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Board Minutes - Oct 2010

Marymount Alumnae Board Minutes

Minutes of the Marymount Alumnae Association Fall Kickoff Board Meeting
Thursday, 7 October 2010
888 Seventh Avenue, New York, N.Y.

Attendees In Person:
Patricia A. Cole (President), Joyce Abamont, Jane Bartnett Galvin, Angelica Hinojosa, Elisa Lyew, Jennifer Doody Bauchner, Caitlin Tramel and Nicole Moore Office of Alumni Relations, Sister Brigid Driscoll (Honorary Member), Sister Mary Heyser (Chaplain)

By Phone:
Sarah Phillips Sullivan (Vice President), Molly Albrecht, Rita Arno, Maria Conte Benedict, Mary Donohue, Renee Zobel, Kathy Jowitt (Secretary).

Opening Prayer (Sister Mary Heyser, R.S.H.M., Chaplain):
Sister Mary opened by reminding everyone that October 7, honoring was the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary.

Introduction (Patricia A. Cole, President) Excerpts from remarks:
Patricia welcomed all. "I am truly pleased to be here and before I proceed with my remarks I would like to acknowledge some of our attendees…Caitlin Tramel, outstanding Champion of the Board and Nicole Moore, who brings a wealth of expertise to the Board—thank you. Two honoraries Sr. Mary and Sr. Brigid, thank you for taking the time to join us and all fellow Board Members…Let me continue by saying that I am very proud to serve as your President and of you my fellow Board members and our exceptional honoraries. Particular recognition of also to our newcomers….You are the present and future leaders of our treasured Association and Community…Thank you for stepping forward to this time of great opportunity…

So given our new members I think it's appropriate to take some time to level set: I came across a quote recently from JFK 'our task is not to fix the blame for the past but fix the course for the future.' And this perfectly applies for our focus to date… I joined the Board in '05 and assumed the responsibility of Presidency in January of this year…One of my first priorities as everybody knows was to put together our 3-5 year strategic plan which allowed us to articulate and redefine our mission, and the reason being was to create a forum for understanding of why we exist and the values that influence our decisions.

Secondly, the strategic plan also serves as a blueprint for action and for reference as we go about our work as well as milestones to monitor our progress and achievements in tangible and measurable ways. It also provides a marketing tool for those interested in the association.

But most importantly it laid the groundwork for meaningful change by focusing on what's really important to our long-term success and that of the entire community (by which I mean Faculty RSHM, Marymount alumnae and Fordham alumni). So with that orientation in place we put our nose to the grindstone and with a lot of hard work we were able to accomplish our collective first of a very significant milestone: Our first reunion at Rose Hill. But not only our first Reunion at Rose Hill but one with real engagement and involvement of all the community, representation from all partners, celebrating the past through our wonderful Honorees but also welcoming, enjoying and appreciating the present together and imagining and looking forward to a new future.

Firstly, Since we have an ambitious agenda tonight I will not be taking the time to do an in-depth review of the plan but I will ask you to reacquaint yourself and become fluent with our strategy and let me quickly remind you of our key priorities: (1) Rebuilding, reconnecting and strengthening our intra-community relations (2) continue to roll out a pro-active, multifaceted and very diverse communication plan (3) Growing the endowment for the Marymount Legacy Scholarship through our strategic donor stewardship (4) And lastly, implementing Board standards which build operational excellence and effectiveness...

Also, we are talking about an action packed 2010 and 2011, including our signature Founders, a fourth MLF scholarship, a second Spring Fordham Rose Hill reunion, and a groundbreaking Womens Leadership Institute—all enormously exciting prospects…so let me reiterate.. So thank you and in sum this work will continue to require exceptional teamwork, the ability for us all to work from the same page, to be resourceful, the ability to continue to accept debate and controversy with resilience and confidence. We are a diverse and very talented group and if we continue to work with vision, and, commitment and at the same time avail ourselves of the formidable opportunities now afforded to us, I have faith as your President that we can continue to build and create a powerful legacy for our cherished Mount.

I leave you with the words of Goethe, 'Knowing is not enough, willing is not enough, we must do.' …Thank you!!"

Minutes (Kathy Jowitt, Secretary):
Kathy asked for formal approval of the Minutes taken at the April 19, 2010 Board Meeting, the last Board Meeting of the 2009-2010 Alumnae Board Year. The request for approval was seconded by Sarah Sullivan, Vice President of the Board, and several other Board members.

Alumnae Association Report (Caitlin Tramel and Nicole Moore, Office of Alumni Relations):
Caitlin introduced Nicole Moore who has been with the Alumni Relations Office for a number of years, and has worked on many Fordham programs, including with the Black Alumnae Group, Cultural Events, the Fordham Travel Program and various spiritual initiatives, including the Memorial Mass held yearly on St. Patrick's Day.

Committee Reports:

Nominations Committee (Rita Arno, Chair, and Angelica Hinojosa):
Rita mentioned two top priority initiatives for her committee, as noted below:

  • The committee will start researching candidates in December 2010 for the alumnae awards to be given at Reunion 2011.
  • Her committee will start looking for new members for the Alumnae Board in February 2011. The committee will send out a letter to the alumnae requesting that they consider running for the Board.

Maria Conte-Benedict who was participating as volunteer over the phone was asked to disconnect as it was recommended that the Board vote Maria in as a full-time Board Member. She was voted in by unanimous approval of the Board. Maria then rejoined the meeting and was informed of her new standing.

Patricia then reiterated her remarks regarding Kristine Welker and Margaret Watson former Co-chair and colleagues on the founding Legacy Fund Committee (remarks made at reunion June 2010). In view of their service she recommended they be invited to participate on the Board as Honorary Board Members. They will serve as advisers to the Board regarding the MLF Agreement status annually and as needed. This also received unanimous Board Approval.

Bylaws Committee (Kathleen McGahran, Chair, and Mary Donohue):
Mary Donohue reported for Kathleen McGahran, and highlighted the following proposed changes to the BYLAWS:

  1. All Board Members will be required to attend 3 out of 4 Board Meetings, preferably in person, but by phone, if necessary.
  2. Since it may not be opportune to hold the Annual Meeting at the Reunion, the BYLAWS will be edited to provide for a year-end state of the union to be issued by the President which will serve to recap the past year's events.

The by laws will be edited and further reviewed at the November 2 meeting.

Legacy Fund (Patricia A. Cole, President and Chair):
Patricia opened by informing the Board that Marge Gerrity, Class of 1969, has graciously offered to sponsor 2010 Legacy Fund Scholarship Recipient. A big round of applause was then given to Marge, in absentia, by the Board. Patricia informed the Board that Legacy Fund has not been yielding what is needed to award the annual scholarship. She emphasized that we need to aggressively build donorship around the Fund. There is also legislation under review in Albany which will support all NFP's ability to draw directly from the Fund surplus if needed to support scholarship fundings. More to come.

Patricia continues to work closely with Justine Franklin, investor relations, and Sr. Brigid is also assisting regarding donor stewardship planning and outreach.

  • Several initiatives are underway: there will be an outreach by mail to former donors by mail to consider matches (corporate/last donation, etc.)
  • Additional out reaching to more senior alumnae who may consider estate and planned giving opportunities.
  • Additional telemarketing in Spring 2011.

Patricia then outlined the three potential 2010 Scholarship Recipients for the Board and after review and discussion by the Board, it was decided that the following candidate— a psychology major with a 2.97 GPA and $37,200 in financial need—best fit the criteria for receiving the Legacy Fund Scholarship for 2010 given her track record in leadership (She had also been involved in Campus Ministry and had done volunteer work), and her family academic history with both Marymount and Fordham (mother and great aunt, Marymount, Class 1979, Aunt, Marymount, two uncles and great aunt were Fordham graduates).

Social Media and the Web (Jane Bartnett Galvin, Chair and Elisa Lyew):
Jane reported that she and Elisa are making a lot of progress and that lots of information is being posted (President corner now on the web as well as update to MLF section.)

Next steps include Class Agents, updated minutes and Commemorative Item Offerings on the web. There has been some discussion on the Marymount LinkedIn site (not formally Mount). Otherwise a special thanks goes to Elisa Lyew for all her time and effort on the Facebook Page launch and twitter updates. Jane informed the Board that she is exploring creating a link from the Marymount website to the LinkedIn area of the Fordham website. This will give the Marymount alumnae an opportunity to take advantage of career events at Fordham, job links, etc.

Historical Designation (Renee Zobel, Chair):
Renee informed everyone that she had had a conversation earlier on October 7 with both New York State Historical Designation and TKS, our consultant, regarding the status of the official historical designation for Butler Hall, Gerard Hall, the Science Building and Marian Hall and Spellman Auditorium. She mentioned that New York State needs an application to file for historical designation of Butler Hall, Gerard Hall, The Science Building, Marian Hall and Spellman Auditorium by 12/7/10, the date of their next quarterly meeting. Peter Shaver is out on an indefinite leave of absence, and Nancy Todd is covering for him. Legally, Nancy cannot access Peter's e-mail and she cannot locate the file of information on the Marymount Buildings in his office.This application is necessary to add Marian Hall and The Science Building to the historical designation. The architect for these buildings was Edgars and Higgins, and the buildings meet the 50 year and older criteria for historical designation, and they are connected to Butler Hall. Nancy Todd wants to make another visit to the Marymount campus. In the meantime, TKS has finished a draft application to the State. TKS needs to get all paperwork in to the State for State Historical Designation by the state's March 2011 meeting. Three months after that, by June, 2011, the National Office of Preservations should provide designation for National Historical Status. The official name, for National status will be "Marymount College District".

Renee reported that, while EF can do as they wish regarding refurbishing and redecorating the interiors of the buildings, the facades of the buildings cannot be touched. EF has assured Marymount that the murals in the rotunda of Butler Hall will not be touched. Finally, the Historic Preservation Office needs approval from EF before adding Marian Hall and Spellman Auditorium to the group of buildings designated for both state and national preservation.

Communications/Class Agent Outreach (Sarah Phillips Sullivan, Vice President and Chair):
Sarah reported that the crux and thrust of the current communications effort will be to rebuild, reconnect and strengthen the community. One member of each Committee will work with Communications. The tactics to accomplish these goals include the following:

  • Eblasts and letters.
  • Leveraging and cultivating Class Agents as key influences.
  • Helping to identify distinguished alumnae.

Sister Brigid added that communications will the Agents must be a two-way street and that the Agents need good communication from the Board. Patricia added that the Agents should also be involved in both Founder's Day, the Reunion, and the Women's Leadership Institute. A letter should go out to the Agents as soon as possible, and the Board needs to be absolutely what we want the Agents to do. A suggestion was also made that each class have more than one Agent. Perhaps Agents could be based on geographical location.

Founder's Day Celebration (Molly Albrecht, Chair, Maria Conte-Benedict, Elisa Lyew):
Molly Albrecht has volunteered to serve as Chair of Founder's Day Committee. She will serve as treasurer for the event, as well. We plan to keep the cost in line with last year's event, at about $30.00 per person. We have a mock-up of the invitation and plan to replicate last year's invite. The reservation cut-off date will be Monday, 11/29/10. Proceeds from Founder's Day will benefit the Legacy Fund recipient. As last year, Board members will have the opportunity to invite a member of the RSHM as their guest. Perhaps the Founder's Day Celebration will be linked with a mass. Melissa McCoy-Garzione has offered to help with the catering. The goal is to have the invitations out as soon as possible.

Reunion 2011 (Joyce Abamont, Chair, Jennifer Doody Bauchner, Marian Polovy and Roxanne Russell):
Joyce informed the Board that the strategy for Reunion 2011 will involve a multi-pronged effort, including the following:

  • An outreach effort will be made to the Class Agents
  • Kick off and start publicizing Reunion 2011 at Founder's Day, and provide incentive to register early.
  • Send a list of important alumnae to Joyce Abamont and Jennifer Bauchner.

A suggestion was made to include the deceased of Marymount in the Rose Hill Memorial Mass as well as that of the Convent as part of Reunion 2011.

Women's Leadership Initiative (Patricia A. Cole, President and Sarah Phillips Sullivan, Vice President):
Patricia Cole is working with Caitlin Tramel, Nicole Moore and Sarah Sullivan to put a framework in place. Initial proposal includes:

  • Thru educational programs, leadership and development opportunities-work to develop future generation of women leaders
  • Advance professionalism
  • Provide a forum for contemporary issues affecting women
  • Attain greater recognition of women's achievement

Further information will be provided at the November 2 Board Meeting. A request was made that all Board members send an e-mail to Patricia Cole forwarding the names of any exceptional women, RSHM, etc. that you know. A list will be compiled, and the committee will then decide what the priorities are.

The meeting was adjourned at 7:45 p.m. Next Board Meeting: Tuesday, November 2, 2010 – Fordham, 888 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 6 – 8 p.m.

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