General Membership Meeting, 2011

The AHF General Membership Meeting  is now Closed

I would like to start this meeting by welcoming all our new members to the AHF. We have many exciting projects planned for the AHF in the coming year.

This year’s major project has been the release of the AHF’s new website. I really like the simple yet elegant template it is designed around. Many thanks to Kim Moser, William Elder, Keena Suh, Jeannette Acosta-Martinez and Ben Miller for their tireless work on the past website and the content creation of our new and improved website. The current version of the site was created this summer by Stephanie Zimmerman who is our current webmaster. The site is built on a content management system which features an extended membership module, allowing for future growth and outreach opportunities for AHF members.

We have set up discussion boards for various meetings, committees and projects to discuss regular business. Discussions are currently managed by blog subject and post-comment threads. These are hierarchical, which means you can respond to a specific comment by clicking Reply under the comment itself (like this year’s official report), or you can reply to the overall post (or meeting in our case) by immediately typing in the comment field at the bottom of the meeting post.

The site contains a good bit of excellent information along with various articles and transcriptions of earlier fencing material. We should be posting additional articles, transcriptions and translations soon, as they are completed.

We have a busy year ahead of us and I look forward to working with everyone on growing the AHF in future years.

Next, the official report.

Cecil Longino
AHF President

11 Comments

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11 Responses to General Membership Meeting, 2011

  1. Cecil Longino

    Official Report
    The website project was successfully completed earlier this year! This project has consumed a great amount of time and resources but now we can redirect some of those efforts to additional projects. Our new website is already showing positive results. The AHF has been receiving new members as a direct result of the website’s launch.

    The AHF has managed to accomplish a number of excellent things in its past: Rule sets for classical and historical fencing tournaments, professional level fencing judges training, assisting other organizations with historical education and hosting various lectures on historical topics. I feel, the best is yet to come and the AHF is only beginning to really grow into its full potential. 

    We have 4 annually recurring events:
    Classical Foil Open Tournament (Jupiter, FL ), Classical Foil Invitational Tournament (SUNY Purchase College in New York,), Redwood Coast Assault of Arms (Humboldt State University in California), and The Grand Assault of Arms in New York. These events expose the general public to classical fencing through a traditional tournament format and fencing demonstrations, particularly with the Grand Assault in NY. November 2012 will be the 10 year anniversary of the Grand Assault of Arms and I would strongly encourage all our members to attend. The projects committee has set their collective minds to making it the grandest Grand Assault yet. 

    Should any members who were able to attend these events this year care to share your experiences, please do.

    The official AHF tournament rules are being continually revised by the Rules Committee and they are looking at expanding the rule set to cover additional weapons such as cane and bayonet. 

    At this point I would like to draw everyones attention to the various committees contained within the AHF, they are the work horses of the organization and are often looking for good people to join and offer new ideas and hands to complete various goals. 

    Project Development Committee
    The Project Development Committee works on the creation and implementation of projects that fulfill the AHF’s mission to educate. Research, workshops, the AHF library, video archive, website content development, and exhibitions are just some of the undertakings discussed. It is the largest committee comprised of sub-committees as needed.

    Rules Committee
    The Competitive Rules Committee is chaired by the First Vice-President and consists of six additional members, at least four of whom must be professional members. It the duty of this committee to formulate and interpret the rules for tournaments sponsored by this organization.

    Sponsorship committee
    It is the duty of this committee to find and maintain sponsorship for the activities and competitions of the organization.

    • Jeannette Acosta-Martinez

      The project development committee will be working on a new tournament structure for the 10th anniversary of the Grand Assault. We are planning to make changes to the preliminaries and also to the public portion of the event.

      The event will be expanded to three days. We will be adding two more weapons (stick and bayonet). We are also considering including an Instructors tournament. While we are roughly a year away, we need to have the event organized by February so we can begin advertizing and promoting it. If you have participated in the past and have any ideas or suggested please let us know.

      Thank you

    • David M. Cvet

      Firstly, I tip my hat to those involved with the new website, its design, implementation and continued administration and maintenance. I appreciate the work involved, and wish the best for your webmaster, Stephanie Zimmerman. She and I have had some correspondence over the years.

      Secondly, I haven’t forgotten the Virtual Exhibit project. As I indicated, I shall approach the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto to determine their level of interest. I apologize for not getting on it sooner as I’ve been out of the country, and been busier than a banshee these days.

      I don’t have anything else to contribute at this time, but do keep monitoring the progress of the AHF and wish it greater success in 2012.

      Regards,
      David

      • Stephanie Zimmerman

        David,

        Excellent, can’t wait to here how your interactions with the Royal Ontario Museum goes. Glad to have you on board.

  2. Cecil Longino

    I would like to take a moment and introduce the nine current members on the AHF Board of Governors. The four general members are:
    Jeannette Acosta-Martinez
    Ramon Martinez
    David Cvet
    Jeff Richardson

    The five executive officers are:
    Michael Su, Treasurer
    Christine Martine, Secretary
    Fawzi Al-Nawal, 2nd Vice President
    Antone Blair, Vice President
    Cecil Longino (me), President

    Now that I have pointed out our Board of Governors, allow me to remind you that their term of office expires mid next year and we will be holding another round of elections. So, start thinking about nominations…

    • David M. Cvet

      May I suggest that the terms of office be staggered, such that there are positions 1-year in length, another position 2-years and another 3-years. This would aid in establishing some continuity in the Board. It may be possible that the entire Board could be nothing but new people at some given point, and they may not have the experience to carry out their respective duties with respect to the AHF.

      Also, if I may, the bylaws do not mention voting by those members entitled to vote via proxy. However, if the voting is online, then this may be moot.

      And finally, bylaws have a bad habit of becoming bloated and complicated. In general, bylaws should be simple enough that it wouldn’t need much changes over time. The actual operating characteristics of the organization would be documented in a policies & procedures guide. These would be approved and accepted by the Board of Governors, and may simplify the administering of the organization.

      • Stephanie Zimmerman

        I concure.

        The one benefit the AHF has to so many other organizations out there, is that its founding members created a 501(c)(3) non-profit. There are a lot of projects that can be done with that status, that cannot be achieved or funded with other types of loose organizations of enthusiasts. However, retaining that status requires some internal knowledge, and thus it will be critical to having elected positions that overlap in terms so that the training on the non-profit legalease is passed on.

        • Stephanie Zimmerman

          Also, one possible structural item to consider during re-elections and bylaw changes:

          Why does a small organization like the AHF have 9 elected board members, while a lot of the work has to be farmed out to volunteers? Should we have fewer board members in the future, specify each position’s purpose better, or a combination of the two?

  3. Cecil Longino

    The final points I would like to address in the official report are as follows:

    The board has been working on stream lining a number of our processes, which includes the delivery of membership cards to AHF members. So, if you have not received your membership cards yet, those should be going out in December.

    Also, early next year, I will be calling a special general meeting so we can vote on several proposed changes to the AHF bylaws. The purpose of these proposals will be to facilitate the smooth functioning of our organization.

    This concludes the official report. Should you have any specific questions for me or the other officers, please let us know.

    I promise to help grow the AHF, with your help, and use your talents as much or as little as you are willing to contribute to that growth.

    Cecil Longino
    AHF President

  4. Antone Blair

    Dear Members,

    Since the President has been so thorough, I will merely second his comments and add my excitement at the approach of the 10th Anniversary of the AHF Grand Assault; I fully expect that this will be the best Grand Assault so far. And while a great deal of work has been done to keep the AHF moving forward, as the President has mentioned above, there remains a great deal to do. As such I strongly second the call for input, ideas and suggestions from the membership as we work to develop and revise the rules and bylaws for future AHF endeavors; the AHF exists to serve you, the membership, and while I will be working with several committees to make these changes, we do need to hear from the general membership as well. I look forward to working with the many fine members who continue to contribute so much to our organization.

    Antone Blair
    AHF Vice President