BRS 2010 Annual Meeting Minutes





BRS Board and Society Meeting Minutes – 2010

BERTRAND RUSSELL SOCIETY

2010 ANNUAL BOARD OF DIRECTORS MEETING MINUTES

McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario
Saturday, May 22, 2010

I. CALL TO ORDER: The 2010 annual meeting of the BRS board of directors
was called to order at 12:30 pm May 22, 2010 at McMaster University,
Hamilton, Ontario, by Chad Trainer, chair, BRS board of directors.

BRS DIRECTORS PRESENT: Board members in attendance were Chad Trainer,
Alan Schwerin, Ray Perkins, Jr., David Henehan, Kenneth Blackwell,
Howard Blair, David Blitz, Rosalind Carey, Jolen Galaugher, Nicholas
Griffin, Kevin Klement, Gregory Landini, Bernard Linsky, Tim Madigan,
John Ongley, Chris Pincock, Peter Stone, and Russell Wahl.

BRS MEMBERS PRESENT: Other BRS members in attendance were Alan Bock,
Giovanni de Carvalho, Philip Ebersole, Karen Perkins, Stephen Reinhardt,
and Tom Riggins.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES: The motion to approve the BRS 2009 board meeting
minutes, as amended and published in the May-November 2009 BRS
Quarterly, was made by Ken Blackwell, seconded and unanimously passed.

II. ANNOUNCEMENTS: none

III. REPORTS. Ken Blackwell reported that the BRS treasury balance as of
March 31, 2010 was $10, 753 USD. Contributions made up $1190 of BRS
income for that quarter, which is $200 more than contributions for all
of last year.

IV. OLD BUSINESS: none

V. NEW BUSINESS:

1. The following BRS members were nominated and elected as officers of the BRS for the coming year:

Chad Trainer, chair, BRS board of directors
Alan Schwerin, president
Ray Perkins, Jr., vice-president
Kenneth Blackwell, treasurer
Peter Stone, vice-chair of the board
John Ongley, secretary of the board and society.

2. BRS president Alan Schwerin raised the question of where the 2011 BRS
annual meeting would be held. After some discussion, Peter Stone
suggested Rochester. Alan Schwerin asked Tim Madigan if he (Tim) would
be willing to host the annual meeting next year at St. John Fisher
College in Rochester, NY (where Tim teaches and where the BRS annual
meeting was held June 27-29, 2008). Tim agreed to host the 2011 annual
meeting there if the SJF administration and David White (also faculty at
SJF; he will be co-convener) approved. A motion was made, seconded, and
passed to hold the 2011 BRS annual meeting at St John Fisher College
(date to be specified later), pending agreement by the SJF
administration and David White.

After a discussion, a consensus was formed that the first or second
weekends in June would be the best times to have the annual meeting
there.

3. Ken Blackwell urged that membership dues be raised, for the first
time since 1993, because BRS expenses (approximately USD $42/member)
outstrip our income from dues, and that in addition, the BRS further
subsidizes student and limited income memberships. He noted that the BRS
has been depending on voluntary contributions to maintain the balance
roughly where it was several years ago.

Ken then made the following two motions, as amended on the floor:

a. Moved that, beginning with the 2011 membership year,
the regular member fee be raised to $45;
the regular couple fee be raised to $50;
the student and limited income fee be raised to $25;
and that we set a trial membership fee at $30, renewable for a second year.

b. Moved: that the postage surcharge of $4 for those domiciled outside the U.S. be removed.

Each was seconded and passed without opposition.

4. Chad Trainer announced that after 6 1/2 years editing the BRS
Quarterly, Rosalind Carey and John Ongley had stepped down as editors.
Chad then asked if anyone was willing to take on the role of BRS
Quarterly editor or knew of anyone who would. No one volunteered and no
one knew of anyone else who would be interested in the position.

After a discussion, a motion was made to form a BRS Editor Search
Committee, including Gregory Landini and Howard Blair and with David
Blitz as chair, to seek a new editor for the Quarterly. The motion was
seconded and passed unanimously.

5. John Ongley presented a report, with data and graph, showing that
while BRS membership had declined steadily (except in 2000) from 1990 to
2003, it stopped falling and began to rise again when he and Rosalind
Carey began sending “time-to-renew” mailings to all recent and many more
distant past members in 2004 and after, with a follow-up mailing two
months later. He concluded from the data that sending a “time-to-renew”
letter with follow-up was a necessary (though not sufficient) condition
for increasing membership.

Ongley proposed to establish a “corresponding secretary,” in addition to
a recording secretary, to do “time-to-renew” and follow-up mailings in
January and March, a mailing for the annual meeting, and any needed
mailings for the fall board election. The purpose of this would be to
institutionalize the “time-to-renew” and follow-up mailings as regular
functions of the Society.

Ken Blackwell suggested that rather than two secretaries, which he
thought would be confusing, a membership officer be established. Peter
Stone suggested that a vice-president for elections be established.
Since this required a vote at a membership meeting (on the assumption
that the renewal vice-president is a permanent position in the BRS and
not an ad hoc one), to change the BRS bylaws, John was urged to return
with a specific amendment to the BRS bylaws to present at a members
meeting.

6. Rosalind Carey said that she had been organizing BRS sessions of
talks at the American Philosophical Association division meetings for
the past five years, but must stop doing it. She suggested finding three
different people to do this – one each of the three division meetings
of the APA. Jolen Galaugher will organize the next BRS session at the
central APA.

7. Dennis Darland had earlier proposed to the board (before the meeting)
that it either 1. remove the password protection on the pdf files of
scanned old Russell Society Newsletters (RSNs) and BRS Quarterlies,
though not Quarterlies from November 2003 on, that Dennis has online and
that are currently password-protected at his own website, or 2. move
the files to the members area of the BRS Library website (which is
password-protected). Ken Blackwell noted that there is copyrighted
material in some of the old RSNs, as well as personal statements made
about members in the minutes that could result in lawsuits. John Ongley
added that as far as he knew the copyrighted material was to be found
only in RSNs from 1990 and before.

At the Sunday, May 23, 2010 continuation of the board meeting, a motion
was made by Ken Blackwell that the files be made available at the
members area of the BRS Library website. This could be done by providing
links to the files at the Library’s site, though possibly storing the
files on Dennis’s site. The motion was seconded and passed unanimously.

VI. ADJOURNMENT. The meeting was adjourned at 1:30 pm. It was reconvened
the next day, Sunday, May 23, 2010, at 12:30, in order to finish board
business.

BRS BOARD OF DIRECTORS MEETING MINUTES (cont)
Sunday, May 23, 2010

I. CALL TO ORDER. Sunday, May 23, 2010, at 12:30-1:30 pm at McMaster
University, the board reconvened. Chad Trainer, chairing the meeting,
called it to order.

BRS BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT: Chad Trainer, Alan Schwerin, Ray Perkins,
Jr., John Ongley, Kenneth Blackwell, Howard Blair, David Blitz, Rosalind
Carey, Jolen Galaugher, David Henehan, Kevin Klement, Tim Madigan,
Chris Pincock, Peter Stone,

BRS MEMBERS PRESENT: Stefan Andersson, Alan Bock, William Bruneau,
Philip Ebersole, Stephen Reinhardt, Thomas Riggins, Barrie Zwicker

II. NEW BUSINESS (continued from previous day’s meeting).

1. Ken Blackwell made a motion to re-elect Dennis Darland as
vice-president for electronic projects. It was seconded and passed
unanimously.

2. Peter Stone proposed that former U.S. Representative Neil
Abercrombie, who is now running for governor of Hawaii, be made an
honorary member of the BRS. The motion was seconded and passed
unanimously.

BRS bylaw 5.7 states that honorary members must meet at least one of the
following criteria: 1. be a member of BR’s family; 2. have worked
closely with BR in an important way; 3. have made a distinctive
contribution to BR scholarship; 4. have acted in support of a cause or
idea that BR championed; 5. have promoted awareness of BR or of BR’s
work; 6. have exhibited qualities of character (such as moral courage)
reminiscent of BR.

Abercrombie, a long-time member of the Society who voted against
authorizing the invasion of Iraq, was said to embody several of these
qualities.

3. Ken Blackwell proposed that Dennis Darland’s files of scanned RSNs be
made available at the members area of the BRS Library website, as
discussed in item 7, section 4 (new business) of the Saturday board
meeting minutes above.

4. David Blitz proposed that Prof. Mario Bunge likewise be made an
honorary member. The motion was seconded and approved unanimously.

III. REPORTS

1. Ken Blackwell reported that he had contacted the two grandsons of
Russell, Earl Russell and the Hon. John Russell, asking if they will
accept the offer of honorary membership in the Society that was voted on
and approved at the 2009 BRS board of directors meeting. So far,
Blackwell said, they have not responded.

IV. ADJOURNMENT. The meeting was adjourned at 12:50.

John Ongley, secretary
Bertrand Russell Society
May 28, 2010


Report of BRS Executive Committee Action, February 2010

On February 9, 2010, Kenneth Blackwell, as Russell editor for McMaster University, presented the annual invoice for BRS subscriptions to Russell
to the BRS Executive Committee. The invoice covered the 2 issues of
volume 29 (2009). The names of all 2009 members in good standing were
included and multiplied by $30. The other 4 members of the executive
committee besides Ken, who was BRS treasurer at that time, approved the
invoice.

To be submitted for approval by the BRS board of directors, along with
the minutes of the 2010 annual board meeting minutes, at the 2011 annual
meeting, and added as an addendum to the minutes of the 2009 annual
board meeting.

John Ongley, secretary
Bertrand Russell Society
Thursday, July 29, 2010


Report of BRS Executive Committee Action 7-29-10

At the May 22, 2010 BRS annual board meeting, held at McMaster
University, the board decided to hold the 2011 BRS annual meeting at St
John Fisher College in Rochester NY. However, board member Tim Madigan,
of St John Fisher, informed the BRS executive committee in July 2010
that there were difficulties with holding the annual meeting at St John
Fisher in 2011. BRS board member John Lenz, of Drew University, then
offered to host the 2011 BRS annual meeting at Drew University in
Madison NJ instead, and Tim Madigan offered to host the annual meeting
at SJF in 2012.

In consultation with the board of directors, the executive committee of
the BRS (pres Alan Schwerin, vice pres Ray Perkins Jr, board chair Chad
Trainer, tres Kenneth Blackwell, sec John Ongley) therefore decided,
also in July 2010, to hold the BRS 2011 annual meeting at Drew
University, with John Lenz as host, rather than meeting at St John
Fisher College as previously decided at McMaster.

To be submitted for approval by the BRS board of directors, along with
the minutes of the 2010 annual board meeting, at the 2011 annual
meeting, and added as an addendum to the minutes of the 2010 annual
board meeting.

John Ongley, secretary
Bertrand Russell Society
Thursday, July 29, 2010

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