February 21, 2022 – BOARD MINUTES
Society of St Vincent de Paul Council of Seattle/King County
To be approved at the March 21, 2022 – Board Meeting
Mary Jo Shannon, (President); Sandra McGowan, (Vice President); Dave Cullen, (Treasurer); Adelfa Moreno, (Secretary); Paul Litwin, (NW Seattle); Jim Jordan, (E King); Mary Sweeney, (S Seattle); Manuel Figueroa, (S King); Mary Kay Snedden, (NE Seattle); Harry Oestreich, (NE King); Dennis Cook, (NW Seattle); Ed Sarasaud and Mary Beth Sheehan, (at large members); Father Bob Grimm and Tricia Wittman-Todd (Spiritual Advisors).
NON-VOTING STAFF AND GUESTS:
Mirya Munoz-Roach, Executive Director; Mike Ewanciw, CFO, Jo Burkholder, Associate Director for Mission Renewal and Vincentian Support, Ned Delmore, Senior Advisor, Chris Kelsh, Helpline Center Supervisor, and Bob Rohrbach, Guest, (Our Lady of Sorrows).
After an opening prayer, the meeting was called to order at 6:30pm. A motion was made to approve the draft of the January 2022 minutes. The motion was seconded by Ed Sarasaud. Discussion ensued. Mary Sweeney and Tricia Wittman-Todd both stated that their last names were misspelled. Secondly, Paul Litwin noted that his precinct report was not included in the precinct reports. Lastly, Jim Jordan questioned whether 1099 was an appropriate topic title. He believes it should read W-9 issue instead. Additionally, Jim Jordan stated that his conference works with Eastside Catholic for their Christmas Program. They are not just starting this relationship. All the referenced corrections will be made. The motion then passed unanimously.
Finance: Dave Cullen reported that SVdP is running a profit. The society is $104,000 above budget. It had expected a loss of $12,000.
Update on Audit: SVdP needs a special auditor because it received federal grant money. BWC has proposed to do a hybrid. It will have a specialized firm handle the audit regarding the federal grant. Next year BWC will go back to being the society’s long-term auditors.
Annual Dues: Conferences have stated that they are not being billed for dues. Mike Ewanciw is currently working on billing conferences.
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S REPORT:
Mirya reported the following:
- Georgetown – The buildings are old. Repairs are ongoing. Issues arise when it snows and/or as a result of heavy rain.
- Kent – SVdP just spent a significant amount of money putting a fence around this store. Security and safety were a concern for employees due to un-housed neighbors urinating around the building and trash being left everywhere.
- Burien/Renton – Both of these stores have had break-ins. They have thankfully lessened from last summer.
- Kenmore/Aurora – The conversation with Aurora Commons has continued. SVdP is waiting for a Letter of Intent from them. Aurora Commons will need to be able to cover the $13,000 monthly mortgage. Additionally, SVdP is negotiating Aurora Commons’ ability to pay for building upgrades. The lease agreement will be for 10 to no more than 15 years.
Program Updates (EPRARP & SERAP) – EPRAP is scheduled to end on February 28th. However, SVdP will continue to assist the county with the landlord program. As for the city of Seattle Eviction Rental Assistance Program (SERAP), Jo Burkholder reported that SVdP has a balance of $222,663.14. The society is currently working with 49 neighbors. Vincentians may continue to refer city of Seattle neighbors to SERAP.
Fundraising: Blue Dress Event – This is SVdPs main fundraiser of the year. The event is scheduled for Tuesday, May 17, 2022, at Seattle University. This will be a hybrid event. Brunch will be served at 11 am. A save the date will be mailed out soon. Board members are asked to each help fill a table.
Vincentian Appreciation Event – Mirya proposed hosting this event in the fall. Mary Jo asked that precinct chairs have a discussion with their conferences about this event being held in the fall.
Program Spotlight – The Helpline: Chris Kelsh, Helpline Center Supervisor, reported that one positive development that has occurred at the helpline is that SVdP hired a helpline intake specialist. When a neighbor calls the helpline and there is no active conference in their area and/or the conference does not provide assistance with the type of need being requested, the neighbor is referred to the helpline intake specialist. The specialist can help the neighbor with other sources of help through SVdP programs or services and/or refer them to outside programs and social services through other agencies. Moreover, the helpline intake specialist can also screen neighbors for case management. This new position has helped bridge the gap between the helpline, case management, and other departments.
Additionally, Chris stated that he hired a Spanish-speaking individual to help at the helpline. Calls from Spanish speakers have increased over the past two years. Chris hopes to get more Spanish-speaking volunteers.
Quota Pilot Committee Report – Mary Kay reported that she, Chris Kelsh, Sandra McGowan, and Mary Sweeney gathered to review the conference capacity limit pilot program and made recommendations. The following was one of the many concerns conveyed by the helpline supervisor Chris Kelsh, “It is frustrating for helpline staff to have to explain to neighbors that a conference’s quota has been reached.” Please see the attached report for further detail regarding concerns, suggestions, and recommendations.
Mary Jo stated that conferences should be challenging themselves to meet the needs of neighbors. They should also be open to what those needs are. As for the conferences that are struggling, we (other conferences) should be open to helping them.
Mary Jo proposed that Manny, Mary Sweeney, and Dennis sit down with Jo and Rocio and have a strategic discussion with the conferences that are part of this pilot and focus on the following questions 1) Where is your conference at? Where is your conference going? How can the council be of assistance to your conference? Conversely, then have Mary Kay Snedden, Paul, Harry, and Jim gather with their conferences and report if their conferences are open to financially and/or people twin.
MISSION RENEWAL & VINCENTIAN UPDATES
Jo Burkholder, Associate Director for Mission Renewal and Vincentian Support gave a PowerPoint presentation about what Mission Renewal and Vincentian Support entails. Please see the attached presentation slides.
Conference Support Fund – Manny, Mary Jo, Mary Sweeney, and Jo met to review conference support applications. Four proposals were received from the following conferences: Our Lady of Guadalupe/Holy Family, St. Francis of Assisi, St. George, and St. Bernadette. The group recommended that all four conferences be awarded the following amounts for the next three months. St. Francis of Assisi $3,000/mo., St. Bernadette $1,500/mo., St. George $1,000/mo., and Our Lady of Guadalupe/ Holy Family $4,000/mo. Dave Cullen moved to approve these recommendations. Sandra McGowan seconded the recommendations. Upon vote, the recommendation passed unanimously.
Discussion of the Bylaws – Mary Jo reported that she met with precinct chairs. They came to the recommendation of splitting South King County into two precincts (East and West). Please note that St. Luke’s is part of the NW precinct and St. Catherine is part of the NE precinct. This matter will be discussed in further detail at the next board meeting.
Board Development – Due to time constraints, President Mary Jo struck this topic.
City of Kent Guest Speaker (further discussion) – Due to time constraints, this topic was not discussed.
Dennis (Central Seattle): Conferences in this precinct continue to meet remotely. Immaculate Conception now has a bank account. Discussion has ensued regarding the closure of St. Patrick’s conference.
Mary Kay (NE Seattle): Mary Kay held a precinct meeting in January. Conferences in this precinct are doing well. Many are helping South King County with either people or financial twining. Moreover, some conferences are providing assistance to Afghani neighbors.
Jim (E King): Jim held a precinct meeting on February 10th. In the month of January conferences in this precinct spent $9,200 on neighbor requests. Some conferences have expressed frustration with twinning. The conference providing financial assistance would like a report of how the money donated was spent and/or receive a thank you note. Jim also asked that the minutes be released to precinct chairs sooner than the week before the monthly board meeting.
Manuel (S King): Manuel is working on scheduling a precinct meeting. Both the treasurer and vice president resigned at St. Thomas conference.
Mary Sweeney (S Seattle): Mary hosted a precinct meeting on February 19th and asked for a list of motels/hotels that are willing to work with SVdP neighbors. Conferences in this precinct are focused on helping our un-housed neighbors.
Harry (NE King): Harry asked if the recording of the board meeting can be posted on the member website and/or receive the minutes earlier.
Paul (NW Seattle): Paul asked if there was an update regarding mattress requests. Additionally, he inquired about ‘stuff the truck.’
The meeting closed at 8:30pm with a prayer.
NEXT MEETING: March 21, 2022, via Zoom; 5:30pm (Finance meeting); 6:30pm (Board meeting)
Respectfully submitted: Adelfa Moreno | Board Secretary