Order of Business – First Meeting of the Elected Committee and others selected to conduct the business of the West Point Class of 1955 (EXCOM) for the period June 2010 – May 2015 (including the 60th Class Reunion) took place this day in Slocom Hall, Emma Willard School, Troy, NY. There being no previous meeting of this body, no minutes had been previously prepared for approval. The President called the meeting to order at 0900 EDT and made opening remarks. The agenda is at enclosure 1.
TREASURER'S REPORT: The Treasurer provided an overview of the structure and status of existing accounts including a preliminary breakout of the 55th Reunion. A final Report will be given by the Reunion Chairman when the account is closed out..The USMA Association of Graduates (AOG) maintains a consolidated Administrative Fund for the Class, containing sub-funds such as Memorial, Memory Pages, Caring and General Administrative. The Treasurer discussed the status of each as well as others not listed here . The Reunion Fund is maintained outside AOG. The President expressed the great concern of the previous President that no indebtedness remain from his five year administration. The EXCOM approved a motion to review the overall 55th Reunion charges and the amount requested in advance from each classmate planning to attend the Reunion and that changes (if any) be suggested for the 60th Reunion. The Scribe agreed to assist. This item will continue under NEW BUSINESS. The Treasurer pointed out that a Reunion Committee has a very difficult overall task and that sometimes individual members often work quite independently making it difficult for the overall Chair to have full and continual control.
SCRIBE'S REPORT: The Scribe provided an example of the type periodic report (enclosure 2) he intends to give the Class. It also contains conclusions of a review of his duties IAW the Constitution. Of particular interest are Constitutional duties of the Scribe and Secretary under Article III, Section 4.The Secretary's last listed duty is to "be responsible for maintaining the Class Locator and a list of Class children and grandchildren attending West Point." The Scribe is to assist him. Neither the Scribe nor the Secretary are aware of the location of the current list nor who, if anyone, is doing this duty. Additionally, the Scribe' s duties include "Forward notifications of serious illnesses or deaths to the Executive Committee." The ISO is actually maintaining the Class Locator and making all notifications of serious illnesses and deaths. This arrangement appears to work very well and, should continue.. However, a related item will be introduced under NEW BUSINESS (Establishing an LCA Officer). Currently, the ISO sends copies to Tom Sims, Dan Ludwig and AOG. Perhaps the Constitution should be revisited in reference to these duties.
HISTORIAN'S REPORT: The Historian had been excused from the meeting but had submitted a report (enclosure 3). Preparation of the Reunion Book is underway and coming together but, there is no tentative date when it will be mailed. On another topic, he restates his case for official thanks to be given to Kitty Millard, wife of classmate Bob Millard. Over the years, Kitty has provided invaluable service by locating lost classmates and widows. The EXCOM unanimously supported sending a framed picture of the view up the Hudson River from Trophy Point. Bob Strati will prepare and send it preceded by a letter from the President.
A SHORT BREAK WAS TAKEN.
CLASS GIVING: Upon resumption of the meeting, the President said he had asked Bob Strati, EXCOM Member-At-Large, to give us a description of the Class Giving Fund which, although administered by AOG, is different from AOG'S administrative funds raised on behalf of West Point. This item is scheduled on the agenda under OLD BUSINESS but, covered now to facilitate Bob's departure. Bob explained the difference between restricted and unrestricted funds and and mentioned an agreement reached several years ago between DA and the Superintendent defining which funds are to support which type activities. Our Class gifts over the time of their existence have been about 45% restricted. About 39% of our gifts to support Coach's' housing were given to and distributed by Kelly Lichtenberg's 501(c)(3) fund. Bob stated the Class had no further financial obligation and, he departed the meeting.
TRUDY'S (AND CHARLIE'S) WONDERFUL TOUR OF THE HISTORIC EMMA WILLARD CAMPUS FOLLOWED BY LUNCH IN KELIOS HALL
ISO Prior to yielding to the ISO, the President stated that the need for and importance of a Class ISO were emphasized at the recent Leaders' Conference at West Point. That said, the ISO noted 280 classmates are on one or more of our nets; the purpose of each was clarified and, it was noted that net visits have increased All present and future EXCOM meeting minutes are on the web page. The Quiet or Business nets have the most members. Nearly one-half the widows are on the Quiet net. Some classmates who have addresses, but do not participate in the nets, have given permission to use their address when necessary to contact them.
AWARDS AND RECOGNITION: Ted Gay discussed the status of the two existing Class nominations for the Distinguished Graduate Award. After debate, the decision was made for Ted to mail copies for the EXCOM'S review. The President will set up an teleconference call among all elected members at 1500 EDT, 7 October 2010. The objective is to arrive at a rank ordering of the two candidates. An additional topic was discussed of possibly establishing a Distinguished Classmate Award as had been done for Father Oscar Raynal, The EXCOM opposed any such future awards.
MEMORIAL ARTICLES: In Lee McKinney's absence, the President passed out material Lee had prepared on the general status of these articles (enclosure 4). After discussion, it was agreed the Scribe would provide the President with some past correspondence he had had with AOG. The President will ask Lee for his opinion on the procedure for preparation of articles.
WIDOWS SUPPORT PROGRAM: Discussion was tabled because of Dick Wargowsky's absence.
OLD BUSINESS: Bob Strati had earlier reported on CLASS GIVING and departed.
REVIEW CARING FUND SOP: Bob Hinrichs, coordinator of the Fund, was not present at the meeting. He has recommended some change to the SOP which will be sent by the ISO on the Leaders Net.
REVIEW OF DEATH-of-a- CLASSMATE SOP: A recent change in the organization of the Army Air Force Mutual Aid Association (AAFMAA) could have an impact on our SOP, specifically, the SOP's reference to whom a survivor could turn for the Association's assistance. NOTE: Jim Drummond, Vice President, joined the meeting at this point.
ESTABLISHING AN LCA OFFICER: Tom Sims had submitted a written recommendation that such an officer be established to assist the ISO in expeditiously locating an LCA. After discussion, it was decided to support Tom's proposal but to refer to such person as the LCA Coordinator. The Vice President volunteered to fill this position. It was suggested that the Widows Support Program might also be impacted.
MINI REUNION PROPOSAL. Dick Stemle has submitted a written recommendation for such a reunion and suggested it be held in Louisville, KY. in 2012. He did not offer to coordinate the affair. The President will contact him. The ISO stated he had compiled a detailed After-Action-Report following the highly successful Austin Mini and that it is available to anyone conducting a future mini.
CLASS SUPPORT OF FEAGIN FORUM: As background; in Fall 2009, Duke University honored classmate John Feagin and established an endowment in his name. Several classmates attended the associated ceremony and activities. Annually, fund raising and other activities will continue to occur. It was decided that financial support would/could not be rendered by the Class. Nevertheless, individual classmates can become involved. The President and Vice President will attend this year's activities.
JILL WIEGAND REQUEST: Jill Wiegand, Bob's widow, contacted West Point (AOG) with an offer to contribute $25,000 ($5,000 a year for five years) to support a cadet program which would allow two cadets a year to participate in an overseas language/cross cultural immersion for three weeks. She desired that the gift be identified as coming from the Class of 1955. Her request raised some issues which can and are being worked out. In the President's absence, the Vice President thanked Jill and told her the Class will work with AOG and do what is necessary. The President will obtain the mechanics of proceeding and, additionally, determine if AOG'S standard deduction of 15% will apply.
SIXTIETH REUNION PLAN: The President has reserved space at the Park Ridge, NJ Marriott; a move supported by the EXCOM, including that the Reunion will be held at West Point. See earlier discussion under the TREASURER'S REPORT.
RIVERSIDE MILITARY ACADEMY RECOGNITION OF CLASSMATE GREG BARRAS: (This is an added item not on the published agenda). Riverside Military Academy, Gainesville, GA will dedicate a memorial on October 16, 2010 to honor seven former cadets and an instructor who lost their lives in Vietnam and later wars, including Greg Barras. Greg's widow. Mary Lu (now Walker), will attend as will our own Vice President, Jim Drummond, himself having attended RMA. He motioned $50 be provided for flowers. The Treasurer amended that amount to $100 which was approved by the EXCOM.
NEXT MEETING: There was no discussion of a date for the next regular meeting but, the teleconference of 7 October 2010 will be held (see AWARDS/RECOGNITION).
The President asked if there be further business. There being none, the meeting adjourned.
Enclosure 1: 21 AUG 2010 EXCOM Agenda
Enclosure 2: Scribe's Report
Enclosure 3: Historian's Report
Enclosure 4: Memorial Articles Status