Attendees: 17(Al Jaccoma, Hugh Bruce, Bob Carpenter, Bob Grossman, Pete Bronson, Frank Stearns, Tom Siracuse, Bill Gilson, Sally Davidson, Jerry Hassett, Kathy Hager, John MacDougall, Greg Posnick, Don Simpson, Adam Lessuck, Nelson Levitt, Bob Keilbach).
1. Introductions - The meeting started with introductions at 7 PM, chaired by Chapter 34 Pres Al Jaccoma. A moment of silence was held for Milton Wolff, the last commander of the American volunteers who fought the fascists during the Spanish Civil War, and a longtime commander of the Veterans of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade, who passed at 92.
2. Treasury Report - Bob C reported that the treasury currently has $671 on hand. Meeting attendees contributed toward the cost of the meeting room at the Community Church.
3. Executive Committee Actions – It was agreed that actions taken by the Executive Committee would be presented at the subsequent general meeting, as stated in the bylaws. The following actions were approved at the January 17 Executive Meeting:
a. Meeting time was changed to 6:00 PM prior to each general meeting.
b. Chapter events schedule would be reviewed by incoming officers and the Executive Committee as the first order of business at the February 21st meeting.
c. Meeting Chairperson should be impartial, and recuse him/herself from the discussion, in accordance with Robert’s Rules. Chair can participate in a particular issue only if it relinquishes the chair during discussion of that issue.
d. Meeting must be conducted in a civil manner, with respect for the rights of all participants. Bob C volunteered to act as enforcer of these rules.
4. Dave Cline Memorial Celebration, NYC - The celebration of Dave’s life as an antiwar activist, labor organizer and humanitarian took place on Sunday January 13 at Connolly’s on West 45 St. Donations to VFP will be used to fund VFP antiwar events in Dave’s honor. Jerry Hassett recommended presenting Paul Zulkowitz, aka Zool, with an honorary VFP membership for his dedication and hard work in organizing the event.
5. Nomination of Chapter Officers – It was agreed that the nominees for chapter officers: President, VP, Secretary and Treasurer, would provide a brief oral description of their qualifications for the job, as well as future plans for chapter activities prior to the election, which will be conducted on Thursday Feb. 7. The existing Chapter 34 bylaws, which address office responsibilities, meetings, election eligibility & procedures, were e-mailed to chapter members, and hard copies provided at the meeting. Current nominations are as follows:
President: Carl Foster, Hugh Bruce
VP: Frank Stearns, Hugh Bruce
Treasurer: Bob Carpenter,
Secretary: Bob Keilbach,
The current roster of chapter members will be available at the Feb. 7 meeting, in the event that some forget to bring their current VFP membership cards.
6. Queens Dave Cline Memorial/Fundraiser - Anne Eagan of Woodside Peace and West Queens Greens has organized a fund-raising event to honor Dave’s life and raise money for his favorite charity, Vietnam Victims of Agent Orange. The event will include a showing of “Sir-No Sir” at the Terraza Café, 40-19 Gleane St., Elmhurst, Queens (off Roosevelt Ave. between 83 - 84 St.) on Saturday evening February 2. Frank is working with Anne regarding providing speakers, and to help publicize the event. Pete will contact Susan Schnall of the Agent Orange Campaign.
7. Chapter direction - AJ led a discussion regarding the direction of the chapter, and proposals for upcoming events. The general consensus of the membership was that we need to work in coalition and have greater interaction with national VFP activities, IVAW, MFSO, BVSJ, friends of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade, etc.
8. New Business/Upcoming Events
a. Friday, Jan 18th, 2008, 9-10:30 AM - Iraq Moratorium - Protest use of NY Ports for the Iraq War.
Morning Protest - Meet at Theatre Row Diner, 424 W 42nd St between 9th and 10th Ave. at 8AM, for flyering at the Port Authority Bus Terminal to inform commuters about how the Port Authority is using our ports to ship military equipment to Iraq.
Evening Protest - observing the Fifth Iraq Moratorium, colleagues in SDS, Movement for a Democratic Society (Staten Island chapter) will be flyering and protesting on SI and in NYC (at Whitehall).
Flyering at the Staten Island Ferry Terminal in St. George, S.I. 3 – 7PM In front of Water Edge Cafe inside St. George Ferry Terminal
Flyering at the Staten Island Ferry Terminal in New York City 3 – 7PM In front of the Information Desk inside the SI Ferry Terminal
Vigil at the Staten Island Borough Hall 7 - 8 PM on the steps of Boro Hall, directly across Richmond Ave from the Ferry Terminal. More info: www.mds-nyc.org/pmr/
b. Sunday, January 20, 3-6 PM – MLK Day of Commitment at Judson Memorial Church, 55 Washington Square Park South, NYC
Peace and Justice Songs Led by the Judson Chorus, the Labor Chorus, and The Raging Grannies. Panel on healthcare for all. Ed Daniels, VFP member and Director of the Incarcerated Veterans' Consortium, and Dr. Lucius Walker, Director of Pastors for Peace, will be on the panel.
More information: 212-477-0351; 212-255-5532 or e-mail: email@example.com
c. Monday, January 21, 2PM – Grandmothers for Peace MLK Day event, at Holy Name Church on W. 96 St and Amsterdam Ave.
d. Thursday January 24 from 1-3 PM – Counter-Recruitment event near 125 St Recruiting Station, between Lenox Ave and 5th Avenue, with tabling and literature for High School students.
e. March 15 -19, 2008 - IVAW Winter Soldier Investigation, Washington, DC. Joe Urgo, who helped organize the original VVAW Winter Soldier Investigation, urged all members to attend what promises to be an historic event.
8. Peace Vigils - VFP members currently participate in four ongoing weekly peace vigils at locations throughout NYC:
! Grandmothers for Peace - Vigil for Peace at Rockefeller Center, Fifth Avenue between 49 - 50 St. every Wednesday afternoon from 4:30 - 5:30 PM.
! Women in Black - Silent Peace Vigil at 41 St and Fifth Avenue every Wednesday afternoon 5:30 - 6:30 PM
! VFP/Queens Network for Peace & Justice - 2 Peace Vigils, one at Continental Av & Austin St. in Forest Hills, and one in front of the Flushing Library, Saturday morning from 11AM - 12 Noon
These vigils have been a positive means of educating the public regarding efforts to defund the Iraq war and end the occupation, bring our troops home, and provide information to counter military recruiters, as well as attempt to attract new members.
9. Meeting Schedule – First and Third Thursday of each month, posted on the Calendar at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/vfpnyc034
The next 3 general meetings of NYC Chapter 34 are scheduled for:
! Thursday February 7, 2008 - 7:00 PM at 28 E.35 Street
! Thursday February 21, 2008 - 7:00 PM at 28 E.35 Street
! Thursday March 6, 2008 - 7:00 PM at 28 E.35 Street
The Executive Committee meets twice a month, at 6:00 PM, prior to each general meeting of the chapter. The next Executive Committee meeting will be on Thursday February 7, 2008 at 28 E. 35 St. at 6:00 PM