15. April 11, 2012

Association Working Group Conference Call
Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Remember to follow all results at musicassociation.wordpress.com. The minutes are posted pretty quickly after each call – please post any corrections that you might have. Also. Please let Stan know by email that you were on the call if you’re not on the list below.

ROLL CALL: Beth Babcock, Stanford Thompson, Louise King Lanzilotti, Katie Wyatt, Louise Ghandi, Mary Wurtz, Steven Liu, Bob Fiedler, Delia Raab-Snyder, Marie Montilla, Mark Churchill, Kassie Lord

Please let Beth know you were here, if not listed.

There will be no call on April 25th.

Information on Chicago – Bob Fiedler is developing an information packet for us, and will send it out soon. Most people are staying at the Congress Plaza. He’s looking forward to hosting us.  About fifteen people have signed up so far.

In Chicago we will have three groups working on Bylaws, the ramp up of the new Association and the ratification process. A more detailed agenda will be sent out before the meeting.


Mission/Vision Group  – has done a lot of work so far. (Margaret, Dalouge, Mark Churchill, etc.) Margaret and Dalouge are going to report on the overall work in writing and on the phone call next week.

National/Regional Representation – a new group is being formed to look at the issue. Beth called for volunteers – Louise Ghandi is willing to help, as is Delia She asked about the work done previously on this issue in San Antonio. Stan said that that information will be given to the group for information.

El Sistema groups – Beth sent out a list of self-identified El Sistema inspired programs, including how many sites in each program. It may not be complete and has not been vetted as to our developing definition of core programs.

In general we know their budget size, number served, challenges they face and accomplishments. We don’t know their corporate structure. Beth asked whether we might want to collect more information on these groups before the meeting. Louise Ghandi asked how important the corporate structure is to our organization. Beth said that she’s heard concerns from some people about multiple programs that might be connected under one umbrella, but might want each single site to vote separately. This raises the issue of representation – are we the House or the Senate? Louise Lanzilotti suggested that if there are dues, the groups might sort themselves out.


ED as a non-voting member of the Board – The survey said yes.

Preferred size of the Board – The weighted average came back with a preferred size of seventeen. There were comments suggesting that we begin a little smaller and leave some slots open to add people with specific skill sets. This seems like a logical idea.

Louise Ghandi said that from the responses from the survey show over 50% favoring 13 or 15. The group might want to weigh in on a final decision. Louise Lanzilotti and Mary agreed that a number of about seventeen with a starting group of thirteen is a good idea – this will be passed on to the working group.

Board Nomination Process – the entire group will decide the first Board. In an ongoing way, we need to decide how this is to be done. The philosophical question is whether we want to always leave this open to the entire group or whether we want the Board to take on that responsibility through a Nominating Committee; or whether we want the process open to nomination of the Board, with a set number of signatures of members allowing that nomination to go forward.

This group basically said that a nominations committee of the full membership or a nominations committee of the full Board would be best. Louise Lanzilotti suggested that it be finalized at the working meeting. Some groups do a combination of A and B – a committee with a Board member as chair and general members recruited to help out – that solicits names from the entire membership.

Mary wants to be sure that people from the membership be allowed to nominate people. Stan likes the idea of each member being able to nominate TO the nominating committee, which then discusses each nomination. There are many ways to do this.

Beth said that groups with an activist nominations process keep the process from becoming too tied to the Board and not the full membership.

Length of Board Terms – The largest endorsement was for 2-year terms of office, with 3 years coming in second. Several people commented that we need to be sure to stagger terms.

Number of Terms – The Other category got the most votes, and the comments generally said that people should have two terms and then sit out for at least one before being re-nominated.

Other Discussion- Beth is happy that we have done this much work in preparation for the meeting at the end of April. She asked what else we should to prepare for Chicago.

Bob said that a small group has been very involved in this process, a small group has been intermittently involved and a third group even less involved. He wonders how to bring everyone up to speed quickly. Louise Ghandi said that she’s a little worried about the size of the response for coming to the meeting, and suggest that we reach out more.

Katie Wyatt said that she wanted to know who has been filling out the surveys, since that might help us to encourage those who haven’t been participating.

Stan said that it is possible to find out who has been completing them, but it will take time. He asked for volunteers to make calls. Yes – Louise Ghandi, Louise Lanzilotti, Mary, Katie. Stanford will get us a list of who has participated and how actively, and a list of those we’ve heard from little or not at all.

Many people are not sure about the purpose of the organization, despite all of the ongoing work on this process.

Louise Lanzilotti used the analogy of the writers of the Constitution, who were a small group that formed on behalf of the larger emerging country. It is very important for us to get input from as many people as possible, but a smaller group will most likely finalize the association. We need to keep the Bylaws open enough that we can change them as everyone else gets up to speed.

Mary and Louise Ghandi have both had conversations with others who are skeptical but watching. They agreed that once the association is formed, some of those people will have more input.

Bob said that it seems that a good chunk of Saturday morning in Chicago should be a report. Beth said that Friday night might be better. Bob said that some are not coming until Saturday.

Louise Lanzilotti suggested that those who are attending do some homework before they come (through reading, possibly) and that we do use Friday evening as the setup session, since we only have two days to work.  Others agreed.

Beth suggested having someone serve as a “border collie”, to orient people as they arrive.

Louise Lanzilotti offered again to do a first draft of the Bylaws. Her only concern has been that people might adopt it unthinkingly. It should simply be a point of departure. Others said that this would be useful as a start. Louise will do it.

Beth said that some friends of this work are attempting to gain some seed funding for the association. There are no solid commitments yet, but the work is ongoing. She asked for recommendations of funding sources by any of us. Please let Stan and Beth know who they are.

Beth thanked everyone. Next week we will be talking about mission and vision. There probably won’t be a survey. After next week, we meet in Chicago!


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