ALLIED PARTNERS - September 12, 2007

Present: Mary Jean Bartholomew, Mike Bodden, Susan Corrado, Michelle Horton, Alice Howard, Linda Ketcham, Leslie McAllister, Shirley Robbins, Susan Sawyer, Alex Thornburg, Jack Tiffany.

Introductions and Opening Thought: Leslie

Plan of Action: Explanation of the afternoon's discussion agenda, by Leslie. 1) Membership; 2) Decision making; 3) Financial management; 4) Mission/vision/goals/tasks.

After discussion of such issues as self-selection, proximity to the neighborhood, contributing as opposed to "interested", an application process, by-laws, a plan was agreed on by consensus:

Two levels of membership: Sustaining and Contributor, open to any faith community and any organization.
---Sustaining: An annual money contribution (no minimum), regular representation at eight or more meetings during the year, a commitment of volunteer time in the community.
Each group will have one vote, though more people may attend.
Each representative will provide liaison with his/her church or organization, transmitting information both from Allied Partners and from the church/organization.
---Contributor: A contribution of money or intermittent volunteer time. No vote. May become a Sustaining Member under the above rules.

Discussion of the role of providers at our meetings, with the following (not necessarily complete) list: JFF, Early Childhood Initiative, Wellness Center, START, ACORN, MAP, Learning Center, Boys and Girls Club, local government.
Idea: a "Monthly Spotlight" - a representative from one of the above would attend our meeting each month (in turn) to tell us about their programs.
Idea: Representatives of Allied Partners would attend stockholders' meetings and bring back information.
Idea: Susan C. can keep us well-informed regularly.
Conclusion: Any representatives may come to any meetings, but may not be on the agenda unless providing the Monthly Spotlight or bringing an emergency. No vote, of course. (Handouts OK?)

After discussion of such issues as consensus, what would constitute a majority (of those present, or of the complete sustaining membership), what is a quorum, voting by e-mail, the following plan was agreed on:

A quorum will be half of the sustaining membership, currently 12, therefore 6 will be a quorum. Decisions will be made first by consensus if possible.
If not, then by a majority vote, which would be half of those present as long as at least six Sustaining Members are present.

An Executive Committee was formed to deal with decisions which must be made between meetings. Examples: an emergency need for funds, a request that Allied Partners sign on to an issue or action. The Executive Committee may allocate funds up to $50. The committee for the rest of this year:
Moderator: Linda Ketcham (facilitate meetings, develop the agenda, serve as contact person)
Co-Moderator: Alex Thornburg (support Moderator, substitute when necessary, become next Moderator)
Treasurer: Jack Tiffany
Secretary: Shirley Robbins
Sue Sawyer volunteered to be the 2008 Co-Moderator.

Currently we have four projects, each with its own system of management. Donations go to most projects through MUM, which is the fiscal agent for Eviction Prevention and the Wellness Center. Good Shepherd Lutheran is the fiscal agent for the Food Pantry and Special Projects. Because of IRS rules, MUM needs all records from EP and the WC, including bank statements and copies of checks.

Funding decisions are made within each project, but oversight occurs at Allied Partners meetings.
Jack suggested that the Finance Committee make a recommendation on the percentage allocation of undesignated funds, based on the budget. Each project can make a request based on anticipated needs.

Discussion of a strategic fund-raising plan. Idea: Invite all pastors (or Mission Committee chairs) to breakfast in Allied Drive (Boys and Girls Club?), giving them a tour and explaining our projects. Leslie pointed out the increasing needs of neighborhood programs as County funds disappear. It was generally agreed that we may need a Fund-Raising Committee.
We need to remember that some of our own programs have not reached their funding goals.

At our next meeting we will do Allied Partners business as quickly as possible, then consider the rest of the Retreat discussion of mission - vision - goals. Leslie's questions:
1. Have we met our commitments to our four projects?
2. Do we need a committee structure (finance, housing, membership, volunteers)?
3. What does Allied Partners membership do for the member congregations and organizations? Provide information? Provide opportunities to interact with real poverty situations?
4. How do we know what we are doing is what we should be doing?
5. What is Allied Partners' role in advocacy and public education?

Please send your thoughts on these questions to Linda - - 256-0906


Shirley Robbins, Recording Secretary