Below are highlights from the American Morgan Horse Association Board of Directors Second Quarter Meeting, which took place April 6, 2019, in Portland, Maine.
BYLAWS: Carol Fletcher, Committee Chair, reported on the recent activities of the Bylaws Committee. The Committee presented phase two of the Standard Operating Procedures project (SOP’s). A redline of the 2019 Directors’ guide that incorporated Standard Operating Procedures A1, A6, A7, A9, A11, A25, A34 and A36 was approved allowing the elimination of those SOPs since they are now listed within this AMHA document. In addition, it was determined that adherence to the Safe Sport policy would also added to the text of the Directors Guide. The Committee continues to review proper text to address attendance of directors at board meetings. The SOP project will continue at the next Bylaws Committee meeting with the continuing evaluation of the remaining SOPs.
REGISTRY: Committee Chair, C.A. Lee, III, gave the Registry report that included registry statistics that were on par at the same pace compared to 2018. The Registry Committee further reviewed Rule 3H regarding the number of name changes allowed per horse and decided to leave as currently written. The Broodmare Hall of Fame program was discussed and it was determined that the designation would be included on the online registry but would not be included on the actual registration certificate at this time due to the cost of software fees involved. Certificates will be issued to the 63 original BHOF designees as well as future achievers.
FINANCE REPORT: Vice President of Finance, Kate Kirsch provided the Finance Report. After the final audit by McSoley McCoy and Company, a surplus of $77,546.87 was recorded (much higher than the projected surplus of $15,000). It was noted that $42,000 of this surplus was already placed in the Rainy Day Fund as repayment toward the original Protech software loan. The Board determined that the remaining surplus be placed in the Rainy Day Fund in anticipation of replacing the computer server and possibly the phone system in the near future. The convention reported a profit of $3,671.47 and the AMHECT/WMF Stallion Service Auction reported a net profit of $42,126.87. Fund balances and year to date financials were also reviewed. The Finance Committee was tasked with reviewing the current compensation structure including benefits for AMHA employees in order to determine if it is in line, below, or above other similar sized organizations.
CENTRAL REGION MEETING: Per the request of members at the 2019 Annual Meeting of the Members held on February 8 in San Antonio, the Board began planning a meeting of the Central Region members for the purpose of removing director Vicki Bennett from her position. However, the quote received from Survey and Ballot Systems (tabulating company) outlined a total cost of nearly $15,000. Due to the extreme cost of such an endeavor, the Board felt it was their fiduciary responsibility to cease planning of such a meeting. A letter explaining their reasoning will be mailed to all central region members shortly.
MEETINGS AND CONVENTIONS: Lengthy discussion was held after reviewing extensive data and evaluating risk factors associated with the planning and hosting of the annual meeting/convention. At this time, the Board did not feel the financial risk of proceeding with the 2021 Convention in Las Vegas was something they could responsibly accept. Alternate options are being considered and more information will be provided as it is available. In addition, much thought was given to the current practice of hosting four “live” board meetings. Many have reported it as being a barrier to running for a regional director position due to cost, time away, limited vacation available, etc. Options to eliminate at least one of the live meetings were discussed and the appropriate committee has been tasked with planning the 2020 meetings accordingly.
HOME OFFICE: Executive Director Carrie Mortensen reported that the home office has been very busy since the last report at the Annual Meeting. Two Youth Consultants (Joyce Ackerman-Burroughs and Nicole Scovotti) have been retained to handle the AMHA Youth Programs and AMHA YOY Program respectively. Janet West (Registry) and Jennifer Whitecrane (Accounting) have moved on to other career opportunities. AMHA welcomed back Julie Dickie to the Registry Department and Carlson Management Consulting will be handling AMHA’s accounting services. Leadership attended the USEF Affiliate retreat in March and continues to participate in the Joint Leadership Council. Stephen Kinney, Editor of "The Morgan Horse" magazine was on hand to update the Board on the successful results of the Jan/Feb issue and discuss upcoming goals of the magazine.
AMHECT: The American Morgan Horse Educational Charitable Trust (AMHECT) held their First Quarter meeting and the Board is currently comprised of the following trustees: Mike Goebig (President), Carol Fletcher, C.A. Lee, III, Mari Sanderson, Terri Sturm, Steven Handy, Meredithe Bodnar, Teri Rumens, and Lyn Estell. The Trustees approved $2,106.34 (5 percent of 2019 Stallion Service Auction proceeds) to be used for 2019 Show Grants. They also approved $6,319.03 (15 percent) to be used for Regional Show support (plaques and other monetary support). 40 percent was incorporated into the World Morgan Futurity fund, leaving 40 percent for Marketing endeavors to be reviewed throughout the coming year. The 2018 AMHECT audit is currently underway under the direction of McSoley McCoy and Company and is expected to be completed by the end of May.
NATIONAL MUSEUM OF THE MORGAN HORSE: There has been a whirlwind of activity since the board’s February approval to host an exhibit of the National Museum of the Morgan Horse at Pineland Farms in New Gloucester, Maine. The Board got a sneak peek of the exhibit which is well underway. The final touches are still being completed and we hope to announce an official ribbon cutting toward the end of this summer! Read more about the exhibit in the individual “director” reports that follow below.
USEF RULE FORUMS: There will be rule forums at the Regional Horse Shows this year as proposals were submitted in time to USEF. The rule changes being proposed pertain to the addition of a Ranch Horse section into the Morgan Division rules of the USEF rulebook.
LEASE REVIEW COMMITTEE: Committee Chair, Terri Sturm, reported that she and President Mari Sanderson had met earlier in the week with the current landlord (Redstone) as well as a local Vermont realtor to begin researching options available once the current office lease expires in July 2020. The lease review committee is scheduled to meet in May to discuss further options.
MORGAN MEDALLION REGIONAL HORSE SHOW: The Board approved the change of date and venue for the Morgan Medallion Regional Horse Show which will now be held at South Point in Las Vegas, Nevada, July 18-21.
CALL FOR CANDIDATES FOR AMHA BOARD OF DIRECTORS: Remember that nomination forms are available (as of April 1) for those members that may be interested in running for the AMHA Board of Directors. Contact the executive director at the AMHA office to obtain the packet of materials via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Nomination forms are due Oct. 1, 2019.
QUARTERLY BOARD MEETINGS: The remaining live quarterly meetings are scheduled as follows:
The membership is reminded that they are always welcome to attend the Quarterly Board meetings in person or teleconference. Call-in information is provided via the global email newsletter prior to each meeting.
-- via AMHA