Americans United for Separation of Church and State
Virginia Chapter Board Meeting Minutes (Draft)
Sunday, August 23, 2009
1340 Sanjo Farms Drive
PRESENT: Robert Clapp, Richard Gould, Rubyjean Gould, Ellie Lipkin, Robert Rubin, Leslie Tourigny, and Robert Weekley.
President Leslie Tourigny called the meeting to order at approximately 3:00 PM.
1. Agenda approval and update: The board approved the agenda.
2. June 14, 2009, Board Meeting Minutes: The board approved the minutes.
3. Treasurer’s Report: Treasurer Richard Gould reported that as of 1 August, our local chapter has a balance of $10,787.52. $5,000 of the balance is in a CD bearing 4% and with an October 8, 2010 redemption date.
4. National AU Contribution: In accordance with the Board’s vote, a $1,000 donation was sent to AU National.
5. Donation to Anti- Defamation League (ADL): In accordance with the Board’s vote, a $250 donation in honor of Emily Friedman was sent to the ADL.
1. Chesapeake City Council Prayers: Leslie reported that Christian sectarian prayers continue to be presented at Chesapeake City Council meetings despite letters from the Virginia ACLU and the Freedom from Religion Foundation taking umbrage with this practice. She shared newspaper articles reporting that in addition to the provocative opening prayer, the Council chair has added a closing prayer. Leslie has been in e-mail contact with national AU forwarding media articles, but to date she has not received a response or guidance from them about how to proceed. Bob Rubin agreed to draft a letter to the local papers expressing concern about the sectarian prayers on behalf of the local chapter. Rubyjean will share letters sent to Portsmouth and local municipalities and school boards over the last several years addressing these same sectarian prayer concerns.
2. Nominating Committee: Bob Clapp and Bob Rubin reported that they had not been successful in finding candidates for the board’s open officer positions. Board members with expired terms willing to continue are Bob Clapp, Sandra Brandt, and Ellie Lipkin. As a result of this situation, there was much discussion about how to proceed. Options discussed were an alliance with the Richmond chapter, disbanding the chapter entirely, seeking assistance from national, forming an alliance with Virginia Wesleyan College Center for the Study of Religious Freedom, and scheduling a meeting to poll the local membership for direction. After much discussion, Leslie agreed to contact Beth Corbin at national AU for recommendations and she will convey information acquired to the board. Discussion of scheduling a membership meeting will be held in abeyance pending guidance from national AU
The meeting adjourned at approximately 4:20 p.m.
Rubyjean Gould, Secretary
August 23, 2009