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SSA: Good Guys & Bad Guys



 
 
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  #1  
Old October 4th 06, 03:58 PM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
[email protected]
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Posts: 48
Default SSA: Good Guys & Bad Guys

5-BG wrote (in another thread):

1. It seems as if Chip is back in the fold after going public with his concerns
re board actions. We have yet to be told of his complaints to the board and
what actions they took to satisfy his concerns. This seems to me to be of
legitimate concern to members.


I really don't want to get into another exchange on this subject but I
can't let this one go by.

The world is not neatly divided into good guys and bad guys or into
"outsiders" and "insiders" (translation: you're either for me or
against me). The Board--and even ExComm--represents a diversity of
opinions and positions as does the SSA membership at large. I don't
consider myself to be an insider or an outsider, though I've been
branded as both. I like to think I ask real questions, draw conclusions
based on the facts, ignore the noise (except in cases like this), and
work within the system, including "going public" when it's warranted. I
generally trust my elected representatives to do the right thing so
long as they don't give me any reason not to. But I also insist on
certain checks and balances to make sure I'm not totally reliant on
trust. That's why my concerns have centered on oversight.

This past weekend ExComm recommended and the Board approved a committee
to monitor ExComm and the Emergency Business Plan Task Force. I am
disappointed that this provoked extended debate at the Board meeting
and that the decision was not unanimous [hint: ask your director how
he/she voted, and why] but the majority agreed it was necessary and now
it's time to move on. Richard Kellerman and (shockingly, given my
postings here last week) I were asked to select the members of this
committee, a task upon which we are already embarked.

This gives me the long-overdue opportunity to note that Richard
Kellerman is one of the two "concerned directors" I've been referring
to for some time. Chip Garner is the other one. These two guys deserve
the members' thanks for leading the charge from the "inside" for
oversight of ExComm's actions in handling the financial disaster SSA
has been dealt. My role was easy: I got to sit "outside" and post
critical comments. Richard and Chip G. worked with their fellow board
members (including others who solidly supported us) to make this
committee a reality, and also did a huge amount of work finding and
vetting proposed members of it. When, as we all hope, a new, more
viable SSA emerges from the smoke, they will deserve credit just as I
hope ExComm members do for the work they have been doing.

5-BG, you may be surprised to learn that I have referred to you often
with "insiders" in the past few weeks as one of the only ones on RAS
who seemed to "get it" regarding the conflict of interest question,
though I deplored your belligerent and hyperbolic style (which
diminishes, if not negates, your effectiveness). Now you have made me
feel foolish, however, with your wild accusations of "personal
aggrandizement," financial mismanagement, deception, etc. It's
important to note that most of the "revelations" noted recently came
from minutes of the ExComm meetings that were posted on the SSA Web
site. That few members (including you) bothered to read them until
recently says more about us than "them." Please also note that SSA
members sat in on the Board meeting on Saturday, as they are always
invited to. With the exception of Executive Session (genuinely
necessary in some cases), these meetings are open to all. I understand
at least one member sat in on the ExComm meeting the day before, as
well.

Life ain't perfect. ExComm could have handled the oversight issue
better (though at least some members were solidly behind the concept
all along). Directors ought to know enough to immediately see the
potential conflicts of interest and take action to mitigate them. But
democracy isn't perfect, either. And at the end of the day, the process
worked! And I'm confident that nearly all of the actions taken by
ExComm in the past 60+ days since this crisis arose will stand the test
of time. Changes in organization, roles/responsibilities, reporting
relationships, and financial controls that should have been made before
will be made. And out of this will come a stronger SSA that is better
able to meet our needs in the future.

I encourage SSA members to join me in offering the Board and ExComm our
strong support. I also encourage you to continue to let them know what
you think, both with direct contacts AND with [very important!] polite,
civil postings on this forum. Ill-mannered and irresponsible behavior
on RAS--from both sides--obscures the fact that there are some good
thoughts among the noise, and also that many more SSA members read RAS
than actually contribute to it.

Chip Bearden

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  #2  
Old October 5th 06, 04:11 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Brian Glick
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 40
Default Good Guys & Bad Guys

Chip

Well said, and basically what I have been saying all along. I am not as well
informed as you are on some of the issues, but I am not "somewhere out
there" either. I was just as disturbed at what I read and learned, but it
was still never a time for wild accusations, innuendo and baseless rumor
mongering. I have faith in what is being done to correct all of this, and
who we have doing it. I, like you, am fully behind this action, but want to
keep a close eye on it as well.

Brian Glick

wrote in message
ups.com...
5-BG wrote (in another thread):

1. It seems as if Chip is back in the fold after going public with his
concerns
re board actions. We have yet to be told of his complaints to the board
and
what actions they took to satisfy his concerns. This seems to me to be of
legitimate concern to members.


I really don't want to get into another exchange on this subject but I
can't let this one go by.

The world is not neatly divided into good guys and bad guys or into
"outsiders" and "insiders" (translation: you're either for me or
against me). The Board--and even ExComm--represents a diversity of
opinions and positions as does the SSA membership at large. I don't
consider myself to be an insider or an outsider, though I've been
branded as both. I like to think I ask real questions, draw conclusions
based on the facts, ignore the noise (except in cases like this), and
work within the system, including "going public" when it's warranted. I
generally trust my elected representatives to do the right thing so
long as they don't give me any reason not to. But I also insist on
certain checks and balances to make sure I'm not totally reliant on
trust. That's why my concerns have centered on oversight.

This past weekend ExComm recommended and the Board approved a committee
to monitor ExComm and the Emergency Business Plan Task Force. I am
disappointed that this provoked extended debate at the Board meeting
and that the decision was not unanimous [hint: ask your director how
he/she voted, and why] but the majority agreed it was necessary and now
it's time to move on. Richard Kellerman and (shockingly, given my
postings here last week) I were asked to select the members of this
committee, a task upon which we are already embarked.

This gives me the long-overdue opportunity to note that Richard
Kellerman is one of the two "concerned directors" I've been referring
to for some time. Chip Garner is the other one. These two guys deserve
the members' thanks for leading the charge from the "inside" for
oversight of ExComm's actions in handling the financial disaster SSA
has been dealt. My role was easy: I got to sit "outside" and post
critical comments. Richard and Chip G. worked with their fellow board
members (including others who solidly supported us) to make this
committee a reality, and also did a huge amount of work finding and
vetting proposed members of it. When, as we all hope, a new, more
viable SSA emerges from the smoke, they will deserve credit just as I
hope ExComm members do for the work they have been doing.

5-BG, you may be surprised to learn that I have referred to you often
with "insiders" in the past few weeks as one of the only ones on RAS
who seemed to "get it" regarding the conflict of interest question,
though I deplored your belligerent and hyperbolic style (which
diminishes, if not negates, your effectiveness). Now you have made me
feel foolish, however, with your wild accusations of "personal
aggrandizement," financial mismanagement, deception, etc. It's
important to note that most of the "revelations" noted recently came
from minutes of the ExComm meetings that were posted on the SSA Web
site. That few members (including you) bothered to read them until
recently says more about us than "them." Please also note that SSA
members sat in on the Board meeting on Saturday, as they are always
invited to. With the exception of Executive Session (genuinely
necessary in some cases), these meetings are open to all. I understand
at least one member sat in on the ExComm meeting the day before, as
well.

Life ain't perfect. ExComm could have handled the oversight issue
better (though at least some members were solidly behind the concept
all along). Directors ought to know enough to immediately see the
potential conflicts of interest and take action to mitigate them. But
democracy isn't perfect, either. And at the end of the day, the process
worked! And I'm confident that nearly all of the actions taken by
ExComm in the past 60+ days since this crisis arose will stand the test
of time. Changes in organization, roles/responsibilities, reporting
relationships, and financial controls that should have been made before
will be made. And out of this will come a stronger SSA that is better
able to meet our needs in the future.

I encourage SSA members to join me in offering the Board and ExComm our
strong support. I also encourage you to continue to let them know what
you think, both with direct contacts AND with [very important!] polite,
civil postings on this forum. Ill-mannered and irresponsible behavior
on RAS--from both sides--obscures the fact that there are some good
thoughts among the noise, and also that many more SSA members read RAS
than actually contribute to it.

Chip Bearden



 




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