April 18 Board Meeting Highlights

April 21, 2021

By John Jennings

Quick Bits 

A policy is being drafted related to safe practices working with children in accordance with our Church Mutual Insurance requirements. Linda Besant and Mary Woods expect to have a draft ready for the May meeting.

Executive Director Report

Linda Grove reported that a decision has been made by the SCOL Team to hold individual retreats  through September 1. Then they will get ready for the Mahamudra Retreat.

Volunteer Support Team is taking a break after collecting descriptions for all the volunteer teams.

Because various levels of pricings are available for all classes and retreats, the Scholarship Team has determined there is no need for scholarships or discounts except for non-SCOL residential retreats or seminars.

The Retreat Team is working on an explanation of retreat/class pricing and will make it available when complete.

The Shrine Statue mold is complete. Next will be the casting and finish work.

KCC’s damaged Geo Prism has been donated to OPB and the remainder of the year’s insurance will be refunded.

President’s Report

John welcomed our new Board members to their first regular meeting.

Ryan Fitz was appointed as the Board’s Program Council member.

The Board Goals below were approved via email vote following discussion at the last Board meeting.

  1. Create a comprehensive ethical conduct policy.  Develop procedures to implement and monitor ethical conduct. Develop and execute a training plan on our ethics policy. Deliver one training.
  2. Support the Resident Lama to develop an inclusivity statement for KCC. Participate in and ensure the development of an inclusivity action plan.
  3. Identify, recruit and on-board at least six new Board members. Support the transition back to in-person operations while maintaining remote accessibility
  4. Revamp our development function, form a new expanded development team.
  5. Develop and begin to implement a facilities accessibility needs inventory and accessibility plan for the Portland Center and SCOL.
  6. Ensure creation of a new strategic plan

SCOL Report

SCOL staffer Sarah Lyon provided a verbal report of activities.

The team is still battling the ground squirrel population out here. Negotiations have failed and there was a small amount of damage to a cabin. Owl boxes have been installed to bring more owls to the property. One possible solution is enlisting the resident cougar (see photo taken by Sarah’s remote camera).

Sarah has been awarded a scholarship from the Tsadra Foundation for a 3-year program to study Tibetan language translation at Rangjung Yeshe in Kathmandu. The first semester, and likely the first year, will be online beginning mid-August. Sarah will remain on the property and work halftime while attending classes online.

Policy and criteria for determining Executive Sessions

Willa Rabinovitch asked that the Board establish a clear set of criteria for Executive Sessions (meetings closed to all but the Board and invited participants) and define who should be included in these meetings.

For the record, the current By-Laws state that Executive Sessions are “…for matters of a sensitive nature, including but not limited to employment of an Executive Director, evaluation of an Executive Director, all proceedings of the Board’s Grievance Committee, deliberation by the Board on grievances, and discussion about litigation or personnel issues.”

Willa has offered a proposal for the Board to work on and bring back to the May Board meeting for discussion. Rosemary, Sandy, Phil and John will prepare some background on our prior use of Executive Sessions and prepare draft criteria.

Informing and Involving the Sangha in Restructuring Roles and Responsibilities

KCC’s Board enlisted Cliff Lenton to assess our current structure and roles and responsibilities across the organization and recommend improvement with the goals of clarifying responsibilities and decision-making authority; improving communication and transparency with the sangha; enhance volunteer recruitment, engagement and appreciation; facilitate strategic and annual planning; and modify Linda Grove’s current workload.

After two Executive Sessions reviewing Cliff’s findings and recommendations, the Board of Directors is now drafting a plan to reshape KCC’s organizational structure to be more straightforward and effective. We will be ready to share our first draft and ask for sangha input soon.

Financial Report

The March financial reports indicate that we are doing OK this year to date. We have 4.8 months of reserve in the General Fund. We have had a lower amount of personal one-time donations than this same time last year but program revenue is up.

The Facilities team reported that the heating system upgrade was $5,000 over budget, and to prepare for people returning to the center we need to repair the ramp, add a pathway from the sidewalk to the ramp, and expand the deck at the top of the ramp. The estimate for the ramp project, given rising materials costs and the addition of the paved path, is now $25,000 rather than $15,000. We also anticipate an unexpected $3,000 heating systems upgrade.  We approved these added costs, to be paid from the Maintenance and Renovation Fund.