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The anticipated cence-less questions

Home Forums Discussion Around Past MNFurs Events And Picnics Ask The Candidates 2015 The anticipated cence-less questions

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  • #29581 Quote
    Ok,.. So against my better judgement im posting this here for 2 reasons.

    1) so the community has a copy of exactly what i submitted to the election committee (this way they can judge for themselves the merits of the argument that i am being “sensored” or relevant questions removed/un-adressed at the candidate dialogue… Maybe im just seeing things out of a reasonable perspective? Or maybe next time around people will want questions like these actually asked.

    2) so im not the goon who sends something in, throws a fit about it in another thread, and then bottles it up/refuses to distribute to others.

    I DO NOT expect to get any answers to these questions let alone realistic ones. They are not the type of thing i wanted to ask online. Further, i posted this here for easy finding.  I want the website administration to understand if there is a more relevant/better place you want to move this topic to i am not opposed to it. I honestly didnt want to load up someones individual Q/A thread with allll thiisss dddrraammmaaa.

    Exact copy of the letter will follow Cut/Paste style..

    #29582 Quote
    Explanation and purpose

    Greetings MNFurs election committee. My name is Cence (gray wolf) and I am a voting eligible member of this community. I was planning on showing up on March 7th to ask and address some concerns I had myself, however a scheduling conflict has me in Wabasha doing mundane military garbage that I cannot get out of. I brought this conflict to the MNFurs Forums where Ridayah suggested I send a list of my questions to you, and ask that you present them to the board members (and potential board member candidates) on the 7th in my stead). If you are willing then please read on.

    Firstly my questions are not “friendly”. They are designed to encourage, and produce for observance the extent of one’s personal beliefs, organizational commitment and convictions. If the perception is that I am unfairly “putting someone on the spot” then they are absolutely correct. For this reason I would like to strongly advocate that a copy of these questions NOT be presented to the potential candidates in advance. This gives someone a chance to convene a social gathering to select the best political and flowery way to answer these questions voiding their authenticity. The candidates of course can answer however they so wish, and will be judged (at least on my part) fairly.

    DISCLAIMER: I presently have no conflict or difficult social situations with any of the board members/candidates (so far as I am aware). I am not targeting anyone specifically or attempting to pursue an individual interest beyond due diligence required to be an informed and responsible voter.

    Below, the actual questions are bold, the explanations are not in bold but I would request that the questions (the entirety of the question) be read regardless if it is in bold or not.

    QUESTIONS FOR EVERYONE RUNNING

    1) Who nominated you, and why did you accept the nomination? (This is a fairly straight forward question that I am certain the committee intends to ask anyway, perhaps the way I worded it will help outline the sincerity in the effort)
    2) For the duration of your term as a board member what do you bring to the organization that anyone else can not? If your intentions are to run for a position that gives you the ability to act upon the community at large (through a consensus of board members) what intentions do you plan to act upon that you could not accomplish by simply approaching a different board member?
    3) MY PERCEPTION: There currently exists a social disparity between those who choose to meet at caribou coffee (on Saturday Bi-Weekly Meetings) and those who reside primarily at Perkins. I understand that this exists for a variety of reasons however none of them are professional. While one could attempt to cite “responsibility to oversee, Liability, or organizational basing” the underlying fact is that there has never been to this date a conflict at either location that requires administrative intervention. Further, the basis for the statement “The caribou gathering is not a MNFurs event” is largely personal. Of interest to the organization and its voting members it additionally has the following effects;
    a. It undermines organizational procedure
    b. It degrades membership values-
    c. Encourages clique sub-factions. (specifically those who aspire, are encouraged, or do
    (As a board member, what would you do with your term to rectify, change, or accommodate those across the street?)
    4) Who’s interests, (if you are successful) do you think you are representing? Explanation: I am certainly very interested in voting for adequate representation within the MNFurs community. If you want to represent GPS, or another faction run for their board. I want to know that the people representing me are altruistically interested in promoting this community/chapter of the furry fandom and this question is designed to put you on record.
    5) Who is the most handsome gray wolf you know?

    QUESTIONS FOR CURRENT BOARD MEMBERS UP FOR RE-ELECTIONS

    1) The three candidates up for re elections are Kurst, Aerak, and Ridayah. It is worth mentioning, that all three of you put forth a considerable amount of time and effort (border lining ridiculous amount of effort) and in kursts case certainly beyond ridiculous) in order to build something we (the community) enjoy. For that, I want to personally thank you. Additionally I want to ask you the following question;
    a. Why continue? Knowing that your job is largely thankless except from a few good folks who realize what you put in to keep the machine going, why is winning this election personally important to you?
    2) What do you see as your priorities for your next term? What do you hope to accomplish with the time you are elected to spend on the board of directors?
    3) What do you regret from your last term? Any plans to rectify the mistakes (if applicable)?

    QUESTIONS FOR THOSE WISHIN TO FILL THE ROLE OF A BOARD MEMBER UP FOR RE-ELECT

    1) The candidates that are competing for a MNFurs board member slot are Krios, Takyoji and Snap E Cat (yes I wrote the whole thing out just for you fuzzy) This question is for Krios, and Takyoji. I do not know you. Never even remember hearing about you. What did you do to earn a nomination? What do you think you did to earn a nomination?
    2) Again for Krios and Takyoji When I attempt research, or ask around about you I can find no information at all. I am largely told “you’re the quiet kid who sits in the corner” In your defense please tell me a little bit about you, your visions for this group, and what you have done to qualify to represent me? Explanation : I do not want to elect a quiet or socially awkward candidate as a representative.. If I had my way, I want someone who is going to fight for this community and read green eggs and ham for 20+ hours to a committee if for no other reason than they feel they are representing the interest of the group. I don’t want someone who is going to get run over socially.
    3) For Snap E Cat: I have watched you for years now, giving everything your able from your time to your skill to your resources. You work diligently to promote this community and again, from myself, I thank you. I also want to ask you the following;
    a. If you got elected, and could choose.. which one of the three current board members would you replace and why? Understand that they all fill very large shoes and although your feet are epic in proportion, I’m curious how you feel you could be MORE successful than the current team.
    4) Do you feel the current board is effective? If not, how would you change it aside from simply getting a spot on it?

    CONCLUSION

    I will thank you for asking my questions. Once these are answered I have nothing further but will thank you, and the candidates for their time and their thoughts.

    #29593 Quote
    1) Who nominated you, and why did you accept the nomination? (This is a fairly straight forward question that I am certain the committee intends to ask anyway, perhaps the way I worded it will help outline the sincerity in the effort)

    I nominated myself for re-election.

    2) For the duration of your term as a board member what do you bring to the organization that anyone else can not? If your intentions are to run for a position that gives you the ability to act upon the community at large (through a consensus of board members) what intentions do you plan to act upon that you could not accomplish by simply approaching a different board member?

    Perspective. I mean, honestly that should be the answer for any candidate. You bring forward your vision of MNFurs. But you also have to consider roles. Can I for instance say I’d be a better treasurer (or more qualified) than Kurst. No. If in that role I would perform adequately but nothing more. Likewise could I claim to be a better secretary than Ridayah? Again, I’m not sure I could. However I am way more skilled at being ME than either of them. I am a diplomat, and I am very good at working with different parties for a mutual goal, even if those parties don’t know they are working towards a common goal. I am personable, responsible, and at the end of the day, I DO have an agenda. I am not strictly here as a camp councilor. I have a vision for MNFurs and what it can be, and I am here to push that agenda. I don’t think anyone else is more qualified to do that.

    I am a good public speaker. I am good in front of a camera and I feel I have represented the group in a positive light in regards to the media. I have taken the lead on events that people have really enjoyed, I have produced videos for the group, and I have put in over 160 hours this past election cycle not counting board meetings.

    3) MY PERCEPTION: There currently exists a social disparity between those who choose to meet at caribou coffee (on Saturday Bi-Weekly Meetings) and those who reside primarily at Perkins. I understand that this exists for a variety of reasons however none of them are professional. While one could attempt to cite “responsibility to oversee, Liability, or organizational basing” the underlying fact is that there has never been to this date a conflict at either location that requires administrative intervention. Further, the basis for the statement “The caribou gathering is not a MNFurs event” is largely personal. Of interest to the organization and its voting members it additionally has the following effects;
    a. It undermines organizational procedure
    b. It degrades membership values-
    c. Encourages clique sub-factions. (specifically those who aspire, are encouraged, or do
    (As a board member, what would you do with your term to rectify, change, or accommodate those across the street?)

    I would push to have us moved under one roof. We are all one group – we are all furries (or furry friendly people) living in or around MN. Caribou sprang up primarily because the Perkins is no longer a suitable home for us. It is too small. There have been numerous discussions on what to do, both at board meetings and at community forums. My answer for what to do is put us all in a hotel – that is the situation I would like to see. I have developed relationships with many hotels through my involvement in Furry Migrations Hotel Department and imagine being able to rent a meeting room (or two)? Imagine having a swimming pool, a hot-tub, and a good restaruant. Imagine all this space and having it at least once a month. It’s not a reality right now, but it is certainly a possibility. We’d either need to do a minimum food order for the event, or have people pay $5 to attend. That’s the down side. However, imagine a hotel meet happening once a month with a different (free) furmeet alternating with it.

    1) The three candidates up for re elections are Kurst, Aerak, and Ridayah. It is worth mentioning, that all three of you put forth a considerable amount of time and effort (border lining ridiculous amount of effort) and in kursts case certainly beyond ridiculous) in order to build something we (the community) enjoy. For that, I want to personally thank you. Additionally I want to ask you the following question;
    a. Why continue? Knowing that your job is largely thankless except from a few good folks who realize what you put in to keep the machine going, why is winning this election personally important to you?
    2) What do you see as your priorities for your next term? What do you hope to accomplish with the time you are elected to spend on the board of directors?
    3) What do you regret from your last term? Any plans to rectify the mistakes (if applicable)?

    A. Because I love this group and am passionate about it. We, and when I say “we” I mean all of us in this community, have made this one of the best communities in the world. Yes, this job is most of the time thankless, but if you are in it for glory you’ve got it all wrong. It’s a lot of work. That work isn’t fun. The fun part comes in seeing the community grow. I had a really sappy moment at last Furry Migration where I looked out the window of my hotel room on Sunday and saw a bunch of people loading up their cars. They all were smiling and they were hugging people and saying their goodbyes. They had had a good time and made friends. And I got a little teary eyed. All this thankless hard work made a difference in someone’s life. That’s where the fun comes in. That’s the fulfillment.

    2. I want to overhaul the community forum. I started these things up but handed off the responsibility during last election – it was decided early that the Vice President would have a direct hand overseeing these. Last year I became President so I handed off the responsibility to the new Vice President. However, this past year attendance has fallen. I believe I know how to fix these meetings and allow more involvement within the general community.

    3. I regret not getting out there as much as I should have and meeting new people and introducing myself and the role I am in. I rectified this late last summer and went out of my way to meet and talk to new faces, but I should have been doing it sooner.

    And it looks like I forgot to answer a question so I will tackle it below:

    4) Who’s interests, (if you are successful) do you think you are representing? Explanation: I am certainly very interested in voting for adequate representation within the MNFurs community. If you want to represent GPS, or another faction run for their board. I want to know that the people representing me are altruistically interested in promoting this community/chapter of the furry fandom and this question is designed to put you on record.

    I’m here to represent the furry fandom; to provide for our members, to promote our interests, to build talent, and to build bridges with other organizations. I’m also here to educate others outside of our fandom against misrepresentations and show what it is we have to offer and how we fit in to the puzzle of geeky fandoms. So to summarize: promote, build talent, educate, have fun.

     

    And just a general FYI. I wanted to get this out asap so I wrote it while on breaks at work – hence the numerous edits as I answered more questions. I have not edited my responses.

    • This reply was modified 7 years, 8 months ago by Aerak.
    • This reply was modified 7 years, 8 months ago by Aerak.
    • This reply was modified 7 years, 8 months ago by Aerak.
    • This reply was modified 7 years, 8 months ago by Aerak.
    #29595 Quote
    I’m writing this raw – so this is being responded as fast as I can write. The idea is make sure it’s less filtered – more raw to simulate you talking to me Cence. So grammer/spelling mistakes please ignore 🙂 I know I am getting this out before other people but I rather have my response be from me and not influence by other people.

    QUESTIONS FOR EVERYONE RUNNING

    1) Who nominated you, and why did you accept the nomination? (This is a fairly straight forward question that I am certain the committee intends to ask anyway, perhaps the way I worded it will help outline the sincerity in the effort)

    I nominated myself because well I don’t expect anyone to nominate peope who are on the board. And I nomiated and accepted because I think I can help the community. (I know sounds weird but see below question 1 for returning members for the real response we don’t need to double enter here)

    2) For the duration of your term as a board member what do you bring to the organization that anyone else can not? If your intentions are to run for a position that gives you the ability to act upon the community at large (through a consensus of board members) what intentions do you plan to act upon that you could not accomplish by simply approaching a different board member?

    What I bring to the board that I don’t see in many is determination and willpower to get things done. A drive that is unstoppable. I also bring my experience as a long career working in print (yes print), marketing, and computing industry in QA, manager, customer relation, developer, and team leader rolls with a degree in computer science and business administration I can bring unique skills and knowledge from my past education and current job to provide. But I also bring experience from non profit training, from being on board, from being in other organization, and just someone who has been in our community for a long time to the board that would be a huge loss of knowledge if missing.

    Strangely there is one thing that I also bring – my age that is unique for a community like furry. People treat me different inside and outside because I am older. I am the one that is pulled over and asked what is happening here. People in the outside community do feel more comfortable asking me questions because of that. It’s a double edge sword but an odd role that I am guiding myself into.

    For jobs I plan to take on things that the people don’t seem as menial and also boring. I don’t find repetitive things that boring in life. I have a business background in administration and I handle budgets in previous jobs.

    3) MY PERCEPTION: There currently exists a social disparity between those who choose to meet at caribou coffee (on Saturday Bi-Weekly Meetings) and those who reside primarily at Perkins. I understand that this exists for a variety of reasons however none of them are professional. While one could attempt to cite “responsibility to oversee, Liability, or organizational basing” the underlying fact is that there has never been to this date a conflict at either location that requires administrative intervention. Further, the basis for the statement “The caribou gathering is not a MNFurs event” is largely personal. Of interest to the organization and its voting members it additionally has the following effects;
    a. It undermines organizational procedure
    b. It degrades membership values-
    c. Encourages clique sub-factions. (specifically those who aspire, are encouraged, or do
    (As a board member, what would you do with your term to rectify, change, or accommodate those across the street?)

    With the history of the bi-weekly meets were and what they evolved to – I personally think that the bi-weekly meets as we have them now are not overall helping the community and in the long term just pushing the community apart. Both locations is providing a cliche feeling and that is not the goal of any organization. What is worse if either of those two location is close/unavaialbe/kick out the other location can’t handle it. Most likly the tipping/imploding point will happen. It’s a time bomb waiting to happen.

    My personal belief is that we should look in getting more events happening in the twin cities. More things people like to do and ways for people to meet up. Meet locations across the whole area not just one. Not just meet for food, meet at a coffee shop, but things like outings for fursuiting, educational activities, going to museum and other things. and then concentrate on big and bigger events quartery to bring everyone together this can be like the winter holiday party and our picnics. But key is at least 4 a year hopfully as more people get involved go to 6 or more of these medium/larger scale events. In essence give less reason to have bi-weekly meets and more reasons to be out and about and doing things.

    While that might seem to be “ignoring the problem/sidestepping” I really don’t think the problem is going to be solvable any other way than get people from both sides re-engaging and getting out of their shell. The real problem with this solution will be getting momentum and changing people so they not only want to help run these events but also want to go to these events more than the bi-weekly meet ups.

    I really rather have more things than be stuck with bi-weekly meets.

    4) Who’s interests, (if you are successful) do you think you are representing? Explanation: I am certainly very interested in voting for adequate representation within the MNFurs community. If you want to represent GPS, or another faction run for their board. I want to know that the people representing me are altruistically interested in promoting this community/chapter of the furry fandom and this question is designed to put you on record.

    I want to represent the interest in the community. I don’t want to represent a 3rd party. I am here to represent Minensota Furs that means MNFurs and Furry Migration and anything that doesn’t allow me to represent them I don’t want to be involved with. I want to have the best organzation for the community not one that is driving some other organzation agenda.

    5) Who is the most handsome gray wolf you know?

    Crunch! He’s a basketball star! He almost run me down with a Segway but I don’t hold it against him.

    QUESTIONS FOR CURRENT BOARD MEMBERS UP FOR RE-ELECTIONS

    1) The three candidates up for re elections are Kurst, Aerak, and Ridayah. It is worth mentioning, that all three of you put forth a considerable amount of time and effort (border lining ridiculous amount of effort) and in kursts case certainly beyond ridiculous) in order to build something we (the community) enjoy. For that, I want to personally thank you. Additionally I want to ask you the following question;
    a. Why continue? Knowing that your job is largely thankless except from a few good folks who realize what you put in to keep the machine going, why is winning this election personally important to you?

    First of all I don’t want to be board member forever. I was one of the last people to officialy throw my name in the hat. I had to look back and decide. Is this worth it. Is the sticks and rocks thrown at worth the effort. Is it worth staring at night frustrated that you found out that someone had something you could of worked out a solution six months ago. Is it worth frustrated to hear a friend of a friend of a friend of a friend saying you did something you didn’t do. it does hurt when I can’t solve or help out. It does hurt when people don’t allow you to help. It does hurt when people won’t talk to you because you are on the board. It hurts. It does hurt.

    But I also look what good I can do for the community. How I can help keep the con and MNFurs going. How I can be there for people when they need me. How I can help things keep going so people can have fun. For me that out ways the bad. I want to sleep knowing I did the greatest good to the greatest number of people. I don’t care if I take every hit from the group if I can help one person meet a new friend. People getting together to have fun, to learn, and to help then it’s all worth it.

    Because of that I feel I have a repsonsibilty to the community. I feel that I need to conitnue to help and support the group at a board member at this time. I want to allow other people to learn, grow, and people to have fun. I don’t want there to be a big vacuum that is hard to repair. I want a wonderful community, a great con, and a community with people I can call friends.

    I want to win a role on the board because really honestly – I can for the community and people. I feel I can do the maxium impact – to allow the community to grow and expand. I feel being there I have the skills that can be used to help people. And that’s my goal to help people. I don’t like being in a place where I can’t help people. I want to be able to sleep at night knowing I help people and our local community.

    2) What do you see as your priorities for your next term? What do you hope to accomplish with the time you are elected to spend on the board of directors?

    (moves some answers from 1)
    I feel I need to do those things:
    A) Make sure all the procedures from a legal are done and documented so the next person can take it on
    Obvious – docuemnation. Write up schedules. Make sure we have all the i dotted and t cross with the goverment. Clean up our storage and make sure we have duplicates of all important information.
    B) Train people in skills to help run the board
    Try to have meetings either one on one or with group. Invite more people to board meetings. Invite people to be “under” officer positions that have the will and/or talent to long term work and act witht he orgaiznation.
    C) Improve communcation – improve trust
    Improve communcation from all parts from members to con, members to board, board to members, etc. I want to stop whispers and rumors coming out. I want to make sure people feel they are communcating and being heard.
    Take time out to talk with people from on the forums, one on one, and group meetings. Learn what they need, learn their problems. Help shed light and just really keep talking and listening. Try to solve their problem, compromise, and explain why something is done that way.
    D) Improve the community both local and regioanl and get it to be a more active base for everyone
    This is a long one. This is something that will take everyone helping and doing. I want a calendar filled with events, meet ups, and education purposes. So to do that is to help people local and regional to do small scale events. To help make the process of doing an event easier to figure out. Provide more support as an organziation. I want to find embassadors for a region to run regional events – that MNFurs can help by providing resources in money, time, even anme that a 501c3 can provide. I want make it clear on how to do an event for themselves and/or the group as a whole. I want people to feel that if they want to do a simple meet up they can, but at the same time when something more complex.
    E) Imporve the online community and get it a more active base
    The big problem is providing an active community that isn’t being split up by online properties like facebook, FA, twitter that also limit what we can and can’t communciation and who is listening to what it naturally makes people into clicks. While we need to continue to use those to communication it’s important that we keep our own hub that people can use and socialize throughout the year.
    Our website is better than what it is before. It’s improving all the time but it needs help to keep evovling. After the election I want to work with members of the community to find out
    1) What it’s lacking
    2) What is confuising
    3) What can be improved.
    This can be graphical, this can be feature, this can be procedural. But I first want to go through all the content, menu, etc and make sure it makes sense where it is and what it says. Rewrite where necessary. If we need changes to forms/policies discuss with the stake holders like MNFurs event team, the secretary, etc. Get the site better working, make it simpler, then start adding where is necessary.
    Also reworking and making groups on the website more useful. So people feel free to post and disuss topics more dear to themselves.
    F) Get our “Educational/Charity” side of Minnesota Furs going
    Well one part is external to the group. Go to other non profit organzations that we can help out be doing things providing costume permforms to just helping out by providing warm bodies. By doing this we are educating our members on other non profits, we are helping other non profits with their goals, and we are showing the community who we trully are not just some people wearing costumes.
    For our group internally. One on one education for about the non profit, panels on topics from social skills, to discussion groups on art and costuming. More talk and communcation.
    G) Prepare for retirement.
    I want the board and the community to be ready for me to leave. THis could be hit by a bus, this could be because I am tired and I need to rest, this could be because I didn’t get re-elected and I need a break, I didn’t run for various reasons, but more likly because I moved into a house made out of sour skittles and sour patch kids and I won’t leave. I need to make an exit plan and have everything I do in the community to be duplicated by at least 2 people who will be around. This will be done by training, taking time out, and gaining trust both way with the person. This is probally going to be the hardest thing for me to do but I need to do it.

    3) What do you regret from your last term? Any plans to rectify the mistakes (if applicable)?

    Failed cloning experiments.

    Seriously – It’s not being able to hear people complaints/concerns until way too late, not having people able to step in my shoes instantly, and pissing off people when they are trying to help.
    As I mentioned before i feel like I can’t help the community and myself if I can’t solve people’s concerns and complaints in a timely fashion. I think a lot of the other groundwork of the group was filling too much of my time. Even though it’s necessary for the community I know people felt it wasn’t. It’s improving communication by taking time out to talk, and maybe provide more ways to get in contact even provide an anonymous way if that would help.

    I also feel I am not handing off tasks and training people as well I as I could. I think both I screwed that up on the con and mnfurs site. I need to take more time off from doing things to showing how to do things.I need to give more people “the keys to the kingdom”

    I also am very upset at myself when I piss off a volunteer that I know they are trying to do good. Conflict happens. And I hope I feel I say “sorry” loud enough to allow them to continue to work and help the organzation.

    I hope these responses answered your questions.

    Member of Minnesota Furs a 501c3 Non Profit, former Convention Chairman for Furry Migration, volunteer, and always doings lots of other stuff.

    Feel free to ask questions because I'm here for you!
    Kurst "YipYap" Hyperyote

    #29608 Quote
    QUESTIONS FOR EVERYONE RUNNING

    1) Who nominated you, and why did you accept the nomination? (This is a fairly straight forward question that I am certain the committee intends to ask anyway, perhaps the way I worded it will help outline the sincerity in the effort)

    Probably, the reason the committee didn’t ask the question is that most, if not all of us, nominated ourselves. This sort of plays into my whole reasoning with the other thread, on ‘why run if we’re not willing to say we’re the better person for the job’.  Well, by nominating ourselves for the position, that’s what we’re saying, at least in my opinion.
    2) For the duration of your term as a board member what do you bring to the organization that anyone else can not? If your intentions are to run for a position that gives you the ability to act upon the community at large (through a consensus of board members) what intentions do you plan to act upon that you could not accomplish by simply approaching a different board member?

    Well, something that I’ve noticed in my years of being a member of the local community, is that I see most if not all of the events taking place in the suburbs or at out-of-the-way locations.  As someone who doesn’t have a vehicle of their own and who relies either on public transportation or on getting rides from others, this kinda bugs me.  The Twin Cities has a fantastic public transit system that only continues to improve, and I feel like we as a community could be leveraging that better, when considering places to hold events or the like.  Aside from that, I would really, really like to do something about the bi-weekly meets.  I believe the situation there is toxic and has been for a while, and that needs to be remedied.  No, I’m not talking about the people who go to either part of it, I’m talking about the whole situation.
    3) MY PERCEPTION: There currently exists a social disparity between those who choose to meet at caribou coffee (on Saturday Bi-Weekly Meetings) and those who reside primarily at Perkins. I understand that this exists for a variety of reasons however none of them are professional. While one could attempt to cite “responsibility to oversee, Liability, or organizational basing” the underlying fact is that there has never been to this date a conflict at either location that requires administrative intervention. Further, the basis for the statement “The caribou gathering is not a MNFurs event” is largely personal. Of interest to the organization and its voting members it additionally has the following effects;
    a. It undermines organizational procedure
    b. It degrades membership values-
    c. Encourages clique sub-factions. (specifically those who aspire, are encouraged, or do
    (As a board member, what would you do with your term to rectify, change, or accommodate those across the street?)

    Whoo boy, isn’t this just a thing?  This follows pretty nicely from the end of my previous response, actually, and I’m going to disagree with you on certain aspects.  First off, there have been conflicts at -all- locations, including the Applebees, that has warranted official intervention.  People have been treating all establishments pretty poorly, in all honesty, and some have been acting as though it is a right, and not a privilege, to be there.  First, let’s address a pretty good reason why the ‘MNFurs Event’ is labeled as being at Perkins: the Perkins has an understanding with our group, and lets us use that back room for free, with the understanding that it’s a pretty significant amount of business every other week.  We don’t just show up and sit back there…the management reserves the area for us during that time.  We have no such arrangement with either Caribou or Applebees, and so cannot label either as being part of the event.  This isn’t an attempt to estrange people who choose one venue over the other, it’s simply an administrative reality.  That said, the management of all locations has approached members of our community to complain about our conduct there.  People are showing up, taking space, not buying anything…making messes…staying past closing time…being unnecessarily loud or disruptive to other patrons…bringing other food in…even worse, ordering food and not paying bills.  These are serious problems, and if things get too bad the management of any location is perfectly free to tell us to take a hike, if we start being more trouble than we’re worth.  I think too many people take the bi-weekly meets for granted, and don’t really realize how precarious of a situation it can be.

    As for the clique-ish nature of things…well, there is a lot of history behind that, stretching far, far back in the group’s history, back long before the idea of even incorporating or having a steering group had begun to be thought of.  Certainly back before I was ever a part of this community.  I have, however, noticed something pretty interesting in my time here: these problems seem to be exacerbated by the location.  Go to the bi-weekly meets, then go to the picnics.  It’s an -entirely- different atmosphere, with people on both sides of the Perkins/Caribou divide co-mingling rather happily.  The simple fact of the matter is that places like Caribou and Perkins are made for small (4-10 person) groups, and we have -long- since surpassed that.  Booths and tables in a restaurant situation are completely antithetical to large-group get-togethers, and only serve to promote clique-ish behavior and alienate those who are new or are on the ‘outside’.  My goal, as a board member, would honestly be to search for an entirely different venue, that would be conducive to large-group activities, as I believe the only real solution to the Perkins/Caribou problem is to start over entirely, and leave those locations behind.  They may have served us well in the past, but like a child removing the training wheels on their bike, it’s time for us to admit that we’ve outgrown them and move on.

    4) Who’s interests, (if you are successful) do you think you are representing? Explanation: I am certainly very interested in voting for adequate representation within the MNFurs community. If you want to represent GPS, or another faction run for their board. I want to know that the people representing me are altruistically interested in promoting this community/chapter of the furry fandom and this question is designed to put you on record.

    I am running to represent the furry community.  I know that there is this fear some have that we’re being ‘owned’ or ‘run’ by GPS.  Believe me, that is not the case.  They certainly helped us get off the ground, and our Strategic Partnership with them gets us access to a lot of useful resources, but we are an independent entity, something that I believe is pretty well spelled out in our charter.
    5) Who is the most handsome gray wolf you know?

    I plead the fifth.

    QUESTIONS FOR THOSE WISHIN TO FILL THE ROLE OF A BOARD MEMBER UP FOR RE-ELECT

    1) The candidates that are competing for a MNFurs board member slot are Krios, Takyoji and Snap E Cat (yes I wrote the whole thing out just for you fuzzy) This question is for Krios, and Takyoji. I do not know you. Never even remember hearing about you. What did you do to earn a nomination? What do you think you did to earn a nomination?

    Again, I nominated myself.  You may not have heard of me, but really I’m fine with that.  I’m not here to make a name for myself, or to achieve notoriety.  I want to help the group grow, and if I can do that, I don’t care if people know who I am or not.  That said, I’m certainly not against people getting to know me, or approaching me with questions or comments, and will gladly answer such.
    2) Again for Krios and Takyoji When I attempt research, or ask around about you I can find no information at all. I am largely told “you’re the quiet kid who sits in the corner” In your defense please tell me a little bit about you, your visions for this group, and what you have done to qualify to represent me? Explanation : I do not want to elect a quiet or socially awkward candidate as a representative.. If I had my way, I want someone who is going to fight for this community and read green eggs and ham for 20+ hours to a committee if for no other reason than they feel they are representing the interest of the group. I don’t want someone who is going to get run over socially.

    Now, one reason that I’m not super-well-known in the community is that I don’t go to the bi-weekly meets.  This is in part due to their scheduling, as I tend to have previous commitments on Saturday evenings.  This is in part due to the fact that getting public transit out there is hellish.  This is also in part due to my feelings that the locations have become toxic to the group (as explained in previous answers), and I don’t wish to support that toxicity.

    I am not, however, unwilling to put myself forward.  For example, I represent the community already as the Head of the Dealer’s Den for Furry Migration. I simply -cannot- be quiet and socially awkward while performing that position, as it requires quite a bit of interaction with other members who are helping run the convention, as well as all of the dealers who have or will attend.

    As for my visions for the group, I believe that I have outlined those pretty well in my previous answers to your questions.
    4) Do you feel the current board is effective? If not, how would you change it aside from simply getting a spot on it?

    I feel like the current board has been pretty effective, but again, I feel that there are certain issues that aren’t being looked at properly.  As I have stated, the issues with the Bi-Weekly meets -need to change-, and that would be a big part of what I want to get accomplished as a member of the Board, as well as working to fix the feeling that there is a divide between the Board and the community.

    #29621 Quote
    So apparently I forgot to hit submit last night, go figure. Anyways, here we are with my answers!

    1) Who nominated you, and why did you accept the nomination? (This is a fairly straight forward question that I am certain the committee intends to ask anyway, perhaps the way I worded it will help outline the sincerity in the effort)

    I nominated myself – partly because I love being on the board and helping out, partly because I feel I haven’t contributed all I can yet, and partly because I know how much of a pain the task of managing the paperwork, insurance, filings, etc can be and I’m not sure anyone else with the exception of Kurst is trained up for it/ready to fill that role yet. I know I can do it, and I’d rather take on that rather onerous duty, because it doesn’t bug me.

    2) For the duration of your term as a board member what do you bring to the organization that anyone else can not? If your intentions are to run for a position that gives you the ability to act upon the community at large (through a consensus of board members) what intentions do you plan to act upon that you could not accomplish by simply approaching a different board member?

    Really, two things here. The first is something I touched on above, that I have a willingness and ability to handle all the paperwork and minutia of running an organization. To me, while not necessarily enjoyable, it’s something I get satisfaction from being able to do, and having done it before in my life for other things i’ve been involved in gives me a bit more insight into what’s needed. The second thing is that, and you can check with the other board members, I often will pick up the position of devil’s advocate to ensure we’ve fully discussed options and tried to look at all sides of any issue. When on a board it can be tempting to just go “Everyone always agrees with this”, but it’s important to make sure that even though you may agree, that everyone think fully about the possible ramifications of what they’re doing. So between the willingness to dot the i’s and cross the t’s on the paperwork and other aspects of organizations, and my desire to make sure we fully investigate all avenues of our decisions (even if it means others are angry at me for a bit), that is what I feel I bring to the board that I could not as readily do off it.

    3) MY PERCEPTION: There currently exists a social disparity between those who choose to meet at caribou coffee (on Saturday Bi-Weekly Meetings) and those who reside primarily at Perkins. I understand that this exists for a variety of reasons however none of them are professional. While one could attempt to cite “responsibility to oversee, Liability, or organizational basing” the underlying fact is that there has never been to this date a conflict at either location that requires administrative intervention. Further, the basis for the statement “The caribou gathering is not a MNFurs event” is largely personal. Of interest to the organization and its voting members it additionally has the following effects;
    a. It undermines organizational procedure
    b. It degrades membership values-
    c. Encourages clique sub-factions. (specifically those who aspire, are encouraged, or do
    (As a board member, what would you do with your term to rectify, change, or accommodate those across the street?)

    I would disagree on the administrative intervention level – every location (Perkins, Caribou, and Applebees) has had issues arise for a variety of reasons. Enough so that last year both Aerak and myself made a point to give the managers of all three locations our contact info to let them call us should something happen, because we’d heard through the grapevine (and later confirmed with the site’s management) that things HAD happened. We also did that because those managers talk to each other throughout the cities, both within their branches and with other stores, and ill behavior at one restaurant or gathering place may make it harder for us to reserve a space at another restaurant or gathering site in the future. Fortunately it’s not happened yet to us.

    Now as for Caribou and by extension Applebee’s, they aren’t officially listed MNFurs events.  But this has been something that’s been talked about a lot – what caused that split, and what can we do to rectify it?  I think part of the problem is that the two places (Perkins and Caribou) are there because they cater to two different needs in the community.  What those are I’m not exactly sure, but essentially it’s a needs question.  You get to the picnic, or the holiday party, or some other events and everyone from both places shows up and boom.  It’s intermingling city!  So I think it’s something about the locations and how places like coffee shops and restaurants are set up.  This is part of my desire this summer to do more little picnics and events like that, to encourage the mingling and ease pressure off both locations.  I’ve also talked with the board, and if I’m re-elected, I’m going to continue to push that we are stable fiscally enough that we can afford to sink the cost of 2-3 times a year paying for a larger reservation.  One of our biggest problems for alternate meet sites is that there’s an up-front cost for the reservation of the facilities, and up until now we’ve either not had the funds or had to use the donation funds to help focus on other things such as other events or the convention.  I feel this will help bring the mingling together, and help us identify WHAT exactly causes/caused this issue of Perkins and Caribou so it doesn’t happen again.  I don’t think it’s just the locations, but something about the setups, but we aren’t sure what it is yet and those I’ve talked to aren’t sure either.  So it’s time to start trying new things and see if that helps.  I want to hear from ALL sides what they don’t like about one place or another and try to find ways that we can all come together.  Call it a pet peeve.

    4) Who’s interests, (if you are successful) do you think you are representing? Explanation: I am certainly very interested in voting for adequate representation within the MNFurs community. If you want to represent GPS, or another faction run for their board. I want to know that the people representing me are altruistically interested in promoting this community/chapter of the furry fandom and this question is designed to put you on record.

    Y’know, I’ve heard from day one these accusations about GPS being an influence in MNFurs, and no matter how many times it comes up and we try to say “no” the rumor persists.  I can unequivocally tell everyone that is not the case.  MNFurs board members are here to represent MNFurs, both as a force for our members internally, and a face for who our community is externally.  That goes for me too – nothing is more important than supporting and representing OUR members, not another group’s.

    If anyone, ANYONE, has concerns that another organization has undue influence over our group, I invite them to come talk to me.  I was there through the entirety of the setup of the organizational documents for MNFurs, I was the one who filed them with the state, and my hands were literally the ones that typed it all up.  I would argue I am in a unique position to understand the bylaws and regulations of MNFurs and can show anyone that the only group influencing MNFurs, is the members who take part in our community.  I got involved in the board and in this because I love MNFurs.  It was where I found some of my first friends, some of the people I’ve known and respected the longest, and why I’ll fight tooth and nail to keep it about the awesome furs who make it up.  We do work with GPS, yes – via a contractual agreement I also have available, which provides us with a mailing address, storage space, and regular access to their event space – but that again is via contract and all obligations are clearly laid out there.
    5) Who is the most handsome gray wolf you know?

    It’s gotta be the gray wolf plush on my dresser.  It’s just soooooo cute!

    QUESTIONS FOR CURRENT BOARD MEMBERS UP FOR RE-ELECTIONS

    1) The three candidates up for re elections are Kurst, Aerak, and Ridayah. It is worth mentioning, that all three of you put forth a considerable amount of time and effort (border lining ridiculous amount of effort) and in kursts case certainly beyond ridiculous) in order to build something we (the community) enjoy. For that, I want to personally thank you. Additionally I want to ask you the following question;
    a. Why continue? Knowing that your job is largely thankless except from a few good folks who realize what you put in to keep the machine going, why is winning this election personally important to you?

    Why continue, even when we face criticism constantly from the very people we want to represent?  Good question.

    For me, personally, it’s about knowing I’m doing to help others.  I firmly believe that everyone has unique skills that let them do things others may not be able to do as easily, or even at all.  I know with me I have a willingness to take the flak of making calls and the fortitude to stand by uncomfortable decisions, even if it makes people unhappy, because it’s what the group needs for long-term survival.  Sometimes, what the community wants would legally or socially be damaging to the community, or could hurt someone.  That’s not an easy place to be in, but I know how to handle it.  Between that and my ability to stare at paperwork and figure it out to fill it out properly, I see those as two skills I can readily do that others might not.   I feel that I wouldn’t be doing what’s best for the community if I didn’t offer up, and use, those skills to help out those in MNFurs who may not be able to do such work, whether they’re on the board or not.

    So I suppose it goes without saying too, regardless of whether I’m elected, I would push to stay on as an elected secretary to the board, to help out with some of those roles, and even if not I will find ways to use my skills to help MNFurs.  But I feel I can do the most good with these skills from the board, and make it a bit easier on me too.  Just because I can do some hard/unfun tasks, doesn’t mean I want to make it harder!   But I will continue doing what I can for MNFurs regardless.  It is THAT important to my life.
    2) What do you see as your priorities for your next term? What do you hope to accomplish with the time you are elected to spend on the board of directors?

    The last few years have been focused on what I called the ‘foundational’ period – filing the paperwork, getting the ‘board calendar’ together, training our initial directors and making sure we were good to become the org we’ve all envisioned.  That had been my focus above and beyond all things, and my attention to the community suffered.  More on that below.  But essentially that foundational period is over now – and we’re transitioning into what I call a ‘continuing’ organization, one that’s stable and has all the legwork done.  This means a lot of focus can now be transferred from myself back into the community.  What I want to accomplish is three-fold:

    • Expand and grow the list of MNFurs events, to include educational and support type events to help our members
    • Train up more people to be staff for MNFurs who help with events, organization, and all that stuff
    • Work to expand MNFurs both in the metro and beyond by providing a framework of resources, be it web skills, support in administration, volunteering help, and so on to both geeky organizations here in Minnesota (anime, sci fi, zoo support, etc) and to furs beyond MN.  (To this effect I intend to do a much better organizing furmeets in your area panel at Furry Migration this year again.)

    These three things are the big ones I want to work on for the next two years of my hopeful tenure.  The paperwork load is less and I can readily focus on the thing that matters most now – the community and MNFurs as a whole, and who we’ll be.  Plus, I really want to train more people.  REALLY DO.  The whole ‘hit by a bus’ worry is strong in this dark side one.  I’ve already got ideas of some people I feel could fill useful roles, and I’m merely waiting to find out the outcome of the election before I begin to roll out on these plans.
    3) What do you regret from your last term? Any plans to rectify the mistakes (if applicable)?

    I devoted myself heavily to the paperwork and getting MNFurs, as an organization with the state and federal government, off the ground during the last term.  As I mentioned above,  this means that my focus on the community suffered a bit.  I think across the whole board it suffered a bit, and we are aware of it and are now doing our damnedest to begin tackling that.  Personally, it’s MY biggest regret.  I wanted to do more, but there were only so many hours in the day.

    Now that I don’t have to spend hundreds of hours on redoing IRS paperwork again and again, and running to the Secretary of State’s office to drop off filings, or researching how to do this or that, I have the time again to get back towards the community.  Both in terms of running events and in finding and training people to help replace board members and other staffers.  As secretary that is one of my roles and I will admit, I dropped the ball there.  I will admit, if I had to do it again I’d have gone through the same process, because the paperwork is important, but it doesn’t change the fact that those aspects of my duties suffered.  So I really, really want to start training more talent and helping grow and improve the group again.

    Thank you for taking the time to ask these questions Cence.  The secretary handles elections normally, but since I was up for election it was handed off, and I know there will be a review of handling this later and seeing how we can incorporate in the future.  If we make it a physical meeting, I’m going to encourage you to come!  Because your input is important.  ALL our member’s input is important.

    #29696 Quote
    QUESTIONS FOR EVERYONE RUNNING

    1) Who nominated you, and why did you accept the nomination? (This is a fairly straight forward question that I am certain the committee intends to ask anyway, perhaps the way I worded it will help outline the sincerity in the effort)
    – Drake M nominated me.   There was a group of us enjoying dinner and the board election came up.   We were all having a good time and I blurted out, “hey, if any of ya all want to, nominate me for the board elections”.   I was a bit surprised when I got emails and a phone call from Legonaire.   Yes, it was a passive statement I made but after talking to my husband, thinking about what it would mean, and talking to Legonaire on the phone, I decided to accept the nomination.

    2) For the duration of your term as a board member what do you bring to the organization that anyone else can not? If your intentions are to run for a position that gives you the ability to act upon the community at large (through a consensus of board members) what intentions do you plan to act upon that you could not accomplish by simply approaching a different board member?
    I don’t consider myself a ‘geek’.  I do not play video games, do not enjoy anime, do not play involved board games nor do I know more about my computer other than to turn it on.  The majority of my enjoyment of this fandom is with fursuits.  I’ve made a living making them by growing and maintaining a successful business.  Although the intention of our corporation is to bring others together, its also a responsibility to be financially solvent so more events can be planned in perhaps a bigger/better location than a Perkins restaurant.   I’m not saying that I’m out to bleed the community for money so we can have nicer events, but I am geared towards looking into possibilities to bring in more community pooled funds.

    3) MY PERCEPTION: There currently exists a social disparity between those who choose to meet at caribou coffee (on Saturday Bi-Weekly Meetings) and those who reside primarily at Perkins. I understand that this exists for a variety of reasons however none of them are professional. While one could attempt to cite “responsibility to oversee, Liability, or organizational basing” the underlying fact is that there has never been to this date a conflict at either location that requires administrative intervention. Further, the basis for the statement “The caribou gathering is not a MNFurs event” is largely personal. Of interest to the organization and its voting members it additionally has the following effects;
    a. It undermines organizational procedure
    b. It degrades membership values-
    c. Encourages clique sub-factions. (specifically those who aspire, are encouraged, or do
    (As a board member, what would you do with your term to rectify, change, or accommodate those across the street?)
    It is what it is.  The sole purpose of organizing open invite events is so people have a chance to meet others and make friends.  Not everyone gets along and its not everyone’s vision of ‘fun’ to sit in a crowded Perkins restaurant.  Caribou, Applebee’s, my house for poker the same night are all branches from the organized meet.   Without that initial effort, people may not have met the life long friends they have.   Who cares if people branch out and do their own thing?  Either way, its community members gathering because of the core intentions of the planned bi-weekly event.  As far as MNfurs having a responsibility to babysit those gathering at other places…  its not our responsibility.    The events that are planned, advertised and are implemented by a group member under the ‘MNfurs’ name ARE our responsibility to ensure they are ran smoothly and fairly to the establishment.    Those branching off represent themselves.

    4) Who’s interests, (if you are successful) do you think you are representing? Explanation: I am certainly very interested in voting for adequate representation within the MNFurs community. If you want to represent GPS, or another faction run for their board. I want to know that the people representing me are altruistically interested in promoting this community/chapter of the furry fandom and this question is designed to put you on record.
    Id be representing my interests.  I loved starting and growing Furbraska when I lived in Omaha.  It was the excitement of searching out new members and finding ways to involve others.  I know there are people sitting at home wishing to have more outlets to meet more furries.  I’m selfish in my desires to be on this board for that reason.  It makes me feel darn good to put in a bit of work so others can enjoy themselves.

    5) Who is the most handsome gray wolf you know?
    Im not a huge fan of dog types… perhaps if one had some kind of tiger stripes or leopard spots, I could be swayed.  (winky face entered here for intended sarcasm)

    QUESTIONS FOR CURRENT BOARD MEMBERS UP FOR RE-ELECTIONS
    –skipped–
    QUESTIONS FOR THOSE WISHIN TO FILL THE ROLE OF A BOARD MEMBER UP FOR RE-ELECT
    1) The candidates that are competing for a MNFurs board member slot are Krios, Takyoji and Snap E Cat (yes I wrote the whole thing out just for you fuzzy) This question is for Krios, and Takyoji. I do not know you. Never even remember hearing about you. What did you do to earn a nomination? What do you think you did to earn a nomination?
    –cool, another one I get to skip–

    2) Again for Krios and Takyoji When I attempt research, or ask around about you I can find no information at all. I am largely told “you’re the quiet kid who sits in the corner” In your defense please tell me a little bit about you, your visions for this group, and what you have done to qualify to represent me? Explanation : I do not want to elect a quiet or socially awkward candidate as a representative.. If I had my way, I want someone who is going to fight for this community and read green eggs and ham for 20+ hours to a committee if for no other reason than they feel they are representing the interest of the group. I don’t want someone who is going to get run over socially.
    –I’m on a roll–

    3) For Snap E Cat: I have watched you for years now, giving everything your able from your time to your skill to your resources. You work diligently to promote this community and again, from myself, I thank you. I also want to ask you the following;
    a. If you got elected, and could choose.. which one of the three current board members would you replace and why? Understand that they all fill very large shoes and although your feet are epic in proportion, I’m curious how you feel you could be MORE successful than the current team.
    First off..  Yah, I have been in the fandom for 16 years.  I have been on TV and am recognized for that quite a lot.  I also run a successful fursuit production business.    Just because I have some sort of recognizably in this fandom doesn’t mean I am a great person, would make a great board member, nor should it be a reason to vote for me or anyone else for that matter.
    well heck, this is being put on the spot but I am going to answer it.
    I love Kurst.  He does more work in this fandom than anyone I know personally.   He works HARD for the MNfurs board, Furry Migration and for the MNfurs website.  He worked his butt off getting a registration system ready for Furry Migration AND was the treasurer for the convention.  I run into him at conventions working dealer’s boothes.  As much as I respect him, I feel he may be spreading his time a bit thin.   If I did get his spot, I’m sure he will still be doing everything that he does currently but perhaps he can enjoy just a little bit more time to himself.   I am quite sure that if I replace Kurst, he still will be a member of the board in an invited position.

    4) Do you feel the current board is effective? If not, how would you change it aside from simply getting a spot on it?
    Absolutely.  The community has events, has money to put on picnics and has worked to establish and implement a successful convention.  The current board has people on it responsible for making this community what it is now.  Nothing but respect.

    Furry Migration Staff (Volunteers) & MNFurs Board Member.

    Posts on the MNFurs forums are of my own opinion and do not reflect that of MNFurs or chartered events unless otherwise stated.

    http://en.wikifur.com/wiki/Snap_E._Tiger

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