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Monday, Aug. 8
Past National President Patricia Jackson-Kelley introduced President Laurie Butts at the podium; the pages escorted National Executive Board members to their seats. Butts called the meeting to order at 1:34 p.m. and welcomed attendees. She introduced the national officers in attendance.
Mary Caruso, MINK Area vice president, read the Collect. Rick Hall, Eastern Region vice president, led the Pledge of Allegiance. Roxanne Bradley, Sacramento (CA) Branch 77, sang the national anthem.
Cathy Towns, Mideast Area vice president, gave an inspirational invocation. A memorial service was conducted by Towns and Jane Finley, Southeast Area vice president. They memorialized deceased Auxiliary members Clyde Alexander, MSC Red Bank District (NJ) Branch 568; Marie Carter, former national president and San Antonio Branch 103; Raymond Jones, Richmond (VA) Branch 98; Lorraine Kearney, New Jersey State Branch 933; and Ada Tate, San Francisco Branch 88.
Finley asked for a moment of silence and special remembrance for all the souls of the Auxiliary and NAPS family and friends, as well as those who gave their lives defending and protecting our country. She ended with a fervent prayer. Bradley sang “Wind Beneath My Wings.”
Secretary/Treasurer Bonita Atkins conducted the roll call of officers. In attendance were President Laurie Butts, Executive Vice President Beverly Austin, Eastern Region Vice President Rick Hall, Central Region Vice President Elly Soukey, Southern Region Vice President Felecia Hill and Western Region Vice President and Immediate Past President Patricia Jackson-Kelley.
Also, Mideast Area Vice President Cathy Towns, Capitol-Atlantic Area Vice President Emanuel “Skip” Corley, Illini Area Vice President Linda Rendleman, MINK Area Vice President Mary Caruso, Southeast Area Vice President Jane Finley, Texas Area Vice President Shirley Bradford and Pacific Area Vice President May Nazareno. The Northeast Region and New York, Michiana and Central Gulf areas are vacant.
The chair called on Registration Chair Jo Geter for her committee report: 20 states were represented with 34 votes, which qualified as a quorum. Represented were 20 local branches, eight national officers, six area vice presidents, seven members-at-large, five past national presidents, 77 registered delegates, with 71 delegates in attendance.
Rick Hall, chair of the Rules Committee, read the rules of the convention and reported no additional rules needed to be added. There were no questions or discussion; the rules were adopted. The Rules Committee was discharged.
The chair called Atkins to present the proposed agenda. Atkins moved to dispense from reading the minutes—everyone had a copy—and for adoption of the agenda as printed. The motion was seconded by Rendleman and adopted.
Butts reminded delegates that the Auxiliary voted years ago not to have a professional parliamentarian, but, instead, have former National Auxiliary presidents serve in that capacity. She introduced Sonya Bonenbeger, Delores Bradley and Sue Elliott as parliamentarians for the convention. Butts also introduced Assistant Secretary Chanel Dodson, Los Angeles Branch 39.
Atkins asked that delegates stand when their names were called to be assigned as chairs and members of the various committees. The chair next called Ways and Means Chair Rick Corley.
He said this year there would be two winners for the “Split the Pot” raffle, with six tickets for $20. Corley said members purchasing tickets thus far were in agreement with the format and excited. The winner of the gift card raffle would receive $1,275 worth of different gift cards.
Caruso and Finley were called to give their report on the First-Timers’ orientation. They reported that, some years ago, the Auxiliary and NAPS delegates’ orientations were combined. This year, no Auxiliary first-timers were in attendance. However, in the Auxiliary general session, 13 first-timers introduced themselves and received a rousing round of applause.
Austin gave the first reading of the proposed changes to the National Auxiliary Bylaws. Butts asked for announcements and noted the time for committee photos would be announced later. Door prizes were given; the meeting was recessed until 9 a.m. Tuesday morning.
Tuesday, Aug. 9
Butts called the meeting to order at 9:02 a.m.; Finley gave the invocation.
Butts then introduced the past National Auxiliary presidents in attendance: Sue Elliott, 1994-1996; Mary Caruso, 2000-2002; Sonya Bonenberger, 2006-2008; Delores Bradley, 2008-2010; and Patricia Jackson-Kelley, 2016-2021.
Atkins read correspondence from Butts regarding the death of her immediate family member. (Condolences from Beverly Austin on the death of her immediate family member were unintentionally excluded from being read.)
Caruso, chair of the Minutes Committee, reported the minutes from Monday, Aug. 8, were read and found to be correct. Geter reported on registration: represented were 20 states, 20 local branches, eight national officers, six area vice presidents, seven members-at-large, five past presidents and 77 registered delegates.
The Bylaws Committee, chaired by Austin, had a second reading of the proposed amendments. There was a brief discussion and clarification given regarding proposed amendment #3: Article XII, Representation and Voting, Section 3.a.5, by striking out “at large.” There were no further discussions. The three amendments would be voted on at the third reading.
It was announced that photos would be taken at 1:30 p.m. that afternoon in front of the Empire Ballroom.
After a 10-minute recess, the delegation reassembled; members were introduced to motivational speaker Deborah Johnson, San Francisco Branch 88 vice president. Her topic was “The 12 Elements of Engagement.” She told delegates that “behind each element was a fundamental truth about human nature on the job and in everyday life.” Her presentation was very inspiring and generated interactions with the delegates. The meeting was recessed for lunch until 1:30 p.m.
The meeting resumed at 1:30; photos would be taken at 3:30 p.m. The invocation was given by Towns.
Butts introduced Patty Patterson of Dillard Financial Solutions, Inc. She played a version of “The Price Is Right” with delegates. Shelby Studdard, Birmingham (AL) Branch 45, won round 1 and received a 39-inch LG TV. Austin won round 2 and received a 42-inch LG TV.
These two winners played the final round of “Price Is Right Showcase-Showdown.” Studdard won the round and traded her TV for an Apple watch. It was a lively and entertaining session.
Delegates then were dismissed to take committee photos. The meeting was called back to order shortly thereafter.
Austin called for the third reading of the proposed amendments to the National Auxiliary Bylaws. The first proposed change, Article VIII, Duties of Officers, Section 5.a, was recommended for adoption. There was no discussion; the proposed change was approved unanimously.
The second proposed change, Article XI, Committees, Section 1.d, was recommended for adoption. There was a brief discussion; the proposed change was adopted unanimously.
The third proposed change, Article XII, Representation and Voting, Section 3.a.5, was recommended for adoption. There was a brief discussion and clarification. The proposed change was approved unanimously. The Bylaws Committee was discharged.
Butts called Bonenberger, chair of the Audit Committee, for her report. Bonenberger reported the committee met on Sunday, Aug. 7, and reviewed the books, which were in order. Bonenberger made a motion to adopt the report. The motion passed; the Audit Committee was discharged.
Jackson-Kelley, chair of the Budget Committee, reported the committee met on Sunday, Aug. 7, at 9 a.m. She read the proposed budget. There was discussion regarding increasing the budget; clarification was given by Bonenberger. The motion to adopt was approved. The Budget Committee was discharged.
Butts opened the floor for nomination of officers, starting with president. Patricia Jackson-Kelley nominated Laurie Butts; no other nominations were made.
The floor was opened for executive vice president. Felicia Hill nominated Beverly Austin; no other nominations were made.
The floor was opened for secretary/treasurer. Mary Caruso nominated Bonita Atkins; no other nominations were made.
The floor was opened for Northeast Region vice president; no nominations were made.
The floor was opened for Eastern Region vice president. Emanuel Corley nominated Rick Hal; no other nominations were made.
The floor was opened for Central Region vice president. Linda Rendleman nominated Elly Soukey; no other nominations were made.
The floor was opened for Southern Region vice president. Beverly Austin nominated Felecia Hill; no other nominations were made.
The floor was opened for Western Region vice president. Genaro “Toby” Loera nominated Patricia Jackson-Kelley; no other nominations were made. Nominations were closed.
Butts encouraged everyone to enjoy their free day, Wednesday, in New Orleans and stay safe. Door prizes were given; the meeting was in recess until Thursday at 9 a.m.
Thursday, Aug. 11
The meeting was called to order at 9 a.m. with an invocation by Finley. Minutes Committee Chair Caruso gave her final report and advised that the minutes from Tuesday, Aug. 9, appeared to be correct. Her committee was discharged.
Registration Committee Chair Geter gave her final report: represented were 20 states, 20 local branches, eight executive board members, six area vice president, seven members-at-large, five past presidents and 77 registered delegates. Geter and her committee were discharged.
The election of officers was next on the agenda. Because all nominees ran unopposed, only a voice vote on each nominee was needed. Voice votes were in favor of the nominees for each office; all were unanimously elected.
First-timers were encouraged to give suggestions, recommendations and thoughts on their experiences at the convention. Three of the 13 first-timers shared their thoughts.
Rendleman, chair of the Resolutions Committee, gave her report. The committee recommended giving Dodson a standing ovation for her service as assistant secretary. A standing ovation also was recommended for parliamentarians Sonya Bonenberger, Delores Bradley and Sue Elliott for their shared knowledge and experience.
A standing ovation was recommended for Roxanne Bradley, who sang beautifully at the Auxiliary’s opening ceremony and would later sing at the Auxiliary Luncheon. Next, a standing ovation was recommended for the Ways and Means Committee members who continually worked hard selling raffle tickets and gift cards each convention day to raise money for the Auxiliary. The committee next recommended a standing ovation for Butts for representing the Auxiliary with a professional and positive image.
The committee recommended that thank-you notes be sent to the NAPS Executive Board for their continued support of the Auxiliary and to Deborah Johnson for speaking so eloquently and inspiring members on “The 12 Elements of Engagement.” The committee also recommended that the Auxiliary reinstate the Auxiliary’s first-timer orientation at NAPS national conventions and not be in conflict with the NAPS delegates’ orientation.
Lastly, the committee recommended that Patricia Jackson-Kelley be presented with a lifetime membership to the Auxiliary as she completed her duties as national president. All the committee’s recommendations were approved and adopted. The Resolutions Committee was discharged.
Corley, chair of the Ways and Means Committee, gave his final report. He reported that, on Tuesday, $9,500 was raised; the Auxiliary’s share was $4,750. He mentioned that the committee had raised over $7,000 for the Thursday drawing. The goal was to raise over $10,000. He received a rousing round of applause.
Carolyn Mack, chair of the Timekeeper Committee, reported that the committee tracked time during debates, as requested, for the convention. Her committee was discharged.
Toby Loera, Properties Committee chair, reported the committee prepared the meeting room before the beginning of the sessions and would help with set-up at the Auxiliary Luncheon. His committee would be discharged at the end of the convention.
Soukey, Pages Committee chair, thanked everyone in helping distribute materials and door prizes as assigned. Her committee would be discharged at the end of the convention.
Aletha Brathwaite, chair of the Sergeants-at-Arms Committee, advised that all duties were performed; she introduced her members. Her committee was discharged.
Austin, Luncheon Committee chair, thanked all her members who would be helping with the table decorations needed to be arranged before the luncheon. She asked all her committee members to stand and gave them an ovation. Her members would be discharged at the end of the luncheon.
Butts thanked the parliamentarians, chaplains and Assistant Secretary Dodson for their hard work. Unfinished business included Skip Corley additionally thanking Hazel Green and Jo Geter for their assistance to the Ways and Means Committee.
Atkins apologized for omitting reports from Eastern Region Vice President Rick Hall and Western Region Vice President Patricia Jackson-Kelley in the Biennial Officers’ Report book. Atkins said she would ensure they appear in the 2024 Convention Report Booklet.
Butts encouraged the Auxiliary delegates to attend nominations for the NAPS National Executive Board at 1:30 p.m.; there was no further business for the Auxiliary convention. Door prizes were given and the meeting was recessed until noon on Friday for the Auxiliary Luncheon.
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