MINUTES FOR ISS MEETING OF 7/31/05 AT THE SECOND ANNUAL SHAW SYMPOSIUM
AT THE SHAW FESTIVAL IN NIAGARA-ON-THE-LAKE, ONTARIO.
Respectfully submitted by Norma Jenckes
I. The meeting was called to order by the President Richard Dietrich. In his introduction he summarized the progress the ISS has made since its inception 18 months earlier. Using a mixed metaphor, he declared that “the baby is doing well but Rome wasn't built in a day.”
II. REPORTS FROM OFFICERS followed:
A. The membership Secretary Lori Dietrich reported that membership numbers have grown to a new total of 130 members.
B. The Treasurer Lagretta Lenker presented a budget summary which showed the total income of ISS as of 7/31/05 as $ 22,915.37. Total expenditures, $5042.51, and total assets at $ 17,872.86.
(Note: More details of this budget and lists of “angels, contributors, sponsors, and partners” are available to members on the website.)
A question rose from the members present, after this report was read : “Why are we collecting and trying to raise money?"
President explained that we have an Endowment Fund goal of $100,000. However, he also noted that since we are non-profit, the IRS has rules about how much money we can raise and that he needs to look further into what limits there may be.
The suggestion was made that we should raise dues to cover all operating expenses.
However, no actual motions were made or seconded on either of these concerns.
C. Recording Secretary Norma Jenckes reported to group on the status of the elected and appointed positions in ISS. According to the bylaws, new members of the Advisory Committee will be re-appointed by the President when their terms of office end and their appointments will be submitted to the Executive Committee for their approval. However, members of the Executive Committee must be elected by the membership at large for three year terms. At this time the term of the office of Vice President is coming to an end. Don Wilmeth, who currently serves in that capacity, has been invited to stand for re-election. Whether he assents or not, nomination must be sought for the office and an election conducted in the next months.
D. Vice President’s Report on Conference in 2006. In Don Wilmeth's absence, the President described a recent visit he had made to Brown University where Don Wilmeth has been working diligently to plan the 2006 Conference. The theme of the conference has been decided, "Sesquicentennial Shaw," and a preliminary call for papers has been distributed and is available on the ISS website. The members were asked to send proposals for papers and/or panels to the President. Also, there was some discussion on whether the papers might be made available online. There was a consensus that, at the very least, abstracts of all papers should be available online.
A question was raised about whether the Brown Library would mount a special exhibit of the extensive collection of Shaw material. The President reassured members that the John Hay Library will display significant pieces from the Sidney Albert Collection. He also announced that Anthony Gibbs had agreed to be the keynote speaker and that a new biography of Shaw which he has authored will be published before the conference.
III. President’s report was next on .the agenda . He reviewed the ISS Plan and stressed particularly the international aspect of the ISS. One of the advantages of our international stature is that the ISS is mobile whereas all other Shaw societies are local and serve the limited needs of a specific area. We can hold meetings in various locales and we seek affiliation and cooperation with Shavians throughout the world. He underscored the inclusiveness of our organization. He mentioned specific overtures from Dublin Shavians who seek affiliation.. He also discussed plans for the celebration in England of Shaw’s 150th Birthday.
He also relayed the invitation from a Shaw organization in Chicago which will be encouraging a year long observation of Shaw’s birthday throughout 2006-07.
One member also notified the members that the Round Toppers in Texas were dedicating a program to Shaw in November, 2005.
The President also announced that the Shaw Symposium at Niagara-on-the-Lake will be held a week or two later in the Summer of 2006 to avoid conflict with other celebrations of Shaw.
The conference for 2008 has also been planned for Washington, DC with a preliminary theme of “Shaw and the Art of Government. “
IV. The President turned to the large question of “Is the ISS Plan working?" Constraints of time made this discussion sketchy. He stressed the need to propose Shaw papers at non-Shaw conferences. And he raised the serious question of how to better foreground the theatrical and stage aspect of Shaw activities? He also asked that members think more seriously about releasing their own initiative in voluntary activity. He mentioned the website of Kay Li as particularly exemplary.
B. Questions of the use of the Hampton-Hussey gift were also raised. A detailed online discussion was promised for August and September. The meeting was adjourned on schedule.