upset that seems to come when we act too quickly.

UPDATE on PUBLIC RELATIONS COMMITTEE (PR)
Debilyn Molineaux let us know that the first meeting has yet to be scheduled but will be within the next 10 days.

The proposed purpose of the committee: “In alignment with the Mission, Vision and Core Values of Coffee Party USA, the PR Committee will engage in and respond to media outreach, promotion of Coffee Party to the general public, and make website design and user interface recommendations (pending Board approval) for advancement of Coffee Party USA in achieving its’ mission”.

During a previous meeting, we reached a consensus that the Public Relations Committee should focus on outreach to journalists, press releases, and coordinating messaging decisions with the Board of Directors. A motion to finish this on email was “approved” by unanimous consent.

UPDATES

Internet Infrastructure Committees  – Chris R
Craig agreed to assist with some of Drupal issues, email set up, etc. We may be able to call on other volunteers.

PSAs (Public Service Announcements) – Egberto
Mike Potters has asked for assistance in recruiting for the contest development team (part of Pathways work also).

Rapid Response Team – Egberto
Eric Byler explained that Billy Sears had forwarded requests from members for the Coffee Party to make a statement on the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.  Eric Byler sent an email asking for input, copying the four Board Officers (Byler, Helmer, Louden, Whinnery) as well as Egberto Willies and Jose Gutierrez, two Directors who are men of color.  Egberto replied that he was already working on an essay.  The result was:

http://www.coffeepartyusa.com/trayvon

Eric B, who is the liaison to the Messaging Work Group, offered this as an example as to why it would be awkward to have a team of volunteers outside the Board making quick response decisions such as this.  He said he could probably find eight new people to make important decisions on messaging and speaking on behalf of the Coffee Party, but the need for a rapid response in situations such as the demand for a statement on a controversial issue calls for a more direct relationship between the Board of Directors and the Coffee Party’s message.  Thus, the vote last week to include all members of the Board of Directors in the Messaging Work Group was an example of positive outcome from collaborative deliberation.  NOTE: Fast Response Protocol Document Is in Development.

April 17th Tax Day- Eric B
Eric B shared that Will Rice is doing an excellent job leading a coalition of organizations participating in an April 17 Tax Day action calling attention to Grover Norquist’s “No Tax Pledge” and questioning whether or not Members of Congress should make pledges to a person rather than to the country as a whole.

For more information:  http://www.coffeepartyusa.com/stand-up-tax-day

Coffee Party will send an email blast to people who live within 120 miles of Washington DC inviting them to come to the rally.

Left Forum Follow Up – Billy
Billy reported we have asked Chris of the BAB to forward any relevant items of consideration to Eric B.  He also presented a list of names to be added to our database.

501(c)3  and Advisory Board – Jeanene
These topics are being deferred to the Board Advisory Work Group.

SCHEDULE NEXT MEETING AND ADJOURN
The next meeting will be held Thursday, April 5, 2012, at 5pm Pacific, 8pm Eastern. We closed with 30 second check-outs and then all got a chance to say Aloha to one another.

Respectfully Submitted,
Jeanene Kay Louden

March 22, 2012

by JKL

CALL TO ORDER AND NOT OF ATTENDANCE

Our Maestro conference call meeting was called to order by President Eric Byler at 5:07 pm PST.  Other directors present included: Secretary Jeanene Louden, Treasurer Eric Whinery, Jose Gutierrez, Frank Kirkwood, Christopher Ritter (who had to leave the call after about an hour), and Egberto Willies. Those who missed the call included Vice President Kerry Helmer, Craig Dunigan, and Executive Director Debilyn Molineaux. Membership Director Billy Sears was the only staff present.

MEETING MINUTES

Meeting minutes to date are posted.

FINANCIAL REPORT

Treasurer Eric W informed us that our membership / fundraising goal for March is no longer on target. We discussed the current plans for renewal and new membership opportunities.

Eric W also reported on the condition of our open receivable with the legal firm that exceeded the charges allowed in our contract with them back in 2010-11, while dropping the ball on our 501(4)c application (a “decision” they made and we did not discover until we tried to file our tax return this year). After discussing the history with this vendor, we encouraged Eric to either, 1) inform the firm we consider this account paid in full, or, 2) offer no more than $2000 to satisfy the $11,000 A/P (per previous Treasurer input). In the end we all felt the attorney fees we are now paying to correct the tax status situation they created easily justifies not paying anything more on this account.

INTERNET INFRASTRUCTURE WORK GROUP

Chris and Eric B told us the work group met last night to hammer out a 2012 approach. They shared that the meeting was intense, and still the group was able to come up with an innovative solution that served all identified purposes and functions:the work group has split into two new committees to support our new mission and vision:

  • One committee which will work out problems with the existing Groupsites and maintain the Coffee Party footprint on the web (a maintenance and operations group)
  • One committee which will now be looking outward beyond our in-house projects to find creative ways to interact with the outside world (trends, tools, technology).


MESSAGING WORK GROUP

Eric B initiated a discussion on the need to expand the membership of the Messaging Work Group. The Public Relations slots were filled with highly qualified volunteers last week. We discussed the difference between messaging, development, “advocacy and action”, and public relations, only to come to the realization that we, the members of the Board, WERE the messaging work group: that while the many work groups would always assist us in important ways, we are the focal point for information to and from the membership, and we could not give that job away if we wanted: and that the newly formed Public Relations group could fulfil the tasks that were messaging in nature that we COULD give away.

RESOLUTION
Messaging Work Group

  • WHEREAS The Coffee Party Board of Directors is directly accountable to the membership, and
  • WHEREAS the Messaging Work Group is the voice of the Coffee Party USA, it is
  • RESOLVED that the Coffee Party Board of Directors is the Messaging Work Group.
  • It is further
  • RESOLVED that the Public Relations is a subcommittee to the Messaging Work Group.


Motion was made by Eric B, seconded by Egberto, and passed: 5 yes, 0 no, 1 abstain (Frank), and 2 not present (Craig and Kerry).

VISION STATEMENT to STRATEGIC PLAN!

Eric B opened the discussion of a vision statement chart he developed using the planning tool developed by Ash Maurya, Alexander Ostenwalder, and Lucas Rodriguez Cervera. We all liked the direction of the document, but came to agree that it was really more a strategic plan than a vision statement, and how it did a fine job of capturing the direction we had created in Chicago.

We discussed the need to launch this strategy outside ourselves; how it was already operational within the Board, but, because it had not been wordsmithed, we were not able to share it with our membership. We discussed the risk of going out too soon v. the risk of taking too long in search of “just the right language” and explored if an early release was wise given that two directors were not at the meeting.

We also discussed releasing a draft of our Core Values. We decided that we should not do that now, given that the Strategy and Organizational Design work group was just days (hours) from delivering a very good working draft to us, and it would be a shame to not honor their effort.

In the end, we decided that all our documents, especially those that were put out for input, were intended to be transparent and organic; that perfection was the great enemy of doing. And, that since all the directors had had a chance to comment on all three pieces we were considering releasing, the two absences were tolerable to most of us.

RESOLUTION

  • WHEREAS The Coffee Party Board of Directors is committed to transparency and participation in all of its work, and
  • WHEREAS all documents, especially those released for comment, are considered “organic” and subject to change per the will of the membership and our better understanding of our charge, and
  • WHEREAS we believe the time has come to expedite the launch of #CP2012, it is
  • RESOLVED that the Coffee Party Board of Directors release the draft Mission Statement, Vision Statement, and Strategic Plan for review and comment by both members and followers.


Motion was made by Chris, seconded by Jeanene, and passed: 6 yes, 0 no, 1 abstain (Frank), and 2 not present (Craig and Kerry).

NATIONAL COFFEE PARTY WEEK / COFFEE VOTE 2012

In the little time left, Billy gave us a quick history of the 2010 Coffee Party Week and why he thinks this would be a great kick off for the new affiliate program. We have several links to read before next week’s meeting.

FUNDRAISING IDEAS
There were several other fundraising ideas on the agenda that will have to wait for next week. There were good docs linked for our review before we meet again.

AMERICANS ELECT

Last week we started a significant discussion on the pros and cons of endorsing this organization. It happened again as soon as the name, “Americans Elect” was mentioned. Because there was such a disparity of facts available among us, we decided to invoke the Coffee Party way (outlined in our collaboration guidelines) and conduct a research effort to address all concerns.  We will have the facts we need to make a decision next week.

REMINDER

The Organizers National Team call is Sunday, 3/25. Eric W will be leading the call. Frank will be giving an update on the Anti-Corruption Pledge collaboration with United Republic. Everyone is invited to participate on the call. Local groups are a key element in our strategic plan!

SCHEDULE NEXT MEETING AND ADJOURN

The next meeting will be held Thursday, March 29, 2012, at 5pm Pacific, 8pm Eastern. We closed with 30 second check-outs and then all got a chance to say Aloha to one another.

Respectfully Submitted,
Jeanene Kay Louden

March 15, 2012

by JKL

CALL TO ORDER AND NOTE OF ATTENDANCE

Our Maestro conference call meeting was called to order by President Eric Byler at 5:05 pm PST.  Other directors present included Vice President Kerry Helmer, Secretary Jeanene Louden, Treasurer Eric Whinery, Craig Dunigan, Jose Gutierrez, Frank Kirkwood Christopher Ritter (who had to leave the call after about an hour), and Egberto Willies. Staff present included Executive Director Debilyn Molineaux and Membership Director Billy Sears.

MEETING MINUTES
Meeting minutes to date are posted.

FINANCIAL REPORT
Treasurer Eric W informed us that our membership / fundraising goal for March was on target.

Annabel Park has asked for an early payment against the money we owe her from the Enough is Enough rally last year. After clarifying that this was an early payment, and that we would return to our debt service schedule after this exception, we agreed to make the early payment.

RESOLUTION

  • WHEREAS Coffee Party USA has an invoice outstanding with Annabel Park, and
  • WHEREAS the budget includes payment of this invoice over several months, and
  • WHEREAS the Treasurer assures the Board the cash flow will not be negatively affected by an early payment, it is
  • RESOLVED that Annabel Park receive her April payment in March


The motion was made by Egberto, seconded by Craig, and passed 7 yes, 0 no, 2 abstain (Eric B and Jeanene) and 0 not available.

OUTBOUND COMMUNICATIONS SCHEDULE

PROPOSED SCHEDULE

Newsletter

  • 2nd and 4th Monday’s of the month.

Action Alert emails (Email blasts)

  • 1st and 3rd Monday’s of the month.

Suggested action alerts:

  • Online petitions
  • Legislative actions
  • Twitter petitions

Action requests from our online communities:

  • Coffee Party Feminists
  • Coffee Party Equality
  • Coffee Party Immigration

Kerry suggested we need a Facebook posting schedule also.

We felt that, rather than going out to members due for renewal and potential new members with simple membership requests, we and others are better served if we dove tail membership and donation opportunities into our news and alter activities. How, exactly, this should be done was sent back to the Development Work Group.

CHAPTER DEVELOPMENT (Eric W & Frank)

We made assignments for the Organizers National Team call scheduled for Sunday 3/25. Eric W will lead the call, Diane will run the board for us, and Eric B will promote the call via media.

Topics under consideration

  • Membership recruitment
  • Mission/Vision/Values/Strategy
  • Election Task Force
  • Group Sites

The Chapter Development Work Group sent forward a motion through their Board Liaison, Frank:

RESOLUTION
Chapter Development

  • WHEREAS the Coffee Party USA values all of its local organizations around the country as central to our mission and vision, and,
  • WHEREAS the Coffee Party USA wishes to empower all of its local organizations to develop and grow, and,
  • WHEREAS the Coffee Party USA recognizes that growth and stability are enhanced by predictable structure and defined planning, and,
  • WHEREAS the Coffee Party USA has developed, through the work of its Chapter Development Work Group, in coordination with legal counsel, a detailed and multi-level plan for starting, developing, and formalizing local Coffee Party affiliates, it is
  • RESOLVED that the Board of Directors recognizes and affirms the work done by the Chapter Development Work Group and summarized in the document “Coffee Party Group Organizing Blueprint” (and in the Coffee Party Provisional Affiliate Trademark Licensing Agreement linked from that document) is the guiding document for the development of “Coffee Community” groups and “Chapter Affiliates.” Further, it is
  • RESOLVED that the Chapter Development Work Group is charged with developing a permanent Coffee Party Chapter Affiliation Agreement to submit to the Board of Directors for approval within one year of the date the first affiliation agreement is approved.


The motion was made by Frank, seconded by Egberto, and passed: 7 yes, 0 no, 2 abstain (I could not tell who) and 0 not available.

Resolution Tabled:
“The President of the Board of Directors is authorized to act on behalf of the entire Board to approve affiliation agreements with local groups who have submitted the appropriate Coffee Party Affiliate Application and provided documentation that they meet the minimum requirements recommended by the Executive Director of Coffee Party USA in consultation with the Chapter Development WG Chair.”

We all wanted to express our appreciation for the hard work of the Chapter Development Work Group generally, and Diane Owens, specifically for the work on the national program just approved and for the work to prepare Austin, Texas, for affiliation. In recognition of this effort, we decided to not wait for Austin to submit the paper work we knew was ready to go, and act impulsively to give them the badge of honor of being the first official Coffee Party USA affiliate.

RESOLUTION

  • WHEREAS the Coffee Party USA Chapter in Austin, Texas, is ready to submit affiliate paperwork, and
  • WHEREAS, many Chapter members worked diligently on the Chapter Development Work Group, it is
  • RESOLVED that Austin be the first Coffee Party Provisional Affiliate under the newly adopted structure.


The motion was made by Eric B, seconded by Egberto, and passed: 9 yes, 0 no, 0 abstaining, and  0 unavailable.

STATUS UPDATES ON PROJECTS FROM THE BOARD RETREAT

We all have a great sense of urgency to finalize our work in Chicago and expand this exciting conversation to the rest of the Coffee Party community. Each of us accepted assignments to that end and reported on our progress. A summary of the reports follows in outline form.

Board Planning Meeting Outcomes – Jeanene/Debilyn
A rough draft has been started by Jeanene.

Vision Statement – Eric B, Chris, and Debilyn
“Coffee Party envisions a nation of diverse communities sharing a culture of informed public engagement that sustains a tradition where our sacred duty to vote is the currency of our democracy.”

I did a “road test” of the vision statement on my radio show today and it went well. Chris will take the lead. Eric B has been doing related writing this week.

Core Values (Jeanene, Craig, and Debilyn, and Eric B as reviewer only)
Work has begun on the core values with the Strategy, Organization, and Design Work Group: we incorporated values from the web site, the P&P work group, Annabel’s work, and added concepts from our Chicago work sessions. SOD will deliver a living draft. The Board will be the final editors.

UPDATES ON PROJECTS

Election Taskforce, (Frank, Egberto and Eric W)
This project combines “The List”, the Voting Rights project the Citizens Lobby initiative, and the Anti-Corruption Pledge collaboration.

National Coffee Day
A proposal to repeat this initiative from 2010 is in the works. The idea is to, once again, use the format of the “Agora” (used in Iceland to renegotiate the political system, find out what’s important, etc). We talked about using our “Citizens Intervention” name for the initiative.

Information Activists, PSA’s, Rapid Response Team (Eric B & Egberto)
PSAs: Mike P is on fire to start this, but he needs volunteers.

Egberto wants to send out Press Releases, and wants to know the process? As is typical in volunteer organizations, the guy who brings up the question gets to come back next week with the plan. @:> Nice job, Egberto!

Group Sites (Chris and Debilyn)
Testing will begin tomorrow and go through the weekend tomorrow. Group Sites are also working to add RSS feeds from Scoop-It. The team hopes the volunteer site will be ready this week also.

501c3 (Jeanene and Debilyn)
No activity yet (the current 501(c)4 filing is in a serious crunch)

Branding / Public Relations (Kerry)
The newly appointed Public Relations Committee is Mark Cotter, Chris Ritter, Frank Maurizio and Egberto Willies. Woo Hoo!

Advisory Board Contact/Clarification (Jeanene)
This has low priority on my list right now. It will be two or three weeks before I can get to this.

UPDATES ON INITIATIVES AND COLLABORATIONS

Move to Amend Collaboration (Egberto)
The executive committee of the National MTA Executive Committee will meet in Eugene, OR in late April. (I can’t wait to see you, EW!)

Citizens United Flash Rallies (Egberto)
The lead groups for this action, Common Cause and Free Speech for People, are stalled on this effort. As collaborators, it is not our role to act outside of their process, so it looks like this effort is on hold until they come out of deliberations. Our resources are still at their disposal.

April 17 Tax Day Coalition
(Eric B)
Our own Will Rice is the point person for the coalition. This Washington, DC action will be big. We are hosting a call later today, including MoveOn, AFL-CIO, and others, that may offer a release point for the details of the effort. We are all invited to be in DC on 4/17 to attend the event.

United Republic  — Anti-corruption pledge – Frank, point person

99% Spring – Debilyn and Billy, point people

Resolution Week – Eric Byler, point person

No Labels – No Budget, No Pay – several (Jeanene did radio show)

Unite Against the War on Women – Jeanene, point person
(We are women marches in all 50 states on April 28th and in Washington DC in September).

Americans United for Change – Craig, point person
(a campaign to expose corporations who donate secretly to PACs thru non-profits)

Americans Elect – Chris
Chris reported that Americans’ Elect won the Peoples’ Choice Award at the recent South by Southwest Conference he attended. We started to discuss this group and decided to table the discussion for later.

REMINDER – Left Forum event is this weekend in NYC

SCHEDULE NEXT MEETING AND ADJOURN

Our next meeting will be Thursday, March 22, 2012 at 5pm Pacific, 8pm Eastern. We all did a 30 second check out and said Aloha!

Respectfully Submitted,
Jeanene Kay Louden