Minutes: August 8, 2023


Board Members: Emina Darakjy, Bob Blum, Sarah Gaskin, Mona Cummings, Laura Burnett, Emily Spillett, Magen Shaw, Meha Senthil, Sarah Gaskin, Nancy Sappington, Raquel Falco.

Staff: Nancy Hughes, Deb Etheredge, Dorothy Abeyta.


12.03 PM Call to order – Emina

12:05 PM – Review and Approve Agenda – Emina

12:07 PM – Approve Consent Calendar – Emina

12:08 PM – Old Business

Strategic Plan Review (12:08 PM – 12:40 PM) – Emily Spillett

  • The Plan was sent to the Board on August 2, 2023 for review. Nancy S. did not receive it.
  • Strategies were reviewed by the Board.
  • “Strategic Plan is Work for the Board to carry out.”
  • Research needs to be done on how the Board can evaluate its performance. A system of performance review needs to be implemented.
  • By-laws state the Board needs a minimum of 8 and a maximum of 20 board members.
  • How to find or raise funding to hire a fundraising coordinator.
  • VOTE on approval of Strategic Plan – APPROVED

Executive Director Transition Committee (12:41 PM – 12:42 PM) – Emina, Nancy S.

  • ED Search Committee is meeting weekly.
  • Waiting for the survey results from the Board members.
  • Need to review the current job description and update it.

Conference at TreeTopia (12:43 PM – 12:51 PM) – Sarah, Nancy, Deb

  • The CaUFC event was very successful.
  • More attendees in the CaUFC sessions than any of the other educational sessions.
  • John Melvin attended the entire day. He felt it was very successful.
  • Miranda Hutten (USFS) was impressed with the speakers and the outdoor atmosphere.
  • The speakers were great and imparted important knowledge to the attendees.
  • Attendees were fully engaged in the panel discussion.
  • TreeTopia overall was attended by 900+ people.
  • Sarah Gaskin is a rockstar, and CaUFC is very grateful to have been a participant.
  • Recommendation: CaUFC should participate in this event every year.

Fundraising planning (12:52 PM) – Nancy H

  • CaUFC is planning to apply for Strategic Growth Council Funding. The letter is due in early September. Asha and Laura are helping craft the letter.

Banking Updates (12:53 PM – 12:56 PM)

  • The documents for Beneficial Bank were attached to the Board packet again
  • The Board needs to decide what action it wants to take, as this must be a Board decision and not a decision made by the ED.
  • Tree Fresno has been pleased with the service received from Beneficial.
  • Beneficial has an office in Oakland. Nancy can make an appointment to interview the bank and discuss CaUFC’s needs.
  • The Board moved and approved to empower Nancy H. to interview Beneficial Bank on behalf of the Board.

Board Recruitment (12:57 PM – 1:03 PM)  Nancy H.

  • The Board should form an Ad hoc committee to recruit new Board Members.
  • The requirement to recruit new Board Members is in the By-laws because it was considered important. The by-laws state that this activity begins in the month of August every year.
  • Should the Board not want to engage in this activity a vote must be taken because it is in the by-laws.
  • Mona volunteered to take on this task.

1:03 PM – Vote to extend the meeting for up to 30 minutes was taken and approved.

1:04 PM – New Business

CNPS Bill requiring native plants in public spaces (1:04 PM – 1:13 PM) – NOT ON THE AGENDA

  • CaUFC, ReLeaf, and TreePeople have been working to rebut or mitigate the language in this bill.
  • Kelaine Ravdin wrote a very science-grounded letter to the author of the bill.
  • Board discussion of the issues with this bill.
  • Meha would like to see an “Educational Network” around these issues set up to help bring some science to bear on this legislation.
  • Schedule a separate call for further discussion

Board discussion regarding the meeting with Walter Passmore (1:14 PM – 1:19 PM) – Emina

  • Emina sent an email to Walter to thank him for inviting the CaUFC Board to meet in person.
  • Emina also asked what she can do to prepare for the meeting.
  • A date needs to be set. October 6th in Sacramento is currently a possible date.
  • Meeting logistics also need to be worked out. Meet at SacTree or in CalFire building?

Budget and Financials (1:20 PM – 1:23 PM) – Nancy H

  • There is no new grant funding this grant cycle from CalFire which is not a typical scenario and will leave a shortfall in next years’ budget.
  • Forest Service/CalFire has put restrictions on how CaUFC uses the funding, e.g., all publications using Forest Service/CalFire funds need CalFire approval – i.e., web content, brochures, flyers, etc.
  • IRA Grant could possibly come through but not guaranteed.
  • This budget shortfall requires further attention from the Board.

1:26 PM – Adjourn – Emina

Share This