Minutes of the 17 April 2008 General Membership Meeting
The Fort Smith Historical Society

The Fort Smith Historical Society had its General Membership Meeting on April 17, 2008, at the River Front Park Events Building, immediately following the presentation of the Frontier Achievement Awards.  One of the FAA recipients was our own board member, Joe Wasson.  He was recognized for the extensive work he has done on the oral history project with veterans.  Congratulations to Joe for a job well done. 

Those attending the meeting were Jerry Akins, Carole and Floyd Barger, Bob Worley, Clara Jane Rubarth, Joe Wasson, Bill and Dorothy  Kirk, Jimmy and Nancy Ciulla, Dan Breitenberg, JP and Becky Chancey, Joanne Swafford, Jerry and Wincie Hendricks, Elvin Frick, Dorothy  Rappeport, Chuck Raney, Billy Higgins,and Chloe Lamon. 

The meeting was called to order by the President, Billy Higgins.  Copies of the minutes of the last meeting were handed out for board members to read.  There were no corrections and a move to accept them as read was made, seconded, and passed unanimously.Nancy Ciulla handed out copies of the treasurer's report.  A motion to accept it as read was made, seconded and passed unanimously. Wincie Hendricks gave out the membership report.  A motion to accept it as read was made, seconded, and passed unanimously.Carole announced that we were winners of four first place awards for 2008 from the Arkansas Historical Association:  Best Local or County Journal, Best Article "Escape to America - 1975 by Melanie Speer Wiggins, Best Autobiography by Orville Bittle, and Best Use of Graphics. There was an award for Susan Keefner, a court reporter in Sallisaw who makes transcripts of our WWII veterans interview DVDs. Billy Higgins was presented a plaque for outstanding leadership as president from 2005-2008. 

Following the meeting of the general membership, the Executive Board met for selection of 2008 -2009 officers. Jerry Hendricks spoke for the membership committee. There are six open board positions, three are for re-election and there are three new vacancies.Nominations for the slate of officers are: President, Clara Jane Rubarth Vice President, Al Whitson, Recording Secretary, Chloe Lamon Corresponding Secretary, Chuck Raney Membership Secretary, Wincie Hendricks Treasurer, Nancy Ciulla.  Nominations from the floor were requested.  There were none.  A motion was made to accept the slate of officers suggested by the membership committee, seconded, and passed unanimously. 

Copies of the proposed amendment to the Constitution and Bylaws were passed around.  There were no changes from article 4 through 8. Duties were not spelled out in the original constitution.  There was a question on expanding, limiting, or defining presidential duties. And, how long are the minutes good for?  We don't have all the minutes on archive. Number 11 could be a separate bank account for the oral history project. The reason for a separate bank account is thate grant money recieved by the society must be accounted for seperatly, The assumption is that the duties of the officers will be the same.  There was a question about the categories of life memberships and making changes in the categories. A motion to accept the amendment to the Constitution and by-laws was made, seconded, and passed unanimously. 

Outgoing President, Billy Higgins, presented our new President, Clara Jane Rubarth. She said she is pleased to be the new president and looks forward to serving with much enthusiasm. She plans to keep doing the same things the society has done in the past, is excited to be involved, and thanked the workers for the great job they have done on the journal and oral history project.  She welcomes input from board members.  She would like for the executive committee to meet on the second Wednesday of every month at 5:00 PM at the library. Others not on the executive board would be welcome to bring up topics. 

Joe talked of interviews with 12 of the oldest nuns at St Scholastica.One of them was at St. Scholastica in 1925. He said he will document more about the building and grounds.  He has never been more excited.  There was a thank you note from Mrs. Shermer, thanking the FSHS for the interview with Doctor Shermer. 

There being no further business, the meeting was adjuourned by the  President, Clara Jane Rubarth. 

 Chloe Lamon, Recording Secretary