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Board Minutes

MSAD Board Meeting - January 23 & 24, 2016

MSAD Board Meeting

January 23 & 24, 2016 in Framingham, Massachusetts

Submitted by Secretary, LeWana Clark


DAY 1: January 23, 2016

9 am to 5 pm at Advocates, Inc., 1881 Worcester Street, Framingham, MA





  • President: Andrew Veith


  • Vice-President of Operations: Katherine Lees


  • Vice-President of Public Relations: Stephanie Hakulin


  • Treasurer: Branic Keltz


  • Secretary: LeWana Clark


Elected Members



  • Michelle Dunn


  • Jonathon LeJeune


  • Lena Laferriere


  • Sean O’Brien


  • Joe Toledo


  • Ashley Thompson





  • Wayne Dore – Old Board member
  • BJ Wood – Old Board member
  • Jonah Meehan – Old Board member
  • Randee Pascall-Speights – Old Board member
  • Ashley O’Niell – Old Board member
  • Lorna Laferriere – Old Board member
  • Ivy Velez – Old Board member
  • Alan Gifford – Old Board member
  • Carol Zurek



Call to Order: 9:21 AM


Oath of new Board of Directors


Update from 2014-2016 President – Alan Gifford

  • Welcome to new Board members.
  • Thank you to past Board members.
  • MSAD has no commitment or financial ties to other organizations.
    • But several organizations use our bank account at Rockville Federal Credit Union but each organization has their own separate bank account and ATM card.
  • Grant monies received for another project is not related to MSAD.
    • There has been no check to MSAD and MSAD did not write a letter of support for the grant application.
  • MSAD storage access transferred to President Veith & Branic Keltz.
  • MSAD credit union account access transferred to President Veith & Branic Keltz.
  • Still need to update the documents required for the Massachusetts Secretary of State.
  • MSAD Post Office box (at South Station) has 2 keys.
    • Jennifer Greenfield has one and the second key given to President Veith.
    • Perhaps Lori Novak can check the box regularly because she commutes through South Station.
  • MSAD has a good relationship with DPC (Disability Policy Consortium).
    • Access card has been given to President Veith.
    • We have cubicle office space and boxes on the second floor.
  • Treasurer Charles Johnson has not been doing well because of his health. This Wednesday, January 27, 2016, Branic Keltz and Past-President Gifford will meet with him to transfer all MSAD materials.
    • The current balance in the operational fund is about $9,000.00.
    • The conference account balance is about $10,000.
    • MSAD is financially healthy.
    • Investment account is with Kramer.
      • We started with about $209,000 after sale of MSAD office building.
      • Over the last 2 years our investment account has grown to about $260,000.
  • All debts to IRS have been paid.
  • The application for renewal of non-profit status with IRS has been submitted.
    • President Veith expects official papers to be received in another month or so.
  • The financial records are completed and sorted and ready to be transferred to the new board.
  • MSAD copy machine is still at Past-President Gifford’s home.
    • The current value is between $500 to $700.
    • It is used frequently to make copies for the DCN.
    • The copy machine needs parts to work again but the parts will cost about $700.
  • There is a new Deaf Community Center in Whitman.
    • This center has no connection with MSAD but MSAD can use the facility. It is an old school with gym, kitchen, and smaller rooms for events.
    • The center is close to public transportation and major roadways.
  • READS just purchased 10 acres in Middleboro and plans to build a Deaf Community Center
  • Massachusetts Legislature
    • There are many legislative opportunities for MSAD.
    • Past-President Gifford is willing to introduce new Board members to Legislators who he has been working with.
  • LeWana Clark needs to update MSAD member contact information from the conference sign in sheet.


Treasurer Report Update – Charles Johnson

  • CJ did not attend meeting.
  • MSAD 2015 report needs to be filed with the Secretary of State.
  • President Veith and Branic Keltz will meet soon to get MSAD materials from CJ
  • Sorenson check needs to be deposited and then a check needs to be written to Worcester Deaf Club (original check should have been made out to WDC not to MSAD)
  • Treasurer’s report (not completed at conference) needs to be done.
    • President Veith will add to plan of action to be completed within 3 months


Secretary Minutes Reports (2014 and 2015) Updates - Jennifer Greenfield (did not attend meeting)

  • Minutes shared.
  • Minutes from past conference may not be complete and needs to be reviewed.
    • Correction - Ashley O’Niell was not at the business meeting so her name needs to be removed.


Critical issues added to agenda – BJ Wood

  • Proud to see so many MSAD representatives at MCDHH SAC meeting this week.
  • MCDHH provided mini-training on how to talk with legislators.
  • Legislative issues of interest:
    • Interpreter Licensure Bill (Senate Bill #204/205).
      • MSAD needs to set up a Legislative Committee with specific tasks.
        • Analyze and prepare report prior to next Board meeting on April 23, 2016.
        • Find out MassRID’s position on this the bill.
        • Important to make decision prior to the Deaf Constituents Day on April 28, 2016.


[PASSED] 2016:01 MOTION by Katherine Lees/seconded by Michelle Dunn.

MSAD should create a Legislative Committee within one month from today.


[PASSED as amended] 2016:02 MOTION/AMENDMENT by Katherine Lees/seconded by Branic Keltz.

The MSAD Legislative Committee shall write an overview report as to the status of the Interpreter License Bill to be available to Board members one week before the next MSAD Board meeting.

  • AMENDMENT by Stephanie Hakulin/seconded by Ashley Thompson.
  • The report shall include information gathered from MassRID at their March 6, 2016 meeting.


Information shared from past Board members

  • Vice-President of Operations – Jonah Meehan
    • It has been difficult to keep momentum and energy going over time.
    • Being a Board member is a way to give back to the Community with your time, money, ideas, skills, and energy.
    • Listen to community comments even if comments are negative. Don’t take these comments personally but use them as an opportunity to create change for MSAD.
    • The true leaders of MSAD are the members.
    • Board members need to keep connections and information flowing with local Deaf organizations.
    • Posting official communications, including minutes, timely.
      • Draft Board minutes within 48 hours.
      • Approval by next meeting.


  • Vice-President of PR – Ivy Velez
    • Has been challenging to work with many groups within the Deaf Community.
      • People are watching MSAD to see what will happen with the new board.
    • People are starving for social events.
    • We need to find people who are not currently connected with MSAD.
    • Encourage people to join MSAD – still have free membership.
    • Lucky to have so many things available electronically via the website.


  • Bylaws – Ashley O’Niell
    • Many modifications have been made to the Bylaws over the last 10 years.
    • Policy and Procedures Guidelines have been drafted and are separate from the Bylaws document. These are based on NAD’s model.
    • New bylaws haven’t been accepted so the new Board must follow the 2014 version.
      • New bylaws give the Board many options on meeting and governing the organization, clarification of board duties, requirements of voting members, committee structure, appointment of special Board members, request for special meetings, chain of communication, etc.
      • We need a special meeting to discuss and approve the new proposed Bylaws and Policy and Procedure Guidelines (PPG).
    • Proposed Bylaws and PPG will be posted on Goggle drive for the new board to use as a guide (prior to approval).


  • Conference Planning Co-Chairs – Ivy Velez & Carol Zurek
    • 2011 Conference was held without budget but we had MANY volunteers.
    • 2015 Conference was held with budget but hard to get volunteers.
    • Challenging to find convenient conference location for everyone.
    • Need people to respond to request for volunteer help.
    • We need to explore joint conference with other organizations.
    • We need Board members to be active in Community events.
    • Suggest the next conference at a hotel but will need sponsors and a budget.


OLD Business


[PASSED as amended] 2016:03 MOTION/AMENDMENT by Lena Laferriere/seconded by Joe Toledo.

MSAD shall revisit the NEHD (New England Homes for the Deaf) issues by appointing an ad hoc committee.

  • AMENDMENT by Stephanie Hakulin, seconded by Lena Laferriere.
  • The ad hoc committee shall refer to previous notes and plan of action about this issue.


  • Discussion:
  • NEHD just hired new interim Director.
  • We need to keep our eye on them and give them support.
  • Past minutes and notes on this issue should be posted so everyone can access them.
  • We need to be mindful about our goal of building trust with the Community and work with NEHD.
    • Any discussion on this topic will be done in open meetings unless the Board receives a specific request for an executive session/closed session.


President Veith steps down as chair and Vice-President Lees presides over the meeting.


[PASSED] 2016:04 MOTION by Andrew Veith/seconded by Ashley Thompson.

The treasurer will have the Financial and Audit report (motion 10.2015:10) completed by the new date of April 23, 2016 (the old date was 10/30/15).


President Veith presides over the meeting again.


Break for lunch


Review of conference motions referred to the Board.

  • Motion referred to Bylaws Committee
    • 11.2015:02 – staggered elections
  • Motions referred to Vice-President/Public Relations
    • 11.2015:06 - MSAD visit all Deaf schools every year and give MSAD presentation and leadership
    • 11.2015:07 - Schools serving Deaf students identify MSAD liaison
    • 11.2015:08 - MSAD host 3 regional events every year
    • 11.2015:12 – Set up a Social Committee
  • Motions referred to Vice-President/Operations
    • 11.2015:10 – MSAD representative to MCDHH Statewide Advisory Council
    • 11.2015:11 - Ad hoc committee for Reorganizational Committee and report with master plan - completed by October 1, 2016
      • Much of the reorganization work has already been done with the proposed bylaws and PPG
    • 11.2015:13 – Explore possibility of setting up a Deaf Club (see motion below)
  • Motion referred to Legislative Committee
    • 11.2015:16 - Support bills of interest to D/HH including Licensure Bill and also provide training to the Community
  • Motion referred to the Youth Committee
    • 11.2015:05 – Send Deaf Youth to Youth Leadership Camp every year


[PASSED] 2016:05 MOTION by Sean O’Brien/seconded by Stephanie Hakulin.

Board agrees to refer conference motion 2015:13 to Vice-President of Operations to establish an ad hoc committee to explore the possibility of setting up a Deaf Club.


[PASSED] 2016:06 MOTION by Michelle Dunn/seconded by Joe Toledo.

MSAD shall set up an ad hoc task force to explore the substance abuse issues in the Deaf Community and Michelle Dunn will accept the chair leadership position.

  • Discussion
    • MSAD needs representative to get involved with the MSAD task force on substance abuse to find out how the state is spending the $250,000 budget.
    • Monies needed for after-care and residential programs.


[PASSED] 2016:07 MOTION by Ashley Thompson/seconded by Katherine Lees.

MSAD Board agrees to table motion 11.2015:10 for further review.

  • Discussion
    • MSAD needs a new representative on the MCDHH Statewide Advisory Council (SAC) because the previous MSAD representative stopped attending the meetings after MSAD term of service. President Veith will follow up with Commissioner Reed to get the necessary paperwork for a new MSAD representative to be our SAC representative
    • MSAD needs a person to serve on the MCDHH SAC for a 4-year term.


[WITHDRAWN] 2016:08 MOTION by Katherine Lees/seconded by Ashley Thompson. The Board will adopt the role of reorganizing MSAD and create a master plan by the next public meeting.


Housekeeping Items

  • Reminder – May 2014 minutes and November 2015 minutes must be shared and approved at next general meeting.
  • Transition discussions from old Board to new Board and updates for each officers and directors will be done individually on their own time.
  • Additional items for discussion will be addresses on email/Google docs/doodle.
    • Vision, Goals, and Priorities (discussion from Symposium/Survey)
      • Youth
      • Substance Abuse
      • Social events
    • Set up Public Meetings
      • Follow up on Treasurer and Secretary Minutes Report and remaining of old businesses
      • Follow up on Bylaws and Policy and Procedures Guidelines
    • Set up Board Quarterly meetings proposed dates (4th Saturday of the month)
      • April 23, 2016
      • June 25, 2016
      • September 24, 2016 (Annual General Meeting) full day
      • January 28, 2017
      • April 22, 2017
      • June 24, 2017
      • September 22-24, 2017 (State Conference) two days
      • Perhaps MSAD will host a Community Event following each Board meeting.
    • Set up Committees (Chairpersons):
      • Audit Committee (President)
      • Finance Committee (Treasurer)
      • Outreach Committee (Secretary)
      • Legislative Committee (President)
      • Events Committee (Vice-President of Public Relations)
      • Action Plan Committee {Ad hoc Committee} (President)
      • Language and Education Committee {Ad hoc Committee} (President) 
      • Policy Committee {Bylaws and Policy & Procedures Guidelines} (Vice-President of Operations)


The meeting was cancelled due to Blizzard 2016 hazardous road conditions. The Board will not meet tomorrow (January 24, 2016) as planned.



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