Board of Directors Conference Call September 15, 2003


Call to Order

The meeting was called to order at 1:04 p.m. (EDT) on Monday, September 15, 2003, by President Ann Turnbull.


Members present—Ann Turnbull, president; David Coulter, president-elect; Valerie Bradley, vice president; Joanna Pierson, secretary/treasurer; Ruth Luckasson, past president; William Gaventa; Sharon Gomez; Robert Horner; Suzie Lassiter; Wendy Nehring; Genevieve Pugh; David Rotholz; Timothy Shriver; Frances Ulrich; Patricia Williams. Members absent—Sharon Coutryer, Amy Hewitt, Yves Lachapelle, Neil Ross. National staff present—M. Doreen Croser, Ana Montoulieu.

Acceptance of Minutes

J. Pierson presented the minutes.

M/S/P (F. Ulrich, S. Gomez): To accept the July 21, 2003, Board of Directors conference call minutes.

M/S/P (S. Lassiter, D. Rotholz): To accept the August 18, 2003, Executive Committee conference call minutes.



J. Pierson explained that there is no significant change in the financial projections. A cash flow analysis now accompanies the financial statements. She also mentioned the need for technical changes in the pension plan based on changes in the law.

M/S/P (J. Pierson, F. Ulrich): To accept the technical amendments necessary to comply with legal changes.


A. Turnbull led a discussion of the various funding initiatives. She recommended that each group set monthly goals.

Power of One Campaign

W. Gaventa stated there would be an e-mail request for the campaign. He will send something to UCEs about encouraging memberships. He will send out letters for end of the year contributions and handle the thank you letters for commitments from his office. To date, we have raised $13,000 to 15,000 in cash. Some chapters have started identifying who will work on this campaign.

Finance Committee Campaign

J. Pierson described the efforts of the Finance Committee to raise monies for various sponsorship opportunities. The Finance Committee asks that the Board members assist with these efforts.

Drug Company Fundraising

D. Coulter discussed his conversation with Rick Radar about raising monies from health care companies. Potential committee members are being solicited.

Endowment Campaign

A. Turnbull reported that Hank Mann drafted a letter to former AAMR presidents. This effort will continue later with other groups.

SIS Policy Committee

V. Bradley reported the progress of this committee. The group is looking at targets of opportunity as their initial step.

Membership Action Plan

S. Gomez and B. Wagner are heading this look at membership. They plan to have a report in January.

2005 Summit

V. Bradley reported on the meeting of all groups to plan this conference. R. Luckasson noted that reports on implementation of the SIS at this meeting would be useful to moving forward with the support paradigm.

2004 Conference

D. Coulter reported that the review process would occur in October, with the final program completed in November.

Niche Statement

We have a statement on supports and the definition. We still need one on health.

Wingspread Conference

W. Nehring sent a summary report with proposed action steps. The AAMR will have a task force to discuss dissemination of information. She asked for ideas for potential task force members.

Course Packet Project Action Plan

R. Horner reported that this group is moving forward on developing course packets based on MR and AJMR articles.

Archives Committee

There was discussion of the work of this committee, including the fact that they will probably present at the Philadelphia Conference.

Conference of Professional Interests

D. Rotholz reported that they would have a conference call shortly to discuss the Philadelphia Conference and the work on the supports paradigm.


The meeting was adjourned at 2:05 p.m. (EDT).

Respectfully submitted,

Joanna Pierson, PhD, FAAMR


Executive Committee Conference Call October 20, 2003


Call to Order

The meeting was called to order at 12:48 p.m. (EDT) on Monday, October 20, 2003, by President Ann Turnbull.


Members present—Ann Turnbull, president; David Coulter, president-elect; Valerie Bradley, vice president; Joanna Pierson, secretary/treasurer; David Rotholz, Conference of Professional Interests; Suzie Lassiter, Assembly of Geographic Interests; National staff present—M. Doreen Croser, Ana Montoulieu. Guests—Ruth Luckasson, past president.


MidWinter Leadership Meeting

A. Turnbull led a discussion of the specifics of the MidWinter Leadership Meeting. It was agreed that the meeting should result in a clear sense of the organizational mission and a proposed action plan that includes listing who is responsible and timelines for completion of activities. The group discussed the facilitation and support necessary to have everyone accountable for assisting with some part of the strategic plan. Prior to the MidWinter Meeting, the AAMR leadership will be asked for their ideas on the specifics of the strategic plan, how they would like to be involved in its implementation once it is finalized, and encouraged to attend the January meeting to further these efforts. The idea is to create a dialogue about the strategic plan before the January meeting.

At the meeting there will be presentations on specific components of the plan and related areas of Association interest. These will be followed by discussion sessions on these topics. Board members will sit in on each group and take notes. The questions to guide the discussion will ask the groups to examine what they would like National to do, what their constituency can do to help, and what resources could they assist in locating that would help reach the goals. The minutes of these groups would be discussed at the Board of Directors meeting that Sunday. The balanced scorecard may be utilized as a tool for measuring the success of AAMR's efforts.

After the meeting, information will be disseminated to the full group very quickly. In addition, committees will be asked to think about how they can advance the strategic plan and new elected leaders will be invited to work collaboratively on implementing the plan.

An important goal of the MidWinter Meeting is to enhance the leadership skills of people attending the meeting. Possible speakers were discussed.

Connecting people attending during the evenings is a priority to assist new leaders in feeling welcome. Options such as a cash bar and karaoke machine, group reservations at restaurants, group tickets to sporting or other events, and a reception are all possibilities. D. Croser noted that the reception and meals pay for part of the cost of the meeting rooms.

AAMR Office Space Lease

The Executive Committee reviewed the proposal to extend the lease on the current office space.

M/S/P (D. Coulter, V. Bradley): That the proposed 5-year lease for the current office space be approved.

Financial Statements Report

D. Croser reviewed the current financial statements. R. Luckasson commented that it continues to be very helpful to have the items “below the line” that do not reflect current operating monies, that the revised projections essentially end the year even, and that next year we will need to increase revenues to cover rebates and other additional expenses. We are seeing the impact of staff cuts in this year's budget. We need to think about how all of the work of the Association can be covered in future years.

SIS Update

V. Bradley reported that the SIS would be presented at the National Association of State Developmental Disabilities Directors Conference, The Arc Executives Meeting, and ANCOR.

Philadelphia 2004 Conference

D. Coulter reported that he has many of the key speakers. The deadline for submissions has been extended until October 31.


The meeting was adjourned at 2:21 p.m. (EDT).

Respectfully submitted,

Joanna Pierson, PhD, FAAMR


Board of Directors Conference Call November 17, 2003


Call to Order

The meeting was called to order at 1:00 p.m. (EDT) on Monday, November 17, 2003, by President Ann Turnbull.


Members present—Ann Turnbull, president; D. Coulter, president-elect; Valerie Bradley, vice president; Ruth Luckasson, past president; Sharon Coutryer; William Gaventa; Sharon Gomez; Amy Hewitt; Robert Horner; Yves Lachapelle; Suzie Lassiter; Wendy Nehring; Tia Nelis; Genevieve Pugh; David Rotholz; Frances Ulrich. Members absent—Joanna Pierson, secretary/treasurer; Timothy Shriver; Patricia Williams. National staff present: M. Doreen Croser.

M/S/P (F. Ulrich, R. Luckasson): To accept the September 15, 2003, Board of Directors Conference Call minutes with two corrections: Rick Rader's name was misspelled and Sharon Coutryer was present for the call.

M/S/P (F. Ulrich, R. Luckasson): To accept the October 20, 2003, Executive Committee Conference Call minutes. A. Turnbull pointed out the addition of the “To Do” List contained at the end of the minutes.



D. Croser reported that we seem to be holding our own financially. We are not raising money. The SIS will be distributed in December. There have been some tremendous marketing campaigns. Personalized letters were sent to all people who purchased the 10th Edition of Mental Retardation: Definition, Classification, and Systems of Supports. We need to sell over 1,000 units by the end of the year of the SIS. V. Bradley commented that early adopters of the SIS could get reductions. J. Thompson has presented information on the SIS at the Waive Conference, NASDDDS, and the meeting of the Council of Arc Executives. R. Luckasson commented that we are within a few hundred dollars of balancing the budget, and there is no flexibility. Susie Lassiter commented that if the SIS does not sell, we will not balance the budget.

Pharmaceutical Committee Campaign

D. Coulter will work with Rick Rader to facilitate development of an action plan and to identify specific projects we want pharmaceutical companies to underwrite.

Finance Committee Campaign

J. Pierson has been in touch with the Pennhurst Group asking for donations.

Power of One Campaign

B. Gaventa reported that we have received a few pledges. There are some people who have pledged that have not given. We have received between $15,000 and $16,000 in donations. Bill suggested some sort of tie in of the Power of One with the membership renewal campaign.

Strategic Plan

V. Bradley commented that the Strategic Plan was disseminated prior to the conference call. It was her desire to make the plan as functional as possible in terms of specificity. She asked each Board Member to look carefully at their area of responsibility in order to move the tasks ahead. She commented that the plan contains nothing on international issues. The Strategic Plan will be sent to the Regions after this conference call. A. Turnbull will draft a letter and send along with the Strategic Plan to the leadership. D. Croser questioned the funding for the projects and encouraged all to raise the revenue needed to fund the specific activities. The plan is designed in such a way that it has specific outcomes for AAMR and specific outcomes for people with disabilities and their families. Some efforts have been focused on committees developing action plans. We will now concentrate effort on Divisions and SIGS developing action plans. A. Turnbull commented that we need to carve out the niches that we are specifically good at and the focus of action plans should be on supports. The Education Division and Region V of AAMR will work collaboratively to develop an action plan around the Social Activities Domain of the SIS.

10E Implementation Committee

R. Luckasson reported that the 10E Definition is being absorbed into the legal system, and she believes it the most intellectually accurate definition of the condition. There should be some collaboration of the 10E Implementation Committee and the International Committee around the area of International Aspect of Rights. The major products produced by the committee are Training Institutes, Power Point Presentation, Article, and Overview Information posted on the web site.

Ad Hoc Membership Futures Steering Committee

S. Gomez reported that the committee has had three conference calls and will have a full proposal of new membership categories, benefits, and recruitment strategies ready to be reviewed by the Leadership at the MidWinter Meeting.

Ad Hoc Committee on the Adaptive Behavior Instrument

R. Horner reported that the committee has had a conference call to establish activities, procedures for item selection and evaluation, procedures for ensuring cultural sensitivity, and scoring and analysis strategies. Identification of possible sources of funding to support the activities has been discussed. By the end of 2004, the committee will have developed an item bank and the first schema of an assessment instrument. By the end of 2005, the field testing of the preliminary version of the Adaptive Behavior instrument will have been conducted.

Course Packets

R. Horner reported that the committee discussed options for drawing articles from both AJMR and MR. They will identify 3 to 5 topics that they believe are “foundation” articles appearing in the journals that should be read by all students and would fit the content of typical courses in major universities. Steps would be to (a) conduct a soft market assessment to ensure that faculty would find packets of sufficient value that they would assign them as required or supplemental readings; (b) identify a person to edit the course packet effort; (c) manage the selection process and add a preface or introduction that would tie the packet together' and (d) build a timeline. Bill MacLean is taking the lead in this process.

Awards and Fellowship Committee

G. Pugh reported that the Awards and Fellowship Committee will meet by conference call on November 24, 2003. The committee has seven applications to review of candidates to promotion to fellow status and 18 nominations for the various award categories. The committee will also discuss the merits of the current policy that an individual who receives a national AAMR award must wait 10 years to be eligible for a second national award. The committee wants the Board to review this rule at the MidWinter leadership meeting.

2006 International Conference in Montrea

Y. Lachapelle reported on the 2006 International Alliance for Social Inclusion Conference. The theme is “From Normalization, Social Roles Valorization, and Social Inclusion to Social Participation: Sharing our Knowledge and Action Perspectives. He reported that Region X is positive about the international conference, and AAMR should be sponsoring it. D. Croser stated that we should have a serious face-to-face conversation in January 2004 because this would basically mean having our 2006 annual meeting in Canada. V. Bradley will work with Y. Lachepelle and D. Croser to bring a plan to the Board in January. D. Coulter raised the issue that we should discuss how we could have annual meetings in January. A. Turnbull pointed out that this will be an item of discussion for the Executive Committee in December.

Annual Meeting

D. Coulter reported that the Conference Planning Committee was busy firming up keynotes, plenaries, and special theme sessions. Celia Feinstein is serving on the Local Arrangements Committee. D. Coulter said he is interested in marketing the convention to nontraditional groups.

Advancing Technological Communications

D. Croser reported that the national office staff is keeping the Leadership Directory updated. The hard copy has been disseminated, and they are sending quarterly e-mail reminders to regional and chapter leadership regarding the need to keep the national office informed of changes in leadership on the regional and chapter levels. She is investigating a free list serve service and an e-mail system that would operate separately from the membership database. They are exploring ways to communicate with members, Division and SIG leaders, and what Division and SIG leaders need to communicate with their respective constituencies. D. Rotholz commented that he had developed a list serve for the Division and SIG leaders to communicate with each other.

Update on the Health Promotion Conference

W. Nehring reported that she would like time at the leadership meeting in January to discuss the Health Promotion Conference but basically that health is one of our niches. To date they have identified 15 speakers for the conference with representatives from three federal agencies and have written two grants to secure funding for the conference.


The meeting was adjourned at 2:15 p.m. (EDT).

Respectfully submitted,

Sharon Gomez, FAAMR

Member, Board of Directors

Executive Committee Conference Call December 15, 2003


Call to Order

The meeting was called to order at 12:48 p.m. (EST) on Monday, December 15, 2003, by President Ann Turnbull.


Members present—Ann Turnbull, president; David Coulter, president-elect; Valerie Bradley, vice president; Joanna Pierson, secretary/treasurer; David Rotholz, Conference of Professional Interests; Suzie Lassiter, Assembly of Geographic Interests. National staff present—M. Doreen Croser. Guest: Mark Yeager.


MidWinter Leadership Meeting

A. Turnbull led a discussion to finalize the agenda for the meeting. The agenda is designed to create multiple times for discussion. The registration for the meeting is good to date.

The group discussed M. Yeager's ideas on restructuring the Association. He explained that when he was working on the Operations Manual, he realized that AAMR needed additional changes to lead more effectively into the future. There was much discussion about these ideas and how to utilize them at the MidWinter Meeting. The conclusion was to have an open microphone session at the start of the meeting to allow everyone attending a chance to air his or her ideas.

Social events to encourage interaction among the attendees were finalized. On Thursday night, everyone will be invited to meet at the hotel bar at 6:30 p.m. and adjourn to a nearby restaurant. David Rotholz described the Friday night event. We will have appetizers (the cost of which helps pay for the meeting rooms). For this event there will be assigned seating that mixes the different leadership groups attending the meeting. Each table will discuss a fun topic such as the worse or best travel experience on the way to the meeting. Each group will then report this back to the full assemblage. For Saturday evening people can join dinner groups to various ethnic restaurants.

Region/Chapter/Division/SIG mobilization

Regions, Chapters, Divisions, and Special Interest Groups are being encouraged to develop an action plan around one of the domains of the Supports Intensity Scale (SIS) or around the definition of mental retardation. These will consist of products, processes, website materials, or another action related to providing better supports to people. Each group will plan to accomplish its project over the next six to nine months. Susie Lassiter and David Rotholz are developing examples to present to the Assembly and Conference at the MidWinter Meeting.

Financial Statements Report

Budget—J. Pierson and D. Croser explained the financial statements. Instead of a deficit this year, the Association expects a small surplus. Excluding unexpected donations, this will be the first nondeficit year in almost a decade. The difficult decisions made 18 months ago are paying off now in terms of the bottom line. J. Pierson mentioned that everyone should feel good but cautious. The Association needs to continue to move forward so that we do not lose this momentum. A 2004 budget will be presented in January with various options in terms of expenditures.

Fundraising Activities

The Finance Committee has sent 50 letters to exhibitors at the past two conferences about the opportunities for sponsorship and advertising on the webpage and in the journals. The Pharmaceutical Companies Committee will be sending out letters soon. The Endowment Committee has collected $8,100 to date. The Power of One Campaign has collected $12,600 as of October 31.

Philadelphia 2004 Conference

D. Coulter reported that the review process of submissions worked well this year. There was much discussion about the narrow health focus for the conference and the resulting need to target a different audience, including health care entities and professionals such as nurses, physicians, and policymakers in marketing this conference. The need for sessions that welcome self- advocates to the conference was discussed. M. Alfaro is trying to get more space for posters.

Bonus holidays for staff

The AAMR staff policies follow the United States federal employee holiday schedule. As a result, they will receive the day after Christmas as a holiday this year. Because of the lack of raises this year, the Executive Committee discussed granting an additional holiday day.

M/S/P (J. Pierson, D. Rotholz): To approve Christmas Eve as a bonus holiday for AAMR staff.

Joint Legislative Document With The Arc

M/S/P (S. Lassiter, D. Coulter): To approve the draft of the 2004 legislative document with The Arc.

2006 Meeting

The group decided to have a separate call to focus on this. This will include the new officers who are elected by January.


The meeting was adjourned at 2:24 p.m. (EST).

Respectfully submitted,

Joanna Pierson, PhD, FAAMR