Minutes of the January 26, 2015 General Membership Meeting

Democratic Club of Claremont
General Membership Meeting
7:00PM Monday, January 26, 2015
Porter Hall, Pilgrim Place

Welcome and Attendance: Gar Byrum, Chair, welcomed approximately 40 members and guests. Steven and Candy Gunski were introduced.

MSA (Sandy Hester) The Agenda was approved with the following:

Addition of location of the UNA annual meeting to be at Decker Hall, Pilgrim Place.

PROGRAM: Merrill Ring introduced Char Miller, W.M. Keck Professor of Environmental Analysis, Pomona College. Miller's presentation, "Some Say the World Will End in Fire: Planetary Health and the Anthropocene", included many of the ways in which human activities have had a significant global impact on the Earth's ecosystems and possible actions to take in response to them. The talk and visuals focused on several key areas of forests, water and energy and the rise of new strategies and tactics designed to insure a more resilient future. Beginning by defining "anthropocene" as human altering of the planet, Professor Miller described the interactions between humans and ecosystems and resulting changes that are happening and will continue to occur. His focus on our Mediterranean ecosystem, the Colorado River system, the Los Angeles River watershed and our use of electricity, gas and oil related directly to those of us in attendance. He also discussed glacier retreat, the rising "sea level" and the Edwards Aquifer in Texas. He offered suggestions on how each of us can act locally by restoring native habitats, reducing and replacing our energy use and divesting our ownership in utilities.


MSA (Carolee Monroe) The Minutes of the General Membership meeting (11/24/14)


MSA (Joe Salas) The motion to confirm the slate of nominees presented by the Nominations Committee passed unanimously. Mel Boynton, Chair of the Nominations Committee, first acknowledged committee members Gene Boutilier, Debi Evans and Gar Byrum. Mel then called on those candidates whose names were first presented during the November meeting: John Forney, President; Carolee Monroe, Recording Secretary; Brenda Lewis, Corresponding Secretary; Carol Whitson, Treasurer; Merrill Ring, First Vice President-Program and Issues; and Sandy Hester, Second Vice President-Membership. Mel then thanked Gar Byrum for his service as President.

Because John Forney was not in attendance, Merrill Ring assumed leadership of the meeting, in compliance with the By-Laws.


Finance: Carol Whitson will prepare a proposed budget for the next Executive Board meeting.

Program & Issues: Merrill Ring spoke of the speakers and their topics for February. (Information is listed below under "ANNOUNCEMENTS".) Merrill also announced that the Issues Committee meets weekly at Rabi's Cafe, Central Avenue, Upland for lunch.

Communications: Brenda Lewis, newly elected Corresponding Secretary, will assume Chairmanship of the committee.

Membership: Sandy Hester, Chair, presented a report enumerating 9 Life Memberships, 37 Renewals and 17 New Members, for a total of 63 paid memberships for 2015. Help is needed to contact 202 individuals who need to be reminded to renew their membership. Members are encouraged to join the Membership Committee.

Political Strategy: Debi Evans, Chair, reported that the ADEM election resulted in Anthony Portantino's slate being elected, with Gar Byrum as one. Assemblyman Chris Holden is seeking nominees for "Small Businessman of the Year" with applications to be submitted by March 4. Two of our DCC members have been given positions by Congressman Pete Aguilar: Curt Lewis is now a Field Representative for the 31st CD while Debi Evans has been appointed to the California Democratic Party State Central Committee.

Matt Lyons for La Verne City Council - Matt Lyons addressed the membership, he asked for support for his campaign after stating his qualifications.

Report of LACDP/CDP: Bob Gerecke reported that the major action of the LACDP, during its' last meeting, was to endorse candidates; it chose to endorse Matt Lyons. It passed two resolutions:

  1. Support of city elections being held along with federal elections and
  2. Support those states with an initiative process to work for anti-gerrymandering legislation.

MSA (Gar Byrum) Endorsement of Anthony Portantino: The motion to endorse Mr. Portantino for State Senate District 25 in the 2016 election was approved with one vote in opposition and five abstentions.

MSA (Joe Salas) Honorary Membership given to Karen Wingard: The motion, unanimously approved, designates our Regional Director for this area as an Honorary Member.

MSA (Andy Winnick) Letter re. Fracking: The motion to send the letter, to be signed by Gar Byrum and the then-current DCC President, was approved unanimously. Merrill Ring had first read aloud the letter urging Assemblyman Holden to initiate a bill calling for a moratorium on fracking in California. Copies will be sent to Assemblyman Holden, State Senators Carol Liu and Connie Leyva, Governor Jerry Brown and State Senate candidate Anthony Portantino.


DCC Events

  • Friday, February 13, Democratic Club of Claremont luncheon Noon Darvish Restaurant, 946 W. Foothill Blvd., Claremont Angela Sanbrano to speak about Latin American issues, including Immigration and Cuba
  • Monday, February 23, Democratic Club of Claremont General Membership meeting 7:00 PM Porter Hall, Pilgrim Place Amanda Hollis-Brusky will speak on the Supreme Court: what to expect from it in the next two years

Other Events

  • ONGOING: Matt Lyons for La Verne City Council. Contact: areyes8989@gmail.com or (909) 518 8989
  • Sunday, February 1, Pomona Valley Chapter of UNA-USA, Annual Meeting/Pot Luck 5:00 PM Decker Hall, Pilgrim Place, Congresswoman Judy Chu will be honored as an "Environmental Champion" Everyone is invited, please bring a dish to share.
  • Tuesday, February 17 UNA-USA Pomona Valley Chapter meeting 5:30 PM Porter Hall, Pilgrim Place Char Miller will speak on "Water Management and the UN Goal of Securing Sustainable Water for All" Site of meeting - on the Claremont Colleges campus.
  • Saturday, February 21, NAACP Series: Dialog Re. Police/Race Relations 3:00 PM Kennedy Austin Foundation, 2501 N Garey Avenue, Pomona
  • Sunday, February 22, Progressive Christians Uniting Agenda for a Prophetic Faith Series 7:00 PM, Claremont United Methodist Church Ed Bacon, Pastor, All Saints Episcopal Church, Pasadena, "A Prophetic Call from a Church on the Front Lines"
  • Tuesday, March 3 and Tuesday March 31 The American Institute for Progressive Democracy's Two-part series on Economic
    Inequality in America Rose Hills Theater, 170 E. 6th Street, Claremont

Adjourn: The meeting was adjourned at 9:10 PM.

Respectfully submitted,

Carolee Monroe, Recording Secretary