"Promoting Humanist Values and Critical Thinking on the South Coast"


Humanist Society of Santa Barbara

Minutes of the Board Meeting August 13th, 2019

Home of Mary Wilk      Host:  Judy



Board members present:  Mary Wilk, Diane Krohn, Wayne Beckman, Judy Flattery and Neal Faught.


Board members absent: David Echols, Nan Cisney and Clover Brodhead Gowing.


Visitors:  None.


  1. Welcome/Call to Order: Judy Flattery
    • Judy called the meeting to order at 5:31 p.m.
    • Meeting ground rules: No multiple conversations at same time, be prepared for the meeting, have updates on Action Items.
    • Meeting Resource Role: Wayne will act in this role to keep meetings on track.
    • Open Action Items: Cover these during the meetings for updates.


  1. Secretary’s Report: Diane Krohn
    • The June 2019 meeting minutes have not been received from Roger yet.
    • The July meeting minutes were approved.
    • Bylaws: Action Item: Diane will correct the typo, then send to Board Members for review.  Board should be prepared to sign Bylaws in September meeting.  
    • Speaker’s Packet: We are waiting for Speaker’s Packet from Roger so it can be added to the Ops Manual. Judy passed out an Information Sheet for Speakers and Hosts.
      • Do Speakers get an Honorary Membership? Judy and Diane will review the Ops Manual to see if it has it.
      • Neal suggested having an Honorary Membership.
      • Wayne has a Speaker’s Packet and we will take that and consolidate with Judy’s draft.


  1. Treasurer’s Report: Neal Faught
    • 2019-2020 proposed budget:  Neal took the one submitted by Roger and checked it against our Balance Sheet for differences.  There was discussion about the budget.  Neal will continue to review the budget and we will plan on approval at the September meeting.
    • Neal reviewed Cash Flow and Balance Sheets. Some items are not applicable to us and Neal will see if he can delete these items. For example, Liability Accounts and Trading Accounts. The Science Camp Fund is listed as “0” because it is a dedicated fund, not available for anything else.  Wayne said that as long as our 501(c)(3) has lapsed, we should probably not have this fund because donors will not get a tax write-off. 
    • Action Item: Neal to review Science Camp Fund, how much is in it, and where does it show up.
    • 501(c)(3) update: Action Item for October Board meeting:  Judy would like to get a timeline together to reconstruct what happened and Neal will review what rules need to be followed for the reinstatement of our 501(c)(3) status. All Board members are asked to gather information as appropriate.


  1. Programs: Board
    • July meeting:  Low turnout, but might have been due to the 50th Anniversary of moon landing events that day. 
    • August meeting: Judy reviewed if we are ready for the August meeting.  Neal mentioned that we do not have a standard form for payment of meetings and meals.  Neal would like Nan to send him a list of meal attendees.  Action Item: Neal will contact Nan before the next Board meeting and discuss this.  Also, Robert Bernstein will be out for surgery for 6 months.  Judy has asked Marian to take photos.  We still need someone to write up the meeting. 
    • September meeting: Judy has been in contact with several possible speakers and will follow up on those. Roger will MC the meeting in September.
    • October meeting: Joey Chatelain, Las Cumbres Observatory is confirmed.
    • November meeting: Barbara Greenleaf, author and humorist, confirmed. We will pay her a $100 honorarium.
    • December: Solstice party and possible Voices of Reason a cappella choir.  The venue is Mulligan’s.
    • Google Sheets spreadsheets with past speakers, topics, potential speakers has been generated by Judy. If you want to be added to the spreadsheet to “view,” “comment,” or “edit” let Judy know.


  1. Publicity: Judy reporting for David Echols
    • August is handled as per David’s communication.
    • Facebook update: Judy created a post on the Humanist Facebook page and Facebook messaged that they could boost it, so Judy boosted it to a larger geographic area.
    • Align SC member + nonmember list with Nancy Wahl’s Constant Contact list: Judy has an appointment with Nancy Wahl to discuss email lists.  Judy also talked to Robert Bernstein about the use of  Google Groups and will investigate it (see Item 8.3).


  1. Activities: Judy reporting for Clover Brodhead Gowing, Ann Rojas and Nan Cisney
    • July Science Salon: Had about 40 attendees, some anti-vaxxers. Several Humanists were there and we got a couple of new people on our email list. 
    • September Science Salon: Whitney will be on maternity leave, so the September Salon is TBD.
    • Sign ups for Day of Caring (David Flattery – United Way Contact)
    • Winter Solstice planning: See Item 4.6, above.
    • Robert Bernstein has suggested publicizing meetings using Meet-Up. A Meet-Up is used for Sierra Club hikes and activities and seems to work well.   


  1. Membership: Mary Wilk
    • Current membership: currently 119 members. 
    • Mary felt that the move from Vista Del Monte to Valle Verde caused a decrease in membership --lack of socialization activities/areas. The San Luis Obispo group is very active and has a significantly higher number of members.  (Note: There is no cost to their membership; however, we have over 150 members on our free Facebook group, so these may not be equal comparisons). There was some discussion about attracting new members and any potential new venues that may be more amenable to after-meeting socializing. 


  1. Newsletter: Judy Flattery
    • 216 copies were distributed in August via email and regular mail; highest number since November 2014.
    • Judy received one request to be removed from email (too much email, can’t keep up).
    • Robert recommended we use Google Groups functionality for email distribution to consolidate publicity emailing and newsletter emailing. It would eliminate maintenance of multiple lists.


  1. Webmaster: Wayne Beckman
    • Roger suggested that we have a new picture on the website. Judy will check with Roger on what photo he wants.


  1. President: Judy Flattery
    • Hosts for future meetings: Action Item: Judy will ask Roger for the list and if we don’t get it, Judy will generate a new one.
    • Leader for the September 17th Board meeting: 
    • Judy met individually with several board members (Wayne, Diane, Mary, Nan, Roger and Neal so far)
    • Key issues:
  • Grow membership
  • More volunteers for leadership (Paul Weisman?)
  • Resolve 501(c)(3) issue
  • Second Tier Issues
    • Make information more accessible within Board and its committees in real time
    • Revitalize connection with other like-minded organizations for mutual support
    • Update our info on affiliated websites
    • Update and re-print our published pieces (membership flyer, tent cards, external nametags). Nan will work with Roger on these.


  1. Old Business:
    • Action Items: Neal reviewed the Actuals and Proposed Budget.


  1. New Business:
    • None


  1. Adjournment
    • The meeting was adjourned at 7:07  m.
    • The next meeting will be on Tuesday, September 17th, 2019 at 5:30 p.m. at Mary’s house.
    • The host will be Mary.


Respectfully submitted,

Diane Krohn

September 14, 2019