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Board Blurb: June 2024

Updated: Jun 17


Prepared by Gretchen Hesli (2024 RCMG Secretary)

Summary for the June RCMG Board of Directors Meeting

The RCMG Board Meeting was held on June 11, 2024 on Zoom. The next Board Meeting is scheduled for July 9, 2024, our semi-annual Board Retreat.


Committee Updates

Communications Committee Update

In addition to ongoing activities, the committee is interviewing interns who may be interested in joining Marcom and assist with their many projects. — Nanette Boudreau

Education Committee Update

Speakers and programs are secured for all 2024 monthly meetings. Garden Gate visits begin in June with twelve members hosting. The team is working with Tangletown Farms with the hope to arrange a visit to their Plato location in August. Stay tuned! — Simba Blood

Finance Committee Update

The U of M RCMG Foundation holds a significant endowment dedicated to the Children’s Gardening Program at the Aurora-St. Anthony Peace Sanctuary Garden. The Board and Darren are interested to see if some of these funds could be redirected to other programs for children, of which we have many. The RCMG volunteer project leader will be asked for input prior to approaching the anonymous donor. — Laura Savin

Membership Committee Update

Interns continue to progress through the Core Course and accrue both volunteer and education hours, though there are several who have made no progress. Time to get back on track!!! — Karen Randall

Plant Sale Committee Update

Cheryl updated the Board on the results of the Plant Sale. With the help of a talented and hard-working committee and the contributions of so many volunteers, it was a smashing success! Over 200 shoppers were waiting for the door to open, almost 1,300 people attended, and over 7,500 plants were sold, netting our organization over $18,000! Plans are already underway for the 2025 sale, to be held once again at the Aldrich Ice Arena. Congratulations Cheryl and team!!! — Cheryl Brady


Leadership Updates

Secretary Update

The April Board Minutes were approved.

Treasurer Update

Kathy presented the April and May Treasurer’s Reports, both of which were approved.

Program Coordinator Update

No report from Program Coordinator Darren Lochner.

Chair and Vice-Chair Report

Vice-Chair Report

No report from Vice-Chair Kay Wimer.

Chair Report

Julie continues to work on recruiting candidates for Vice Chair, Treasurer, Secretary, and various Committee Co-Chairs. If you have interest in serving on the Board please contact Julie or Kay.


Old Business

Team Hollyhock’s Dunning Park Pollinator Project update - Karen Randall

A project proposal was submitted in May (outside of our regular Board Meeting) by the Hollyhock intern/mentor team for the installation of a pollinator lawn at Dunning Park (south of the ARTS-Us garden on Marshall Avenue). Darren approved the project and the Board voted to support it financially, with most of the cost covered by the Capitol Region Watershed District. Ground prep and seeding will take place this Fall. Signage will be included. The project will provide an educational public site for those wondering “what is a bee lawn?” and “how do I grow one?”

2023 Financial Audit & Review recommendations update - Kathy Passe and Julie Bechtold

The Audit Committee has recommended the purchase and use of accounting software (such as QuickBooks) for the past two years. Our treasurer is comfortable using an Excel spreadsheet. The software has a lot of extra features that she would not use and would involve a yearly subscription expense. The Board will revisit this when we transition to the next Treasurer at the end of 2024.

Board of Directors July Retreat - Julie Bechtold

The Board will meet on July 9th for a semi-annual retreat, to be held at the Ramsey-Washington Metro Watershed District headquarters. The focus will be largely on strategic planning for the RCMG non-profit corporation.

Recording of Board Meetings and Storage - Julie Bechtold

A decision was made to take over the recording and storage of Board Meetings, currently handled by Darren. We now have a Google Workspace for Nonprofits account, which is free but doesn’t allow recording. Alternatively we could purchase several Zoom business accounts. The Board will continue to research options and costs. Recordings allow for reviewing actions taken in the meeting (helping out this Secretary!) and provide transparency. They will be stored for a year.

RCMG Nonprofit Corporation’s Strategic Planning update - Karen Randall,

A leadership team consisting of Julie Bechtold, Kay Wimer, Karen Randall, and Gene Ranieri (with several additional volunteers) has been formed to work on our RCMG non-profit Strategic Plan for 2025 – 2028. The goal is to have the final draft presented to members and adopted by the end of the year.


2024 Board Leadership: Julie Bechtold (Chair), Kay Wimer (Vice-Chair), Gretchen Hesli (Secretary), Kathy Passe, (Treasurer), Simba Blood (Education Chair), Gene Ranieri (Education Co-Chair), Karen Randall (Membership Chair), Tiffa Foster (Membership Co-Chair), Nanette Boudreau (Communication Chair), Stacy Sola (Communication Co-Chair), Darren Lochner (Program Coordinator).


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