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High Country Chapter NC 21

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A 501(c)19 Taxes Exempt Veterans Organization
Military Officers Association of America
Post Office Box 3312
Boone, NC 28607



Board of Directors Meeting
7 February 2023

  1. The Board of Directors meeting of the High Country Chapter of the Military Officers Association of America was conducted 7 Feb 2023 at Basil's, Boone, NC. The call to order by President Mary (Frankie) Groff, occurred at 1717

    1. Directors attending:
      1. Mary (Frankie) Groff (President)(Surviving Spouse)
      2. George Brudzinski LtCol, USMC (Ret),(Treasurer)
      3. Lance Campbell LTC, USA (Ret),(Secretary)
      4. Douglas (Doug) May PhD, Capt, USMC (Fmr),(Immediate Past President)(Webmaster [['Zoom-master'])
      5. Patsy Alley (Surviving Spouse)
      6. Marvin (Marv) Williamsen PhD, MAJ, USAR (Ret),(Chair History)
      7. Benjamin (Ben) Covington COL, USA (Ret),(Chair Membership)
      8. Richard (Rick) Williams CAPT USN (Ret)
      9. James (Jim) Fisher CAPT USN (Ret),(Chaplain)(Personal Affairs)

    2. Board Members Absent:
      1. Robert (Bob) Love LT USN (Fmr)
      2. Frederick (Fred) Schmitt CAPT, USCG (Ret)(1st Vice President)(Chair Nominating Committee)
      3. Melanie Trado MAJ USAR - Again, welcome Melanie,to our Board - thank you for serving - Get well soon!

    3. Quorum (8 req):Yes (9)

  2. The Agenda (Frankie) and Secretary's Report (Lance) were sent electronically to the Board prior to the meeting.
    1. BOD acknowledged receipt of same.

  3. The Pledge of Allegiance occurred at 1718 in presence of the American Flag.

  4. An invocation was next offered by Jim F., emphasizing the timely importance of being good stewards of our time, shared wisdom & thoughts. Additionally, we appreciate concern for our country on the cusp of the State of the Union address this evening. Also importantly, a strong welcome back to Ben C. after difficult health issues.

  5. The Secretary's Report, for the 10 Jan 2023 BOD meeting, held at Ransom restaurant, previously submitted as draft minutes by Lance to Frankie, Doug, Fred & George for comment, was received electronically by the Board prior to the meeting.
    1. Lance again inquired if the current arrangement of sending the Secretary's Report electronically to BOD was effective - response was positive.
    2. The Secretary's Report was accepted unanimously by the Board with no edits save a correction to 'Mount Lawn Cemetery'.

  6. The Treasurer's Report was previously submitted by George electronically to the Board. Income/Expenses were clearly itemized stating a checking account balance of $15,243.81 as of 1 Feb 2023. Included was the operating budget itemizing revenue/expenses and budget/actual amounts, again clearly communicated. Balance reflects cumulative fiscal YTD checking account interest and member dues.
    1. Report included:
      1. Cemetery flag project - $1500 budgeted accounting for the de-crease in account balance as George is now in possession of 1000 American Flags earmarked for our cemetery project.
        1. George was instrumental is saving ~$300 by his timely flags purchase before a price increase on 1 Feb 2023.
  7. Standing Business
    1. Project update on placing flags on Veterans' gravesites at Mount Lawn Cemetery:

      1. Patsy & George had scheduled a 19 Jan meeting with the Mount Lawn Cemetery Board.

        1. George reported the meeting was productive with the Mount Lawn Cemetery Board enthusiastic for this unique project.
        2. Apparently, early Facebook feedback to the Cemetery Board from families of interred veterans was encouraging at this early stage.
        3. Hampton Funeral is cooperating & best estimate is ~470 veterans' graves dispersed over ~13.5 acres.
        4. A challenge remains in identifying Veteran graves since records are incomplete.
          1. George had engaged a drone operator to photograph the cemetery site to identify sectors to investigate. Further, it may be appropriate to re-engage the drone company to capture the flag placement digitally.
          2. Lance questioned if ongoing internments will ID veterans going forward??

        5. Bob & Lynn Gibbard have offered their energies as coordinators to procure and schedule volunteer groups and generate a lead job description and coordinate other VSO participation.
          1. George has been in contact with Finley Hodges of the American Legion who are willing to participate.
          2. Lance suggested that Blue Star mothers may be willing - especially since Marsha Finley forwarded a thank-you note for the recent HCCMOAA $150 contribution.
          3. Patsy & George had previously distributed a Tentative Timeline for our Flag Project which is being updated as Memorial day approaches.
            1. Jan - meet with Mount Lawn Board - done
            2. February - ID volunteer base - Bob/Lynn
            3. Feb - submit MOAA Grant app - George
            4. March - ID graves??
            5. April - finalize volunteer groups
            6. May - coordinate with local media
            7. 27 May - place flags
            8. 29 May - Memorial Day
            9. 3 June - remove flags

          4. MOAA offers a Community Grant award for such an activity - George is following up with National - deadline 28 Feb 2023. This application requires a recent HCCMOAA budget, proof of liability insurance etc.

    2. The name of the event is still in discussion - possibles include:
      1. Flags over the High Country
      2. Mountain Warrior Flags of Honor
      3. Flags of Honor over the High Country
      4. Flags of Remembrance over the High Country
      5. Remembering & Honoring our High Country Veterans
      6. Flags over High Country Heroes
      7. Flags over the High Country for our heroes

        1. A lively discussion followed:
          1. Remembering (Memorial Day)
          2. Honoring (Veterans Day)
          3. 'Community Reintegration' was a suggested theme by MOAA.
          4. George mentioned the word 'Flags' may be favorable for our MOAA grant request.
          5. George & Patsy shall be the final arbiters considering all inputs.

    3. ASU ROTC/WHS MCJROTC update:
      1. Bob notified BOD of continuing communication with D.J. Weatherford (ASU ROTC) and Wes Young (WHS MCJROTC) on mutual co-operation.
        1. Wes welcomes continuing the HCCMOAA lecture series inaugurated in Winter 2022 (~40 cadets) - time frame: Feb 2023, 1000 Thurs AM.
          1. Wes had commented that, ideally, different speakers vs 2022, since the same MCJROTC cadets may be attending as last year.
          2. Identification of the speakers list:
            1. USCG - Fred - 2 Feb
            2. USN - Jim F. - 9 Feb
            3. USMC - Doug
            4. USA - Bob G.
            5. USAF - Joe Lea
          3. WHS requires an online available 'Background Check' for all guests (including non-speakers) to be completed 7-10 d prior to entering WHS building. The delay in processing is noted.

    4. Membership Committee:
      1. No report.

    5. HCCMOAA 'Holiday Party' - 14 Feb 2023 Valentines Day.
      1. George offered that his contact @ Marriott has updated suggested menus/costs:
        1. BOD had agreed the pasta buffet was ideal with lasagna as well as vegetarian selection = $30/person including gratuity/tax + cash bar.
      2. George is in contact with a florist regarding obtaining Valentine Roses.
      3. Frankie suggested an early (~1700) arrival to prep the tables.
      4. Frankie has sent a 'Save-the-Date' email to membership.
      5. Jim F. included an invitation our recent Newsletter.
      6. George has offered to be POC for RSVPs sent to
        1. 828 963 3475
        2. Current responses suggest ~38 attendees.
      7. Rick W. offered to donate wine for the event - George will in-quire with Marriott.

    6. Jim F. has submitted the application for the MOAA Harris Communica-tion award - deadline 1 Feb.

    7. 'Heroes on the Mountain' ski event benefitting disabled @ Appalachian Ski Mt is scheduled for 4 March.
      1. Previously, HCCMOAA has supported this event @ $500 level.
        1. Requestor is Chapter Member CPT Chuck Rhodes USN (Ret).
        2. BOD unanimously agreed to support @ $500 again - Check to be available @ 14 Feb event.

    8. Blood Sweat & Gears Bike race (~17 June) has contacted HCCMOAA requesting interest in volunteers & support for Veteran riders (~18) for dinner/breakfast.
      1. Consensus is to support BS & G as in the recent years. ($500)

    9. Rick Williams presented a local idea addressing successful 'Veteran Coffee House' events he has supported in Mooresville area.
      1. Interest was offered with further information from Rick W. at next BOD meeting.

    10. Since Ransom restaurant had encountered some personnel changes & scheduling conflict with 1st Wed, options considered:
      1. Elect to meet earlier - e.g. 1600.
      2. Elect a lunchtime meeting
      3. No meal
      4. Elect a different day.
      5. Elect a different venue.
      6. BOD consensus with Frankie's recommendation for Basils restaurant was to meet Tuesday 7 Feb 1700 @ Basils.
        1. Basils Manager: Patrick Sullivan
          1. Frankie has met with Noosheen as Basils POC.
      7. This evening's meeting was well served by Basils; parking adequate = consensus to continue 1st Tues/month.

  8. The meeting was adjourned at 1825 by unanimous decision with next BOD meeting scheduled for 7 Feb 2023 (Tues) @1700 Basils Restaurant.

Respectfully submitted,

Lance Campbell LTC, USA (Ret)