CALL TO ORDER: The regular meeting of the Board of Directors of the Parkinson’s Support Group of Sonoma County (PSGSC) was called to order at 10:01 a.m. by Chair Kathy Osbun.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES: The minutes of the meeting of October 19, 2011, were approved as read by Kathy Osbun.
TREASURER’S REPORT: Treasurer Sandy Grant presented a financial report for October. For income in October, PSGSC received $111 from the general meeting donation jar, $429 from Bud Suiter via the RV [Wood] Carvers organization, and $25 from the Human Race. Expenses were $100 for a guest speaker honorarium, $14.09 for recording tapes and $590.88 finalizing the work done by Spaulding, McCullough & Tansil LLP for obtaining State nonprofit status for PSGSC.
PROCEDURES MANUAL: In the process of gaining State nonprofit status, the PSGSC bylaws were rewritten by an attorney to comply with California law (PSGSC already had Federal nonprofit status.). However, the “old” bylaws were retained in part and converted to a Procedures Manual to outline such items as the roles and duties of officers and directors. No formal action was taken on the Procedures Manual, as it is to be viewed as a work in progress.
BOARD MEMBERS/QUORUM: There was a detailed discussion held regarding the number of board directors (15) and the number required for a quorum (8). “In the past,” said Kathy Osbun, “we conducted meetings no matter how many are here.” Now, without a quorum (majority), business can be discussed, but no action can be taken if it requires a vote.
Newly revised bylaws also provide for one-year board member terms starting in January 2012 at the annual meeting of the Board of Directors. That will be the time for directors to decide whether they can commit to attending monthly meetings or resign from the board. Bud Suiter, saying he would like to see “new blood” on the board, asked if he could still participate in discussions if he were to resign. “Absolutely,” Kathy responded. He would not have a vote, but would be welcomed as is any PSGSC member to attend meetings and offer input. Kathy said an E-mail would be sent to each listed board member asking for them to declare their interest in remaining on the board.
EMERITUS DESIGNATION: The Board voted unanimously to confirm the title of “Chairman Emeritus” –rather than Board Member Emeritus—to Davis Brown, Ron Trouse and Patricia Staudacher; all three are former Chairs of the Board. “We need to see it as a retired position.” Kathy noted. Previously considered was a decision to require the honorees to choose between keeping their title or keeping voting privileges, but not both. At the suggestion of Joe Hootman, it was decided to separate the title from voting membership and have the honorees declare in January elections whether they wished to be active voting board members willing and able to attend monthly meetings on a regular basis.
PROGRAMS: Kathy Osbun said that the annual Holiday Party will be held on the second Saturday in December, Dec. 10, and that the entertainment will be the River Choir. There is no general meeting in January. The speaker for February will be movement disorders specialist Dr. Suketu Khandhar from Kaiser in Sacramento, subject to confirmation.
There was some discussion on how to improve and manage breakout group sessions. A basic set of procedures should include welcome of new members, invitation to new people to share first, emphasis on confidentiality, emphasis that personal experience with medicine is just that and not medical advice or recommendation, and sensitivity to the difference between sharing and monopolizing conversation (Try to redirect when necessary and limit individual input to five minutes.).
BROCHURE: The Board voted to authorize up to $600 for 500 copies of a new color brochure designed by Doug Schwartz and a graphic artist friend. Attempts will be made to produce the brochure at a lower cost.
NEUROLOGIST LETTERS: Suzanne de Kozan reported that she is awaiting signed releases on copyrighted material for use by her and Davis Brown to produce protocol guidelines for hospitals admitting people with Parkinson’s. She said she expects the signatures to be forthcoming.
Kathy Osbun said she has ordered from the National Parkinson’s Foundation 60 “Aware and Care” kits that help people with Parkinson’s to have their medical needs met when hospitalized.
UCSF PROPOSAL UPDATE: Suzanne reported that she was still working on obtaining a response from a UCSF neurologist regarding a proposal to bring a movement disorders specialist to Sonoma County, at least on a part-time basis. Barbara Stiling said one of the problems is the lower Medicare reimbursement rate assigned to Sonoma County and that Marin County might be considered as an alternate location.
On that same subject, Kathy Osbun reported that Dr. Graham Glass, a movement disorders and sleep disorders specialist at UCSF and VASF, sounded interested in coming to a Sonoma County satellite clinic and the doctor has referred the proposal to UCSF administrative personnel.
MEETING DATE CHANGE: The Board of Directors will meet next on Wednesday, Dec. 14 (Instead of the third Wednesday), to avoid the holiday rush. The meeting will be from 10 a.m. to 12 noon at the Emeritus skilled nursing facility at 300 Fountain Grove Parkway in Santa Rosa.
ADJOURNMENT: The Board Meeting was adjourned at 12:01 p.m. by Chair Kathy Osbun. The above minutes are subject to approval at the next board meeting on Dec. 14, 2011.