In Case You Missed It — USA Fencing Board of Directors Adopts Several Key Motions
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DENVER, Colo. — The USA Fencing Board of Directors met on the eve of the 2023 Junior Olympic Championships to welcome new members Aimee Rice and Darryl Jacobs and conduct important USA Fencing business. Among the day's key actions were the approval of the creation of the Grievance and Disciplinary Committee and the report and recommendations of the Y8-Y10-Y12 Working Group.
USA Fencing CEO Phil Andrews provided an update on Operations and Finances and offered an overview of the many accomplishments of the organization, including recently hosting the successful IWAS Wheelchair Fencing World Cup last month in Leesburg, Va., as well as significant progressive work occurring across USA Fencing, and addressing outcomes of recent membership surveys, club surveys, and USOPC audits.
Additionally, the following newly approved motions were set forth:
Creation of the Grievance and Disciplinary Committee. Updated Complaint and Hearing Procedures.
Process for removal of Treasurer, Vice-Chairs, and Chair.
Report and Recommendations of the Y8-Y10-Y12 Working Group.
CEO Policy and Board Readiness Plan
(Draft Minutes can be found here)
Creation of the Grievance and Disciplinary Committee and adoption of the Complaint and Hearing Procedures
USA Fencing Board of Directors has agreed to create a new committee known as the "Grievance and Discipline Committee," and gives them the authority to review and resolve complaints made by USA Fencing members or brought forward by USA Fencing itself.
In conjunction with the creation of this new committee, the Board of Directors also approved the adoption of new Complaint and Hearing Procedures which will provide operational procedures for the committee. The Board and USA Fencing recognize that our members have been subject to a complicated compilation of procedures and authorities for the resolution of complaints and we are hopeful that this will provide much-needed clarity. These changes, as a group, consolidate and simplify the authority and procedures for the resolution of complaints.
At their forthcoming board meeting scheduled for March 9, the Board will appoint 4 members of the group, which is proposed to include two independent individuals and two legally qualified individuals who may not be members of the Board. The USA Fencing Athlete Council will appoint the two athlete representatives to the group.
Reports to USA Fencing for conduct matters can be made via the form found here.
Process for removal of Treasurer, Special Board Members, and Chair:
The Board recommended for publication and comment from the membership new procedures for the removal of its Chair, Vice-Chair, and Treasurer. The approved bylaw amendments make clear that the person holding one of these positions is given an opportunity to address the Board before the vote to remove or replace is taken. The amendment also clarifies that the person holding the position of Chair of the Board of Directors is removed from their position, they continue to serve as an At-Large Director unless removed from the Board itself in compliance with Section 10.3 of these Bylaws and that in order to remove the Chair the subject must appear on the published agenda of the Board.
Similarly, under the proposed amendments to the bylaws, the Board of Directors will select their leader, the Chair, every two years at the Board’s annual meeting in odd-numbered years, therefore starting with the 2023 annual meeting.
As with all changes to USA Fencing bylaws, this one first enters a 45-day comment period before being enacted. Members of the community with questions or comments should contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Report and Approved Recommendations of the Y8-Y10-Y12 Working Group:
The Board has approved the working group’s recommendation to approve the formal addition of Y8 as an optional Regional and local level event starting with the 2023-24 season, and accepted the report of the group which will see USA Fencing propose a Children’s Bill of Rights as well as further educational efforts around appropriate youth sports pathways for parents, coaches and athletes alike.
CEO Policy and Board Readiness Plan:
USA Fencing approved a CEO Policy and Board Readiness Plan to ensure business continuity and the continued evolution of the organization, thus formalizing a guidebook and road map for both. As USA Fencing plans forward for eventual CEO succession and Board Member turnover, these policies are a first step on that road toward providing for a clear definition of expectations between USA Fencing's Board, the CEO and USA Fencing Staff.
At USA Fencing, we strive to give our members a seat at the table — ensuring that they have a powerful voice in the future of the fencing movement in the United States. “Our Board of Directors and USA Fencing members, including volunteer independents, play an incredibly integral role in our progression, and we thank them for their tireless and passionate work in helping USA Fencing achieve our vision and mission.” said Phil Andrews, USA Fencing Chief Executive Officer.
*All members who are interested in becoming involved in the USA Fencing Board of Directors, Commissions or Volunteer Groups are encouraged to email USA Fencing at: email@example.com.
Board Meeting Scheduled for March 9
Owing to time constraints, the full agenda could not be tackled during the Feb. 16 meeting, so a meeting has been called for March 9 at 5 p.m. MT/7 p.m. ET to address the balance of the agenda. Members will be able to see the agenda posted a minimum of five days ahead of time at www.usafencing.org/boardmeetings
If you wish to give feedback or have clarification questions on any matter discussed or decided, you can reach out to Phil Andrews, CEO at firstname.lastname@example.org or alternatively to David Arias, Chair at email@example.com