2016 Annual Meeting
Highpointers Club Board of Directors
Red Lodge, Montana
August 13th, 2016
The Highpointers Club Board of Directors met at the Beartooth Hideaway Inn & Cabins in Red Lodge, Montana during the Highpointers Annual Convention.
President Tim Webb called the meeting to order at 10:08 AM.
Board Members in attendance:
1. Marion Bauman
2. Bomber Brown
3. Mark Comstock
4. Mick Dunn
5. Charlie Feris
6. Nikki Hemphill
7. Ruth Anne Heselbarth
8. Don Holmes
9. John Keator
10. Kathy Mitchler
11. George Paynter
12. Alan Ritter
13. Gary Szelc
14. Tim Webb
Board Member not in attendance:
1. Jim Sutton
Ex-officio Directors in attendance:
1. John Mitchler
2. Ray Nelson
Other Members in attendance:
1. Kamell Abdnour
2. Stony Burk
3. James Glaze
4. Kent Groninger
5. David Jenkins
6. Eric Lichtenstein
7. Fred Lobdell
8. Bruce Marshall
9. Jan Nelson
10. Terri Rowe
11. Penn Watson
II. Old Business
1. Approval of minutes (Mick Dunn)-
There were no e-mail minutes to discuss so no action was taken. Previous relevant minutes had already been approved.
2. Treasurer’s Report (Don Holmes)-
Don distributed a report that documented a healthy financial situation. The budget was approved unanimously.
3. Honorary Members (John Mitchler)-
The annual approval of honorary members had already been approved via e-mail.
III. Committee Reports
1. Conventions (Nikki Hemphill)-
Nikki reported that the current (MT16) and future (MA17) conventions planning are moving along very well.
2. Newsletter (John Mitchler)-
John has been experimenting with adding Directory content to the Newsletters in hopes of eliminating the Directory altogether as a cost saving measure.
Stony Burk has volunteered to take over the Milestones column from John.
3. Records (John Mitchler)-
Terry Bird has volunteered to keep track of Highpointers Records, taking over from John.
John explained that there is a very lot of archival material stored at his home in Golden, Colorado. Stony Burk also collects historical items.
4. Liaison (Alan Ritter)-
Alan will get a more detailed liaison report to the Newsletter in the future. He is also calling for more signs/arrows, as well as to replace some of the worn ones, for the signpost at Taum Sauk, Missouri.
5. Bylaws (Don Holmes)-
A cosmetic change was made to the Bylaws. In line six of Article 8.3 (Paul Zumwalt Award), the word “their” was changed to “his/her” to be consistent with the other award write-ups.
6. Awards (Don Holmes)-
Announcement of Awards recipients is to take place during the evening Banquet.
7. Membership (Ray Nelson)-
Ray passed out a memo entitled ‘Highpointers Club Membership Report 2015 Year’ for the Board to examine which shows that, to date, membership numbers are up modestly through 2015 and into 2016.
There was discussion regarding the pros and cons of a larger/smaller Club Membership. It was pointed out that having more Members means a larger pool from which to draw for positions and tasks. It was also noted that with suitable convention sites not readily available for a larger Membership, there may be a need to limit convention attendance. This discussion was largely participated by Nikki Hemphill, Don Holmes, Eric Lichtenstein, Ray Nelson, Alan Ritter and Gary Szelc.
8. Mercantile (Bomber Brown)-
Bomber reports that the Merc is running well and making money.
9. Website (Kathy Mitchler)-
Kathy reported that the transition of the website from Roger Rowlett to Kathy will be a slow, managed process and that Justin Sutton will manage social media.
Alan Ritter began discussion on the differences between the Club’s Facebook page and Dorothy Kucar’s ’50 States Highpointing Group’ Facebook page, noting that the Club page is a forum for High Point announcements while Dorothy’s page is more of a forum for active discussion among members of that group. It was noted that Dorothy’s page is used by many non-Club Members, which includes Dorothy herself.
10. Marketing (Kathy Mitchler)-
Bomber showed off the new, plastic Highpointers Information Cards and passed them out to the attendees.
11. More than 50 States (Kathy Mitchler and Mark Comstock)-
It was reported that there were six applicants for the $500 Jack Parsell Scholarship Award, the recipient of which would be announced by Bomber during the evening Banquet. The Scholarship fund from which this and future Awards will come is about $3,000 at this time.
12. Finance (Marion Bauman)-
The finance committee is trying to disband and with nothing but good things to say, Marion thanked all members of the committee.
13. Projects (Marion Bauman)-
Marion noted that there are six to 10 High Points having limited accessibility, many of these privately owned. North Dakota’s White Butte was pointed out as an example, where the land owner is currently in a Bismarck hospital and the property is being watched by a sometimes confrontational yet unknown individual.
14. Easements (Tim Webb)-
There was no report.
15. Elections (George Paynter)-
There was no report.
16. Massachusetts 2017 (Mick Dunn)-
Mick reported that planning for MA17 was moving along nicely with a crew made up of Mark Adam (Treasurer), Don Berens and Ruth Anne Heselbarth.
Mick also made a motion to name the annual summit watermelon feast in honor of the late Wendy Comstock. This was seconded and passed unanimously. The event will now be known as the Annual Wendy Comstock Watermelon Feast, effective at MA17.
IV. New Business
1. Stony Burk requests to address the Board-
Stony proposes that he resigns from the Highpointers Foundation at year end so as to focus more on Club interests. He expressed the need for the two Boards (Club and Foundation) to communicate and work more closely together, and eliminate the duality of efforts between the two entities. He suggested that an Advisory Committee be created to address this need.
Some of the projects has taken on include signage work at Brasstown Bald in Georgia. He also presented newly printed Highpointers Club flyers that can be used to recruit new Members.
2. Items from the Floor-
Mark Comstock expressed the desire to have the 2019 convention held in Michigan and proposes that summit certificates would be available.
George Paynter will dedicate time to working with ownership/mining interests of Black Mountain, Kentucky, as this has been a delicately accessed High Point over the years.
Gary Szelc and Nikki Hemphill propose use of a different color ID lanyard for Board Members to be more visible to the Membership.
Gary Szelc proposes more regional hikes to be implemented by the Club as a means of attracting younger members to our Membership.
Bruce Marshall brought up the idea of having central locations for our conventions in the four geographic rotational regions of the country. Nikki Hemphill went on to explain some of the impracticality of this and Alan Ritter went on to express the joy of uniqueness of the 50 individual states.
Bruce then went on to express ideas of diversity and inclusiveness after which an impassionate discussion ensued between Nikki Hemphill, Don Holmes, Eric Lichtenstein, John Mitchler and Alan Ritter.
3. Highpointers Club Brand/Future of the Club-
The Board voted unanimously to go into Executive Session, to discuss this subject, at 11:27 AM.
V. Executive Session
1. Executive Session began at 11:32 AM.
2. Executive Session ended at 12:33 PM.
The Board of Directors Meeting was adjourned at 12:36 PM.
VII. Group Photograph
It should be noted that the annual photograph of the Board of Directors had been taken sometime between the Pancake Breakfast and the Board of Directors meeting.