OSI(US) Board meeting 5-27-04

Present: Kerry Napuk, Gabriel Shirley, Peggy Holman, Mikk Sarv, John Engle, Michael Herman, Lisa Heft (recording secretary for this meeting). Absent: Leon deKing

Helping Janet Pinto and OSonOS in Goa by enabling credit card payments for OSonOS registration fees through OSI(US)’s site


Lisa gave the update that Mary Ella Keblusek will be US-based Registrar so she can handle US-based credit card approval and processing


Janet will contact her; Lisa will contact Michael when Janet does so to set up the technical side and will refer Mary Ella to Peggy for the information she needs for credit card processing.

OSI(US) relationship with Access Queen


John sent out to the Board the draft Letter of Understanding for AQ which he and Lisa developed (after this Board meeting Lisa updated it with the roles for Lisa and Peggy in authorizing credit cards and communicating with each other ongoing status on who is contributing what amounts); this could also be a template letter for any future folks proposing projects for support. John is passing it through his attorney friend; Board approves pending this and agrees to consider it approved if the lawyer does not ‘raise any red flags’.


As soon as John indicates it is fine with the lawyer, Lisa will contact Michael regarding activating a payment link on the osworld site and announce that to the OSLIST.

OSI(US) membership drive raffle


We raised $1675 through this year’s membership ‘ask’, which is a bit on the low side. Peggy doesn’t guess that the raffle idea brought in additional funds (for example note that 2/3 of this amount raised was Gail West’s single $1000 contribution). That’s the current state of fundraising. As for raffle entries, which Peggy numbered consecutively (each $25 of someone’s contribution gives a ‘raffle ticket’) Peggy went to random.org got us a true random number: 40. And the winner is: Gail West of Taiwan!!


Kerry will contact her to arrange to give her the copy of his and Eddie’s book as well as her free consultation from the Board. Kerry will announce this on OSLIST to congratulate Gail and generate more enthusiasm re: donating to OSI/US.

Doug’s interest in promoting OS use in the US


Doug sent a brief description of what he had in mind to promote the use of OS in the United States – having OSI Board announce a challenge to nonprofit groups to do OS – ask OSI for out-of-pocket expenses, small grants like $100 (there is $750 in the ‘pot’ donated by Doug for this) or matching up to $100; limited to groups who have not yet experienced OS. Kerry: what about being able to send a ‘kit’ to organizations: Harrison’s User’s Guide plus facilitators in their area, so they know where to get some support? Kerry would love to see folks get some professional input before they do their first event – promoting a certain level of standards. Peggy: got the idea the invitation was to be put out to OS practitioners…? Doug: not necessarily where it has to go – that community already knows about it. Wouldn’t have to be limited to the OS community. Likes the idea of the kit; concept that there are people to help. Doug did his own first one with phone call support from Michael. Lisa: in her experience with very low income NGOs the thing stopping OS is not always about money being prohibitive; many agreed is more about a desire before first OSs for mentorship and support. ‘Open Space Corps’ comes to mind. Appreciative Inquiry community has Positive Change Corp – monthly conference calls with people doing AI in schools. Lisa: how about sending a book, a $20 phone card and list of facilitators in your area? Peggy: do we know enough to know if those indeed would be helpful starters? Kerry: reaching out could also happen to organizations that COULD afford it – so this is a marketing puzzle: how to reach out to potential new sponsors and new users, and how do you make it happen with them? Agreement.

What does that look like? Conference call model? Website? National call number? John: Could envision this linking with the ‘Space Corps’ too – people can call and contact someone who has signed up as part of the Corps and who is available to work with these types of orgs (vol or pay). Peggy: informal grassroots network/word of mouth might be the best way in.

Michael – rather than vocabulary of ‘customer’ – rather, an invitation – all are being served – but can this not start as a conversation among practitioners who could invite anyone in schools or other sorts of community organizations to join this conversation (monthly conference call, wiki, quarterly online gathering or other setting)? Isn’t it just a conversation about how do we do more of this here? (versus identifying and promoting?) and we should all just have a large, ongoing conversation with anyone who cares to join?

Kerry: I would love us to have more conversations on this before we launch it to clarify it a bit – think a bit how best to deal with Doug’s proposition. Michael: are we promoting a process (OST) or are we promoting the invitation to join a conversation? Those are two very different things. Lisa: as an NGO, why would I join another conversation about OST? Either I talk with my local OS facilitator (because I found them, and maybe we can make it easier to find them) or jump on OSLIST… Gabriel: How are we furthering understanding of and access to use of OST? how are we going into places that are not already doing OS? Key question for me is not ‘are you interested in OST’ but more general questions: are you having xyz issues and problems, do you need a better way to make decisions together, etc.

Kerry and Gabriel: recommend our discussing this further so we can put out a clear vision. Kerry sees ‘Space Corp’ being possible after we clarify how we reach out to people. Thinks it’s a process of awareness, understanding and presenting this tool for people to use.

Michael: when I ask why don’t I do more coaching of organizations? I don’t have the energy to send out word to various conferences and organizations that OS exists and it might help. I could do more if I felt more directly supported by a focused group in my (US) region, a few of us talking monthly about some specific events we could recommend OS for, I could invite some folks from orgs to join this conversation, as well. Michael likes the idea of continuing to develop US focus as a purpose, US community – such as German OS community. Peggy: Out of one of those conversations if there’s some funding that could be helpful, then OSI is a potential source that can help.

Kerry: ‘One World, One Corp’ – I think this distinction between 1st world and 3rd world and for-profit and non-profit – maybe that is self defeating – should think of it all as one.

Doug: maybe a question to the OSLIST – how can we promote OS to people who have never heard of it before? How to connect those people to the people who can help them? Ask for ideas, examples.


Peggy will link Doug with AI community’s Positive Change Corps originator to ask how was the original identification process for ‘customer’(user) - awareness / outreach begun for their model. Doug will take this question to the list and see what kind of response he gets to it, which will give us some insight to see what follow-up, if any, makes sense.

Partial Financial support for 10 Haitian regional OSonOS (June) participants==== Discussion: ====

Peggy: This is a ‘no-brainer’ that we should support it. If all the people involved are literate, can each of them write a statement why it’s important, what they hope to get out of it, what they envision as the experience? Seems as if their naming intentions and aspirations would make it a stronger experience from them. Is that a reasonable thing to ask of them? John: agrees with this rationale, and in addition that they are invited to share stories afterwards with others in Haiti. Amount is $300 for 10 people. All agree and approve.


John will work with Peggy on logistics re: getting money to them and getting their thoughts / intentions back to us.

Michael’s request for funding for OST training and conference in Katmandu, Nepal


Michael has been watching economics, oil prices, his own energy, political climate, air fares – it is not clear that this can happen at all; he is glad to come back to this item for the June meeting.


Kept in “Bin” for discussion in future meetings

Donating 1st edition PoP? books (to prisons?)


Peggy: has an address to send PoP? to prison library project. Any other ideas? Is that a good use? Michael: are they interested in the topic or just in having more books? Kerry: we’re facilitating an Edinburgh Practice of Peace event next March. Would this be ather possible point of distribution? Peg: buying the new edition would seem to be best for that particular audience. Michael: high school libraries? Lisa: maybe give 10 to a library; but they would sit so quietly on the shelves; would rather see it paired with active learning and events. Michael: make them available to OSLIST for the asking with the idea that they are to be given to organizations considering this. Kerry: make it part of the kit. Doug: what about libraries in/and colleges which are specifically peace institutes?


Lisa: propose we send 10 to the prison and talk about this more in our future meetings. All agreed, though Peggy may send 25 to the prison project.


==== In the “Bin” (for discussion in our next meetings):====

1) (Michael) Request for funding for OST training and conference in Katmandu, Nepal

2) (Peggy) Donating 1st edition PoP? books

3) (Michael) Putting OSI(US) Board minutes on Wiki as "Showcase of OSI(US) Board Practice".

4) (Kerry) search page.

5) (Michael) A U.S. National OSonOS.

6) (Kerry) What about a worldwide Open Space "Space Corps" (like the U.S. Peace Corps).

7) (Peg) How to handle OSI(US) income earned from provision of fiduciary responsibilities [See 4-22-04 Proceedings items B, C, and D .]