Announcement from the 2011-2013 MeRID Board
We want to invite the MeRID membership and the Deaf community to congratulate the following people who are joining the 2013-2015 Board term.
Maura Nolin: President
Cid Pollard: Vice President
Alyssa Gagnon: Member Secretary
Mary McKay: Legal Representative
Polly Lawson: Medical Representative
Kristin White: Educational Representative
Susan Boudreau: Northern Representative
Joining the continuing Board members (serving until 2014)
Sarah Littlefield: Treasurer
Vicki Munroe-Ludder: Southern Representative
Lisa Trainor: Member-at-Large
Nick Dionne: Student Representative
(This Board has recommended a candidate in addition to the two write ins and an announcement will be posted shortly to follow up on this position): Recording Secretary
We invite the MeRID membership (and those thinking about joining) to come to our Board mixer at the Deaf Culture Festival where the old board will officially trade places with the new board. This is a time to ask questions or just to become familiar with your new Board! 1:45pm-3pm.
Additionally, DNO and INO has agreed to combine as hosts for the DINO event at the Falmouth Foreside Tavern at 4:30pm and on. Please attend as an MeRID member and you may win a gas card!
Congratulations to the new Board of 2013-2015
We are contacting all of MeRID voting members (members who are in good standing with RID as well) to collect nominations of persons (who also hold dual memberships) you are interested in running in our August elections for the following positions:
Recording Secretary (takes minutes and assists membership secretary and helps update Website and FB by communicating with the Website Moderator)
Membership Secretary (checks and collects dues, updates database, and does emails)
Once the nominations have been collected on or by July 30th we will proceed to send out names of candidates who are running for specific positions and you then will have until august 30th to vote for your choices. By September fifth you will be informed of your new board members. MeRID board would like to ask that if all dual members have casted their nomination we would like to begin the election sooner. Please check to indicate your approval or disapproval of this option.
Our current board members staying on for one more year:
Student Rep, Nick Dionne
Member at Large, Lisa Trainor
Southern Rep, Vicki Munroe-Ludders
Departing Board Members:
President, Regan Thibodeau
Vice President, Grace Cooney
Co-secretaries, Evah Hallowell and Amy Dodge
Medical Rep, Jill Andrews
Educational Rep, Elyzabeth Smith
Current 2013-2014 Dual Member Candidates:
Cynthia C. Young
Daniel C. DeLuca
Douglas L. Newton
Erin E. Thompson-Foote
Jill Andrews (Sawyer)
Joanne M. Weiss
Lois G. Morin
Mary Jane Grant
Tammy L.R. Meserve
I dont give permission that in the case all nominations are sent in full by all dual members as listed above before the July 30th deadline, the MeRID board can proceed to post/send election information before the August 1st deadline.
Then insert here:
Your electronic Signature as typed and Your RID Number
2013 MERID BYLAWS - Passed by members
A letter from the President
SEASONS OF CHANGE
The way in which we all relate to one another in this profession is changing so we can evolve with the roots of the deaf community in mind and heart. For example, Street Leverage is constantly ‘publishing’ articles from active members in the community regarding the interpreting process, teaming dynamics, and consumer perspectives which is evidence of people talking about our work openly by trespassing philosophies and discovering dialogue about taboo topics. As president I have been trying to encourage this kind of change in our community as well with bringing the Reframing Retreat, Deafhood, and encouraging community participation at events like the Walk for ASL on Mackworth Island. There is talk about making that an annual event and I look forward to joining all of your next year!
The new restructuring of MeRID is to help the board feel productive and organized. Refocusing goals for the board is one of the most important things to occur. The wonderful Bylaws committee got together and pushed out a final draft that included comments and editing from the General meeting. The voting on the Bylaws will take place at Meryl’s conference on the 28th at 4pm. I hope to see you all there making “MeRID MyRID.”
Additionally, this is my letter of acknowledgement that I am moving to DC on July 1st to work as a DeafBlind Staff Interpreter at Gallaudet University. I will miss serving on the board once someone takes my place in the upcoming elections near the end of August. It is recommended that the President and Vice President positions run as a slate position so there is good dynamics that both of them can work with. If they both prefer calling, emailing, and working at specific times, that will help make the communications and meetings regular. The board I am leaving behind has great people, determined to do what it takes to work collaboratively with each other. I will miss them. But the season of change is here to stay so I expect great things will continue.
NOMINATIONS AND ELECTION
Once the Bylaws are passed on the 28th, we can begin to collect nominations for the month of July. I need to stress that nominations can only be made by members with dual membership AND the nominee must also have a dual membership with MeRID and the national RID. If you are not a dual member- you will not get a nomination and then later a ballot card/email from MeRID. Elections will take place in August. And I will hand over the MeRID crown to the new President that you have chosen.
Jill Andrews submitted a motion to RID on the topic of requiring 20 hours of volunteer interpreting per CEU cycle and many people co-signed this motion. I would like to recognize and thank their involvement on the national level on such an important topic. Some people feel that this sort of requirement is unjustifiable while some feel it is necessary. It is important to look to other professions and recognize that most occupations honor this standard of pro bono work being incorporated in their professional development. Not only does it help one feel good but it also encourages people to engage in assignments that one many not normally take. This stretches our skills and develops relationships that may impact our daily working comfort zones.
Maine Deaf Community is becoming more active in looking for interpreters who can volunteer their time. Katie Korpi has initated a closed group FB page “Maine ASL Volunteer Interpreters” where she will post for events like the Lonebear spiritual talks and the upcoming Maine Deaf Timberfest. Please contact Katie Korpi about being added to this page (or setting up other means of contact) if you are interested in volunteer opportunities.
MeAD had their bi-annual conference recently in Saco and I want to recognize Julia Follansbee Schafer for volunteering her time as a Deafblind interpreter. It was a very important contribution as there were not many available in the midst of graduations and such.
This Saturday June 22nd at 9am, we are doing a Silver Lining Fundraiser by running (walking for some) around the Back Bay in Portland. This was a spontaneously planned event by the members with Amanda Eisenhart leading. It all started with a FB picture of new sneakers! I am so excited! I hope to see many of you there. Bring a donation of whatever amount that you can contribute and I will have a collection envelope ready. Checks can be made payable to MeRID and put Silver Lining Fund on the left line at the bottom of your check.
This is a great community, it is very difficult for me to leave it. The energy is great so I know the greatness will continue.
MAKE MERID MYRID!
Regan Thibodeau, MeRID President
LETTER FROM THE PRESIDENT
May 6, 2013
About 16 members, including our Region 1 Representative from RID- Janice Cagen-Teuber, came to the general meeting at USM in Portland. We announced that our current Vice President, Grace Cooney, is resigning so the board will appoint someone in her stead to finish out the term with me. I have loved having her as a team- she is a real go-getter who is in Graduate school and about to get married. With so much on her plate she wanted to be fair to allow MeRID to get more attention through someone else.
Our agenda was to focus on the elections and the Bylaws after discussing the MeRID restructure. We ended up eliminating the election process and formed a committee detailed below in the next section in part because Janice explained for us to make sure we all keep in mind that we are only able to vote on matters IF we hold a dual membership of both MeRID and RID Inc. Further explanation is given below.
At the end of the meeting we formally welcomed and awarded a *one-year free MeRID membership to this year’s 8 ITP graduates: Brian Dietzel, Nick Dionne, Marsha Ames, Dani Flewelling, Santina King, Emily LaRose, Krissey Taplin, and Elaine Williams. We look forward to your addition to the community!
After the meeting adjourned some went into the other room to participate in the USM ITP’s annual Interpreter Job Fair and many started showing up to be on a panel or provide interviews to help the transition of these soon to be graduating interpreting students.
*The 2011 board under President Judy passed the vote to award one-year free membership as a graduation gift to ITP students.
“Where you end and I begin.” -Anne Katherine
The restructure of MeRID is to clarify expectations of the board- as a volunteer organization, we need to be conscious of making the best use of our given time by investing in tasks the membership need for their success as an interpreter in the State of Maine.
With transparency, specified expectations may help members feel more connected with MeRID, and clarify how they can be involved with MeRID. For an example, a Newsletter was a very valuable commodity before social media became available and it was okay when this task fell upon a board member when there was a shortage of articles being handed in by members. However, with the task of trying to provide professional development in areas of need as requested by members, attending monthly meetings, writing minutes, keeping up with membership emails, recruiting members, representing MeRID at venues, etc, on top of our already busy lives, none of us have been able to fill Rosanne Ryerson’s shoes of creating a newsletter from scratch- she was the last to publish one and many miss her work. Any MeRID member can take on such tasks and if one does not volunteer, then it remains vacant, and it is now clear that the board is not responsible for the production. Rather, as a member driven chapter, the task is falling upon the membership to promote one another to particular tasks they feel one can accomplish. Various tasks can be committees heading the following; Newsletter, Pro Bono Networking, Silver Lining Fund, Membership recruitment, Forums, Special Topics activities, and so on. The more members involved, the more MeRID is represented.
It is valuable when a person feels productive, and it is priceless when a team feels the impact quotient. A ripple effect is important for one to feel they have successfully acted out their roles. Current definition of the Representatives is to act as outreach and it has left many feeling unsuccessful and oftentimes resentful. As a President, I feel it is important for any volunteer for any organization to feel their energy is well spent. Simplifying what the Representatives function as will strongly impact how the board performs as a whole.
“A representative is someone that the membership feels is one who can provide a balanced view of a specialty field they are involved with to the board in matters of voting and other activities MeRID sponsors. They are also available for contact if a member so desires to communicate about trending ideas or issues in the specialty field. However, they will not be responsible for engaging members throughout the State by means of recruitment like an outreach program.”- Regan
“Keeping together is progress. Working together is success." -Henry Ford.
Many good things resulted from the meeting. One of the bigger steps involves a spontaneously formed Bylaws Committee headed by a dual member, Marisa Zastrow. Several other dual members in attendance immediately volunteered to join to push out the Bylaws in accordance to RID by June 1st. By this date, the Bylaws final draft will be ready for commentary and editing. *This copy will be shared via mail, email, website, and Facebook. The vote on the final draft of the amended Bylaws will be made on June 28th at Meryl’s conference. We will let you know when as soon as we confirm the time.
Once the Bylaws are finalized. We will do again the election process by calling for nominations because of the now clear fact that those who wish to nominate, and the person being nominated must hold a dual membership. Also, our new Bylaws will impact how the election process is conducted. *The new Board turnover date is now set for August 1, 2013.
*The current board members slated to leave have agreed to stay on till new date.
Several concepts were brought forth during the review of the Bylaws- one of which is that perhaps the Representative positions should only be a one-year commitment rather than two to entice diversity, novice or seasoned members, into partaking in the experience of being on the board without feeling the pressure of committing when life is unpredictable. With the Bylaws committee, such concepts will be carefully evaluated.
Another result is we now have a MeRID member that volunteered to take upon the task of being the Website moderator, Jillian Schleicher. Who will help us keep the website updated with new information as they are pushed out via Email and Facebook. She will also create the membership login portal so that only those who have a MeRID membership will enter for exclusive resources.
**Standard mailings will include the following; 1) the Dual Membership listing, nomination poll, and election information, 2) annual membership drive for renewal or posting, and 3) any urgent matters at hand that impacts MeRID as a whole. All other information will be continuously available via email, website, and Facebook (note that all three are moderated by 3 different people so there may be a slight delay in updates).
“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more.”-Melody Beattie
I am very appreciative of all those who attended and contributed to the meeting. It was valuable to have all of you share your views and perspectives on the new restructure of MeRID. We look forward to putting our energy to best use that will better meet the needs of today’s membership.
On a final note of gratitude, you are cordially invited to join us in celebrating our love for ASL at the “Walk for ASL” event on May 25th on Mackworth Island at 10am. If we don’t see you there then our next meet up opportunity is at Meryl’s Conference on June 28th at Colby College!
MeRID President, Regan Thibodeau