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Minutes, Nov. 18, 2009

Alumni Board Minutes
Meeting on Nov. 18, 2009
3 p.m., MST

Members present: Brett Wendt (president), Russ Erbes (by proxy to Brett Wendt), Paul Shoemaker, Charles Major, Linda Linden, Geza Keller, Kathleen Hedges, Geza Keller, Avi Datta (proxy for Shasta Marrero). Louise Chamberlin, Edie Steinhoff. Non-member: Katie O’Toole.

Geza Keller makes announcements. About 22 – 25 people attended the Annual General Meeting at 49ers. Geza gave Brett’s presentation about the mission of Alumni Association. Bylaws and Strategic Plan of Alumni Assn. were rejected by Dr. Lopez as unacceptable last May, and our queries have not been answered for feedback as to what we could do to make bylaws acceptable.

Thus, the Alumni Assn. does not have any currently workable documents under which it can operate.

Paul Shoemaker: After the audience (at Annual General Meeting) overcame their general shock and disbelief, they sympathized with our situation. I researched the Alumni Assn. at New Mexico Military Inst. NMMI provides office space and utilities. Director and clerical staff are employees of the Alumni Assn. At Baylor University, the Alumni Assn. is a separate unit, but it does so much good for the school, the school wants them to rejoin.

Geza Keller: I researched Caltech. In fact, their rep was our consultant on our bylaws and helped structure our documents. Lifetime dues sustain the alumni assn. The more affluent the assn. is, the more weight they carry. At Caltech, the assn. bought a house, and the director is paid by Caltech.

Question: Can a New Mexico Tech Alumni Assn. sustain itself as an organization separate from NMT?

Paul Shoemaker: The Strategic Planning Committee is acutely aware of the challenges the assn. faces without the enthusiastic support of the Administration.

For Linda Linden, who is a new member, Kathy and Louise summarize the situation. Ricardo Maestas, the VP who supported the formation of an active alumni assn. has left. Cheryl Macey, the director for advancement, has left. Carol Lynn Tiegs, who was the advancement employee directly working with the alumni assn. has left.

The job of director for advancement has been posted. It is not yet clear who will get it and what the support will be for an alumni assn. once this is settled.

Question: What does the Alumni Assn. want to accomplish? What are its goals?

Paul Shoemaker: Knit together the alumni community. Trumpet Tech’s qualities for the purpose of recruiting students. Assist in placement of graduates. Assist the school in a number of ways.

Reduce the size of the Board to nine. Set up a Steering Committee, which will also contain the heads of the various alumni chapters, so those people are kept in the informational loop. A member of the Board of Directors, appointed the president of the alumni assn. will be chair of the Steering Committee. The Steering Committee can reverse actions of the Board, but the Director of the Steering Committee cannot cast a tie-breaking vote.

Geza moves changes be accepted. Louise seconds.

Brett will make requested revisions to bylaws and send them to Kathy. Kathy will email them to board members and collect votes.

ALUMNI TRIPS

Louise summarizes current situation. The Chile trip under Bill Chavez is going ahead. Thom Guengerich has been appointed to go along as NMT’s representative. The trip is planned for March 2010. Louise and Richard Chamberlin have offered to lead a trip to Italy in 2011, but have been told to put plans for that “on hold.”

Paul Shoemaker: What role does NMT play in these trips? Can the Alumni Assn. proceed to set up trips on its own?

Response: If Tech sends along an official rep, then the trip does not have to come out of that person’s vacation time.

Next meeting is set for Weds., Dec. 9, at 3 p.m., MST.

Geza moves to adjourn, Louise seconds, all vote AYE.