Older minutes are available to view upon request.
FSP Board Meeting Minutes
July 29, 2018
In attendance: Rachel, Jason, Matt, Rodger, Carla, Jeremy, Jessica
The meeting was called to order at 3:07 pm. The previous minutes were accepted with no objections, Jeremy abstained.
Rachel gave the executive report: Good increase in signers and the new website is doing well. Vince has been helping to build a new landing page for more A/B testing. Rachel reports about 25,000 signers and almost 5,000 Free Staters. There are plans to add those to the website, as well as the number of monthly meetups. Rachel reports that there were over 100 movers over the summer. Rachel is working to create a policy for accepting and transferring future crypto transactions. Regarding fundraising, PorcFest brought in some funds, and there are funds in CoinBase that are ready to be moved over. The board would like to see a grassroots push and more emphasis on recurring donations. Rachel reports that outreach is going well with several conference appearances lined up. Several speaking slots on various podcasts are lined up.
No treasurer’s report.
Regarding the board: NH state law requires at least five board members. There is discussion regarding interest in adding a 6th or 7th member. Current members will continue to consider qualified candidates as possible future board members but agree that there is no rush or requirement to add another. Jason will write an announcement for the website regarding Jeremy’s addition to the board. Also, possibly Rodger’s addition, if there was no previous announcement.
Bylaws change: Rodger has not yet followed up with specifics regarding his previous suggestion to have a board member voted in by the members of the body. Jason has concerns regarding the cost. Jeremy suggests trying it on a temporary basis before making the change to the bylaws.
Interim Executive Director: Jason showed interest in making a motion to drop “Interim,” making Rachel the permanent Executive Director. Matt so moved. Carla seconded. The motion passed 4-0, with Jeremy abstaining. Jeremy inquires about an official conflict of interest policy. Jason reports there is no policy because previous board members have been good about abstaining from any votes that would be a conflict of interest.
With no new business, the meeting adjourned with no objections at 4:40 pm.
FSP Board Meeting
Time/Date: 3:00p Sunday, April 22, 2018
Location: Carla’s house
Attending: Jason Sorens, Matt Philips, Rodger Paxton, Carla Gericke, Rachel Goldsmith, Steve Villee, and Jessica Paxton
Meeting called to order at 3:23 PM by Jason.
- Last meeting’s minutes
A motion to approve the previous meeting’s minutes was made by Rodger, seconded by Carla, passed unanimously.
- Executive Report
Rachel reports that our numbers are looking good. There was a bump in email subscribers thanks to the website overhaul. Mover numbers are increasing, with lots more in the pipeline for this summer. We are solid financially. Fundraising asks have begun. Rachel is building a deck in preparation for some big asks. Liberty Forum videos are all on YouTube and LBRY. We only have 60 days until PorcFest. We’re looking to expand advertising ideas, to avoid only advertising to the same people over and over. Jason will organize the student program again this year. Liberty Forum 2019 speaker asks are out. Liberty Forum will be in Manchester, Feb 7-10, 2019. The FSP has upcoming speaking slots at Libertopia, Startup Societies Summit, and Freedom Fest. For marketing: we have fresh new things for YouTube, and the weekly Facebook live video is doing well. Rachel is looking for new outlets to reach new groups of people. Rachel is looking for a summer intern to help with social media and related things. She is also looking for ways to count FSP successes in NH to add more measurable successes to the website.
- Treasurer’s Report.
Steve reports that we are in great shape. The bank balance after checks clear is $37,500, and we have another $2,000 in PayPal. Some Liberty Forum/PorcFest sponsorships are still in crypto.
- Old Business
- Board Slot: The board received notification of interest from Jeremy Kauffman and Will Coley. Jason would like a non-mover/NH native/local to join the board. Board members will contact a few more candidates and have a discussion through the email list about potential new board members.
- Participant Complaint Update: Jason plans to follow-up with the participant in question via email if he doesn’t see him in person at an event within the next week.
- Event Attendance Policy: Rodger made the following motion:
“Due to the public outcry of the Free State Project board banning individuals for having opinions that do not call for the initiation of violence, and the fact that the minutes taken by the secretary on record at the time of the vote to disinvite Ian from FSP events recorded that vote as banning him only for a single year, and that it has been more than one year from that vote, I propose that the FSP Board of Directors lift the ban on Ian Freeman at Free State Project events.”During the discussion of the motion, Matt says that the original decision was purely advisory and that he believed the vote was a measure of consensus rather than making a policy. Carla clarified that she understood that individual was not banned, but was uninvited. Motion dies for lack of a second. Jason says there are no plans to address the policy on a board-level at this time.
- New Business
Rodger made the following motion:
“Due to many years of accusations from FSP participants of a lack of transparency by the FSP Board of Directors, I propose that we do what similar organizations have done in the past and make our email communications public. This would be restricted to all emails to the email address email@example.com.”
During the discussion, Rodger clarified that this would cover email communication from now forward, and would not include older emails, and there would still be a private email list for executive session discussions. Carla raised concerns about oppositional forces having access to the board’s communications. Matt felt that releasing the board’s communications would be unnecessary and potentially problematic since old and new records would be in two different places.
The motion was seconded by Jason and passed 3-1.
- Proposed bylaws change
Rodger submitted the following:
“Due to many years of claims of non-representation from FSP participants on the FSP Board of Directors, I propose that the board be comprised of a minimum of 40% of the members of the body to be selected by the participants of the Free State Project. This would require a bylaws change and a vote of three-fourths of the board. The proposed bylaw change is:
A minimum of 40% of Directors must be selected by a majority of the votes cast by Free State Project participants. Other Directors shall be elected by two-thirds of the Directors. Any new Director must:
-have signed the Statement of Intent, and
-continue to actively and substantially contribute to the operation of the organization through leadership, execution, donations, fundraising, advising, and/or education.
During the discussion, Rodger said he believed this change would diversify the board and give participants a louder voice. Jason warned that there could be considerable cost involved in contacting all participants by mail. Carla believes this is not necessary, and that the board should instead make a more active, public effort to recruit new board members, and that if this were to pass, that voters should be only in-state participants. Matt brought up the legalities regarding voting and whether that would legally make our participants “members” instead. Jason suggests tabling this issue to discuss further via email.
Jason made a motion to adjourn, Rodger seconded, and with no objections, the meeting adjourned at 6:29 pm
FSP Board Meeting
January 21, 2018
In attendance: Matt Philips, Rodger Paxton, Steve Villee, Jason Sorens, Carla Gericke, Rachel Goldsmith, Jessica Paxton
The meeting was called to order at 3:13 by Jason.
Previous meeting’s minutes unanimously approved.
Rachel gave the executive’s report. Cryptowoo is now an option for purchases on the shop page, giving buyers the ability to pay with multiple forms of crypto. Rachel plans to tour the state doing mini State of the Free State talks in various regions, updating them and encouraging them to donate. There are plans to invite students to Liberty Forum. PorcFest planning is underway. Rachel is working to find outreach events for speaking and sponsorship swaps. The new website is about six weeks from launch, and Mary is doing amazing things. Lindsay is doing fantastic work on the Free Stater magazine. Currently looking for more platforms to develop because Facebook is increasingly difficult to use without paying for content to be sponsored. Strategically, Rachel plans to work towards revitalizing our presence online and increase brand-awareness both nationally and in-state, and increase monthly donors.
Steve gave the treasurer’s report. The 1099 spreadsheet was sent the accountant. Steve is working on gathering the documents to start an Uphold account. The annual statement is in progress and should be complete by the end of January.
Carla made a motion to accept Dave Butler and Rich Goldman’s resignations. Seconded by Rodger. Passed with no objections. The President thanks Dave and Rich for their years of loyal service to the FSP and wishes them the best in their future endeavors.
In old business, Carla made a motion to accept the 2018 budget, Seconded by Rodger, unanimously passed. Jason suggests increasing the advertising budget, depending on how fundraising efforts go.
In new business, the board received a complaint about a participant who seemed to advocate violence on Facebook. Jason agreed to talk to the individual in question to ask whether he does, in fact, advocate violence. Rachel wants to look into an event attendance policy.
Jason made a motion to adjourn. Rodger seconded the motion. Hearing no objections, the meeting adjourned at 5:10 pm.
FSP Board Meeting
December 17, 2017
In attendance: Matt Philips, Rodger Paxton, Jason Sorens, Carla Gericke, Rachel Goldsmith, Jessica Paxton
The meeting was called to order at 3:40 pm by Jason Sorens.
Matt Philips verbally submitted his resignation and suggested promoting Rachel Goldsmith to Executive Director.
Jason made a motion to both accept Matt’s resignation and to promote Rachel to Interim Exec Director. Carla seconded the motion. The board unanimously voted to pass the motion. The board thanked Matt for his dedicated service and support. Matt will continue to remain a board member.
Jason made a motion to adjourn. Rodger seconded the motion. Hearing no objections, the meeting adjourned at 3:52 pm.
FSP Board Meeting
Time/Date: Sunday, July 16, 2017, 3:00pm
Location: Murphy’s Taproom Boardroom, Manchester
Attending: Matt, Jason, Rich (remote), Dave, Christine, Jessica, Rodger, Rachel Meeting called to order at 3:09 pm by Jason.
- April 2017 meeting’s minutes adopted with no
- Secretary: After discussing the scope of the secretary’s duties, Dave made a motion to elect Jessica Paxton as secretary. Seconded by Rich, the motion passed with no
- President’s Report: Outreach calls are gearing up after pausing for PorcFest. A recent substantial BTC donation was received. The brand overhaul project will kick off early August. Christine Butler is coming on as Events Director and is currently looking for Liberty Forum 2018 producers. Christine will also be covering for Rachel during Rachel’s maternity leave. Porcfest attendance was lower than in 2016, but the post-event survey showed a 92% satisfaction rate. PorcFest producers for 2018 have been procured, with the announcement coming soon. Matt will attend several upcoming liberty events and conferences to speak and/or network with attendees and potential future FSP event
- Treasurer’s Report: Fundraising needs to be ramped up. Emmett is currently looking for a new treasurer but will stay until a replacement is
- Old Business
- Bylaws amended. Motion made by Rodger and seconded by Dave and passed with no objections. Amendments include removing the office of Vice President, modernizing the description of the Secretary’s responsibilities, clarifying emergency meeting protocol, and clarifying the “significant contribution” expected from the board
- Discussion about recognizing Seamus and Jody at Liberty
- 2017 budget presented by Matt. Discussion of specific line items. Motion to adopt budget made by Dave, seconded by Rodger, and passed with no
- President’s KPIs: Discussion about more clearly defining quantitative measurements. Jason recommends revisiting the KPIs to include hard numbers at a later
- Motion to adjourn made by Rich, seconded by Dave and passed with no objections at 4:33 pm.
FSP Board Meeting
Time/Date: 3:00p Sunday, April 23, 2017
Location: Carla’s House & Online
Attending: Matt, Jason (remote), Carla, Dave (remote), Rich (remote), Rachel, Christine (remote), Rodger
Meeting called to order at: 15:03 by Jason
- Last meeting’s minutes: accepted without objection
- President’s Report (see below)
- Discussion of Carla’s role moving forward. Carla set expectations that she prefers to gradually reduce her level of engagement.
- Mover outreach discussion – strategies for optimizing marketing funnel
- Multiple discussion points around the increasing perception of progress and communication – Matt to take this as an action
- Treasurer’s Report.
- Continuing to ramp up on new Quickbooks software & consulting with an accountant
- Voted by e-mail to confirm Rodger Paxton
- Christine Butler stepping down as Secretary, taking on new events role (TBD)
- Secretary position to be filled pending offline discussion
- Discussion of revisions to Bylaws
- Old Business
- Follow-ups on recognition for past board members Jody & Seamas
- Gifts (Matt has action)
- Former board members will receive VIP upgrades (similar to Event Stars)
- Follow-ups on recognition for past board members Jody & Seamas
- New Business
- Discussion of 2017 budget – Matt to distribute to the board for discussion offline
- Liberty Forum – discussion around finalizing dates & venue to facilitate ticket sales at PorcFest.
- PorcFest – ~280GA, 80 children, 30 VIP sold at this point (lower than historical)
- Plan to increase social media marketing and publishing incremental event schedules & updates
- Discussion of establishing KPIs for President – specifics to be discussed via e-mail prior to next meeting
- Discussion to begin identifying someone to cover Rachel’s duties while she is unavailable Aug/Sep (specific dates TBD)
Jason adjourned without objection at 17:00
Free Staters: 277 pre-vote-residents + 1894 movers + 2636 in-state-friends = 4807
- Carla will be volunteering ongoing as an advisor, mentor, PR, etc. and of course as a board member.
- Outreach: 1500+ phone calls, connecting with ~10%
- Fundraising: recruited Reason’s development director to advise.
- Brand Reboot: have web dev, graphic design, awaiting final ok from the agency.
- Surveys: see Signer Survey analysis.
- Welcome Wagon: one meeting and one mover (at least) in each region.
- Leadership Training: launching after PorcFest.
Liberty Forum 2017
After the wild success of LF16, we knew this year’s event would be smaller due to a variety of factors, incl. not having Snowden, not being immediately post-trigger, and not even being sure we wanted to do the event at all. When given the choice of shoehorning into the expo side of the Radisson at a huge discount, we took it and planned all along for a smaller, more intimate event. Given all that, the event was a success, with almost 300 attendees. Thank you to the Event Star herself, Christine Butler, for stepping up to take the reins two weeks before, and to all the volunteers who worked before, during, and after.
- Tickets sales somewhat below historical.
- McAfee cancelled due to his board requiring his presence in the UK during the entire week of PF. Awaiting confirmation of verbal agreement from two replacements.
- ISFLC 2/17-19 (http://www.isflc.org) – Rachel went.
- Anarchapulco 2/25-28 (https://anarchapulco.com) – I went.
- LSLA 5/28 – they requested a panel from us
- FEECon 6/19 – Jason’s speaking
- FreedomFest 7/19-22 (http://freedomfest.com) – Exec team has discussed the level of participation given low turnout and heavy cross-scheduling for official speaking slots. Either cocktail hour or just purely guerilla style. Still an important networking event.
- NHLA Gala 7/16
FSP Board Meeting
Time/Date: 3:00p Sunday, January 29, 2017
Location: Carla’s House & Online
Attending: Matt, Jason (remote), Carla, Dave (remote), Rich (remote), Rachel, Christine (remote)
Meeting called to order at: 15:08 by Jason
- Last meeting’s minutes: Accepted without objections
- President’s Report
- Discussion around modifying Carla’s compensation model to hourly based on an estimate of between 10-16hrs per week
- Discussion of perceived positive increase in social media frequency
- Discussion of challenges around contacting signers. We now have Kristine Boncer trained and ready to begin work. Approximately 800 calls have been made to date by prior volunteers.
- Most Welcome Wagon leads are in place. Discussion around asking Ken & Carolyn Urbanski to assist with Monadnock Valley.
- Discussion of NH GOP (chair?) mention of Free Staters & FSP in her stump speeches.
- Discussion of reaching out to various groups across NH who have voiced objections or criticisms of Free Staters & the FSP to try to bridge the philosophical gap and build new relationships
- Treasurer’s Report.
- The report provided immediately prior to meeting – board members should review offline and send questions to Matt.
- The plan needed to liquidate/write-off merchandise
- Fundraising plan will be in the works after Liberty Forum
- Discussion around recognition & potential gift ideas for Seamas possibly to be presented at the “State of the Free State” talk at Liberty Forum
- Board member additions have been considered. There has been some difficulty in identifying interested individuals, and those who have been contacted have not expressed interest
- Old Business
- Amendments to Bylaws: Plan to review offline, consolidate recommendations, then organize a vote.
- New Business
- Movers Survey feedback
The report clearly shows the importance of an enhanced level of communication with both visitors and new movers
To a large extent, a new mover’s perception of the community as a whole is informed by the groups local to the new mover. It is important to ensure diverse and frequent regional/local meetups & activities are taking place.
Some discussion around the new “New Mover’s Party” being set up at Area 23 and objections that this may interfere with the current Quill-based NMP. The consensus was that more NMPs and similar events are needed across the state despite any possible negative impact on existing events as the overall effect would be very positive.
To address some of the concerns around government and drama, the FSP leadership can reach out to various groups that are philosophically opposed to the goals of the FSP to bridge the gap.
There were also ideas proposed to amplify our marketing around the positive impact that FSP participants have already made and are continuing to make across NH.
Proposal to cross-promote existing non-FSP NH events (Christian Rock concert, NASCAR, festivals, outdoor events, etc.) as the report showed that visiting NH is a critical component of the mover’s decision-making process. PorcFest & Liberty Forum are still important vehicles for engaging and attracting new movers, but we need to branch out and diversify our efforts.
Many survey respondents identified that they felt they had missed out on certain areas/events/etc., during their visit. Ideas were proposed around helping visitors focus & time their visit to ensure they receive the maximum value from the trip.
Discussion around two primary difficulties for new movers: “Physically moving”, and “Making new friends”. Proposal to explore increasing the level of assistance the FSP (or a related/connected organization since this is not part of the FSP charter) can provide to potential new movers around housing and employment. Diversifying the New Mover’s Parties and helping guide other regions on best practices around setting up regular, recurring meetups and events were also discussed.
- Discussion of possible future “Event Coordinator” role to ensure continuity and consistency in our existing events as well as providing a solid foundation to build new events around.
- Discussion of Liberty Forum 2018 potentially co-promoting with another organization such as Mises Circle to create a combined event, or if not combined, at least realize some synergies between the events & organizations.
- Discussion of redefining “Free Stater”, clarifying or removing the distinction between movers and “pre-staters”. Some feedback had been received that those participants who already lived in NH prior to the FSP perhaps felt left out of the movement because they were not counted in our numbers. This topic will require further consideration, including a possible update to the SoI.
- Discussion of whether or not to continue focusing on the number of signers. It was agreed that there is no realistic way to ensure 100% accuracy due to the voluntary nature of reporting, moves in and out of state, dropouts, deaths, etc. However, it was agreed that although we should likely combine all people aligned with the FSP in the total count for marketing purposes, we should also do our best to retain statistical distinctions (such as the mover number) for record keeping purposes.
Jason adjourned without objection at 16:23
FSP Board Meeting
Time/Date: 3:00p Sunday, July 24, 2016 Location: Carla’s house
Attending: Carla, Jody, Matt, Rich (tele), Séamas, Dave Butler Meeting called to order at: 3:20 pm
- Decided to vote to admit Dave as a board member first, which was Carla made the motion to accept David Butler as a new board member, Séamas seconded. Unanimous in favor. He joined the meeting.
- Séamas sent a financial report for the first half of 2016. We have about $117K in cash. The final results aren’t complete yet for PorcFest but it looks like we will run a fairly large We should discuss how this can be avoided in the future (or reasons to absorb a deficit). One thing that will change for the rest of the year is that Carla will be working 1/2 time so that cost will go down by 50%.
- Séamas recently reviewed with Emmett how these reports get The transition is going well.
- President’s Report
- The first report sent since Matt has been president! He promises a monthly report
- The report is at the end of the
- Jody resigning. Presents and thanks were
- Dave Butler joined as a new board member
- Séamas resigning as Treasurer, Emmett assuming office. Nothing new
- New Secretary. Jody moved to appoint Christine Butler as secretary (officer, na ot board member), Carla seconded. Vote was
- Old Business
- What is the mission of the FSP? The rebranding process will help us firmly identify our post-trigger mission.
- Future of Liberty Forum and PorcFest. Setting up an LLC for PorcFest to hold assets and
- Reflection on the decision to ban Ian Freeman from FSP events
- New Business
- Amend Bylaws to:
- remove the office of Vice President
- modernize description of Secretary responsibilities
- clarify emergency meeting protocol
- clarify “significant contribution” expected from board members
- Amend Bylaws to:
Starting in September, I will be sending a shorter monthly version and then a summary version several days in advance of the next board meeting.
- HubSpot – Ready next week. Training Chris Lopez next week. Will start recruiting for more salespeople. This has taken longer than expected for a variety of reasons. Now outreach will begin for all signers and donors, mostly by phone, to inform them that we triggered the move, find out when they expect to move, and also do fundraising. Should be seasoned movers who understand how things work, not new movers, can be done from
- Brand Reboot: As planned, now that PF is past, work on this will begin this next month (August).
- Sales: Chris Lopez has been joined by two volunteers who together are mapping out everything she does so they can assist with some or all of it, and preparing for the Constituent Outreach project once HubSpot is implemented. Will be looking for more volunteers as we ramp
- Volunteers: Rhonda is our new volunteer coordinator – doing basically what she does for PF (identifying and tracking volunteers) but for Website form coming soon, for now email volunteer at freestateproject org.
- Carla is still writing for the FSP blog, and managing social media, and generally acting as President Emeritus. Her salary (as budgeted) is down to half for the second half of the
- Marketing Lead: will begin actively recruiting for this person later this month. This is separate from the brand reboot. This person will pay attention to all the social media accounts and make sure posts are written and
LP Nat’l Convention
I attended, FSP paid for flight but did not sponsor. The only person I met who hadn’t heard of FSP was Bill Weld, who refused to sign. Gov. Johnson recounted to me (in front of news cameras) that he actively attempted to recruit FSP to select New Mexico instead of New Hampshire in 2002! Presidential candidate Darryl Perry acquitted himself well in the debates and the voting. VP candidate Will Coley (long-time PorcFest vendor) also did well. McAfee has yet to come up to NH but I’m sure we’ll get him for an event next year (his running mate Judd Weiss is a personal friend and big supporter of FSP).
- Overall was very
- Still finalizing the budget. We spent more money than we made again, probably on par with last
- Wrap-up post will be published this week.
- Attendance matched last year almost exactly: about
- Most of the feedback was positive. The ‘vibe’ was ‘chill’ which made it seem less well-attended. Many long-time attendees said it was either the best or in the top three
- I spoke to several headliners and sponsors at FreedomFest and they all said they had a great time and many plan on attending again next year (e.g. Matt Welch will bring his family).
- Thank you to Kristin Weitzel for again lead
- The Butlers were clutch. They really helped out, and having them allowed me by Wednesday to be needed very little for anything except shmoozing and talking to the
- Thank you to the lead coordinators, and to all the volunteers, without whom we would have no
- Sponsors: Rachel did a fantastic job, and will continue to foster the relationships for next
- We will have a debrief with the lead coordinators in the next two weeks but there are several ideas for improving next year, including shortening the event to Wed-Sat and further reducing the number of officially-produced tracks. The dates are almost identical next year, and will be published this Many of the lead coordinators have indicated interest in returning again. We will encourage regional groups to have early-in-the-week activities.
- We got a ton of great press, including Kathleen Ronayne’s AP article that got picked up nationally. (Will publish full list in the wrap-up this )
FSP sponsored at a discounted rate of (due to cross-promotion). Again very few attendees had never heard of FSP, those who hadn’t were mostly older, conservative, Republican types. The tables/booths were not well trafficked (the CES straw poll only had 80 ballots out of over 2k attendees). Thanks to Brandon Navom who spent quite a bit of time at the table and reported some outreach but not much. Carla’s talk was very well attended (~50), due I suspect in part to both Austin Peterson and also far more exciting topic. Hardly anyone who wasn’t already associated attended mine, partly b/c it’s old hat for most now, and also cross-scheduled against Nick Sarwark of LP and Reason talks. I am already thinking about how to do it much differently next year, including perhaps doing a hospitality suite instead of sponsoring. They are expecting much larger attendance next year, in part due to it being their 10th anniversary and also William Shatner will be keynoting (that famous libertarian).
Other Upcoming Events
- Freecoast Fest: Exploring cross-sponsorship.
- LibertyFestNYC: Will probably attend. Unclear value, although NYC is the top city for Facebook
- Voice & Exit (http://www.voiceandexit.com): This November 11-13 in Austin, Texas. Discussing with Max and Seth about putting together a panel talk on escapist projects under their Future Cities Forum program track. Not sure yet what level sponsorship, if any.
- Anarchapulco: coordinating with Jeff Berwick to avoid cross-scheduling. I’d like to go, not sure about sponsorship.
- Liberty Forum: Radisson is renovating the conference and banquet area in February, waiting to hear back from them if they can Will explore the Crowne Plaza again. Jason and I decided that due to timing and financing, the FSP will do it again this year, albeit targeting a smaller attendance.
Carla moved to adjourn, Séamas seconded. Unanimous. Meeting adjourned at: 5:09 pm.
FSP Board Meeting
Time/Date: 3:00p Sunday, April 17, 2016
Attending: Carla, Jason, Jody, Matt, Rich (tele), Séamas Meeting called to order at: 3:09 pm
- Choose meeting chair
Séamas nominated Jason, seconded by Rich, all in favor
- Treasurer’s Report
$216k in the bank. We received an anonymous donation for $180k. We’re in good shape. Considerations for a new treasurer. Séamas plans to step down as treasurer on August 1, 2016.
- President’s Report
- TTM: We triggered the move on Feb 3, About 100 people at the press conference, including several national media outlets. Over $6M in media placement value Dec ‘15-March ‘16, including stories in WSJ and New York magazine.
- LF: Huge success with record attendance (600+), most sponsors to date, good media coverage, and made a $15K+
- Free Stater Magazine appeared to be well received. Have extra copies, which will be used for VIP bags at FP XIII and can be mailed to signers/donors. Need to decide if will continue with this or possibly spin out as a private project. Will add PDF
- ISFLC: Good networking. Panel discussion had about 30-40 people in
- Fundraising: Raised $14,575 USD by 162 people online for TTM prior to the announcement, stopped promoting afterward, approx. $2-3K offline, including some matching pledges. Received a check from an anonymous donor for $180,000 in late Feb.
- Assumed office March 1st, 2016. Again, much thanks to Carla for her stewardship in the last five years.
- Brand Reboot: received an RFP response to a not-yet-existent RFP that gives a good idea of what might be involved. Will solicit other bids before deciding, probably not until after PF (as originally planned).
- HubSpot – implementation proceeding slowly with help from George Lambert, after a period of distraction for the whole team with TTM, LF, ISFLC, I expect better progress in the next month.
- Sales: Chris Lopez has been joined by two volunteers who together are mapping out everything she does so they can assist with some or all of it, and preparing for the Constituent Outreach project once HubSpot is implemented. Will be looking for more volunteers as we ramp
- Volunteers: Rhonda is our new volunteer coordinator – doing basically what she does for PF but for FSP. Website form coming soon, for now, email volunteer at freestateproject org
- Carla is still writing for the FSP blog, managing social media, and generally acting as President Emeritus.
- Newsletter/email: Carla is writing a special newsletter to include TTM, LF, and PF that we will send to the regular newsletter subscribers, and then assuming we get HubSpot up soon, will be sent in batches to all participants (as part of the Constituent Outreach project).
- Marketing Lead: will begin actively recruiting for this person later this
- Most of last year’s volunteer team has returned, with several new
- Kristin reprises her producer role, Dave Butler is co-producing, and Gloria Leustek is assistant- producer-in-training.
- Planning is mostly on
- Sponsors: Rachel is doing a great FFF, AFPF, and SFL are sponsoring. SFL is obligated to provide some speakers but has not yet come through.
- Ticket sales have slowed since LF, which is normal. Facebook advertising will start once the schedule is
- We have good music booked, nighttime entertainment/parties are looking
- Aaron resigned
We all thank him for his service and wish him well.
- New Board members
Considering a few people. We currently have language in the bylaws that requires a significant monetary donation. Discussed changing the requirement to be either that or a significant contribution that doesn’t have to be monetary. We will continue over email to get the language right for the bylaws. Rich will draft language.
- Elect new Board Chair
Séamas moved that Jason become Chair and Carla become VP. Rich seconded. Passes 4-0, with 2 abstentions.
- New Business
- Amend Bylaws to clarify emergency meeting protocol Rich will draft
- What is the mission of the FSP?
Discussion about whether the mission turns to education or recruiting 20,000 movers.
- Future of Liberty Forum and PorcFest
Brainstormed a number of ideas. Will have a daylong brainstorm with volunteers and organizers and other interested people. Considering licensing/transferring LF to E3NE (Jason’s org) for next year. Will get a proposal in the next couple of weeks and decide over email.
- FTL/Ian Freeman
The following is a summary of how the decision was made:
On March 4, 2016, the FSP board, at Matt’s request, began deliberating via email and telephone about Ian Freeman, due in part to a petition calling for the FSP to end its sponsorship relationship with Free Talk Live and letters from the FSP community, including core doers, asking the FSP to disassociate from Ian Freeman. On 3/17, the board unanimously recommended to end the “Mutual Sponsorship Agreement” between the FSP and FTL; and following four expressions of support for banning Ian from attending FSP- hosted events, Matt posted the statement.
- Agenda items for next meeting
- Change bylaws to reflect requiring a board member to make a significant contribution that doesn’t have to be
- Amend Bylaws to clarify emergency meeting protocol. Meeting adjourned at: 5:40 pm
FSP Board Meeting
Time/Date: Sunday, Jan 17, 2016
Attending: Aaron, Carla, Séamas (via phone), Jason (via phone), Jody, Matt Excused: Rich (mazeltov!)
Meeting called to order at: 2:02 pm Agenda
- Treasurer’s Report. $42k in the bank, including $11k from TTM fundraiser, $1,100 final proceeds from PF, plus $23k in PayPal for LF. 2015 financials were sent via email.
- President’s Report
- Fundraising: $12,330 USD, raised by 124 people in 30 days, 31% of $40,000 goal. More small donors recently. Fundraising will continue for the 2016 budget, Phase II: 20,000
- TTM: Target Feb 2. Organizing a press conference, plus shindig for
- LF: Going well. Ahead of reg and sponsors compared to last
- PF: Matt will be stepping into the president oversight role. Will start selling tickets along with TTM announcement. Hoping to break 2000 attendee mark. TTM
- Board Member Search: still considering Matt will send us a list of criteria.
- New Business
- Matt will be stepping into president role starting right after LF, will be announced during LF.
- Aaron made a motion: Matt Philips will succeed Carla Gericke as President of the FSP effective March 1st, 2016. Carla will assume the title President Emerita. Carla seconds. Motion carried unanimously.
- Statement from Matt: “Carla is owed a debt of gratitude that only the Imprimatur of History can adequately We shall honor her by following her example of giving the maximum possible effort for history to witness that liberty in our lifetime.”
- Budget 2016: Aaron made the motion to approve the 2016 budget, Jason Motion carried unanimously.
Meeting adjourned at 3:12 PM. A record!
FSP Board Meeting
Time/Date: Sunday, November 8
Location: 63 Durette Court, Manchester
Attending: Aaron, Matt, Seamas, Jason, Jody, Carla, Rich (on phone) Meeting called to order at 10:31 am
1. President’s Report. At end of the minutes.
2. Treasurer’s report.
a. We have $42,500 in cash (after outstanding checks). We’ll be receiving $7,500 soon, bringing us to
$50k. We have a pledge for the $2,000 to complete the $25k matching fund, which will show up in 2016.
b. We’ve gone a little over the web and email ads budget item, so we need to raise the budgeted amount, especially because these are working very well and we have enough funds to cover it without reducing other line items. With current sign-up rates, we estimate to need about $35,000 to trigger the move, but some of this will be in next year’s budget. Seamas moved that we raise the budget from
$2,500 to $15,000 for this year. Carla seconded. Unanimous in favor.
c. Seamas moved that we raise travel and lodging budget to $6,000 from $2,500. Jason seconded. We have overspent a little, and there are some outstanding bills. We raised it for just-in-case expenses. Unanimous in favor.
3. Porcfest. We still owe Crosby $38,000. The amount is covered through a donation. Need to determine what to do differently so we don’t go over like this again. Increased spending was due to portable showers, professional AV, filming, while we were under on sponsorships. We’re hoping to target next year for triggering the move, so that should generate more interest. Tickets will go on sale before LF and will start at $55 next year. Think about sponsoring students, though we’ve tried and it hasn’t worked very well before. Need a volunteer to manage it. Maybe for LF and not PF.
4. New Business
a. 5 year plan. Matt will focus on the digital market piece of it over the next couple of months. This should be an item on the TTM check list. Triggering the move, supporting the movers, have an admin system in place. Also, what is the future of the FSP after the 5 year mover deadline?
b. Board Composition.
• Proposed to meet quarterly and schedule the meetings for the next year, and not at LF and PF. Sundays 3pm. Jan 17, April 17, July 24, Oct 23. Carla will additionally send monthly reports. Aaron will send notification with all those dates.
• Start to bring new people onto the board soon so we can start thinking about succession plans. Carla will send an email to start the conversation about who to nominate, along with criteria.
c. Board communications. We will try using Do.com to share agendas, and Slack for managing board communication.
1. Liberty Forum 2016, “Living Liberty”: Planning meetings take place every other Thursday 6-8PM at the Quill in Manchester. Meeting regularly has 20+ people. Emmett and Angela have put together a project management Google Planning site where we are tracking progress. Lead team organizers have been identified in different roles, working to build teams under them, set projects goals, etc.
The theme is “Living Liberty” and we will be highlighting projects early movers are working on, focusing on breakout sessions, and creating more opportunities for networking (e.g., offsite lunches categorized according to topics like “BTC,” “School Choice,” etc.).
For the Sponsor/Exhibitor we will be creating a “Town Square” in the Armory (the large room where we had keynotes last time). This dynamic space will host sponsors, exhibitors, family play area, art area, “Hyde Park corner,” a Jobs Fair, etc. New mover Rachel Goldsmith is lead sponsor coordinator. Where we need help is targeting/using relationships with think tanks.
Confirmed out-of-state speakers: Roger Stone, author of Nixon’s Secrets Alex McCorbin, SFL
Library Freedom Project (crew from Boston who worked on the Tor stuff)
Matt will be approaching the president of Uber and Mark Sisson. I will be reaching out to Cheech and Chong (who have ties to NH and have been working on MJ reform). Seth Godin declined.
New in 2016:
a. Celebrity Skype Ins, with audience Q&As. For this, we will be/have approached: Penn Jillette, Ron Paul, Edward Snowden, Glenn Greenwald, Virginia Postrel (she declined to travel here), and Drew Carey.
b. Awards Ceremony on Saturday night. The goal is to start honoring the folks in-state who are making a difference for liberty or who have made a significant contribution to the FSP’s success. We are currently looking for a lead. Master of Ceremonies will be Andre Rosa. I want this event to be an upscale/red carpet. Think: The Academy presents The Oscars…. so The Free State Project presents… The Prickles? We will have different categories and will be seeking nominations, and then asking people to vote, with veto override for a steering committee (e.g., if one person wins everything, we can make sure to spread the love). There will be a winner in each category and 2 runners’ up. Winner gets a tangible award.
c. “IRL: In Real Life, Love, and Liberty”: 20-minute TED-like talks by New Hampshiremen, whether early movers or locals (think: Dean Kamen, Dyn etc.). If you would like to do one or have a recommendation, let me know.
d. QR Codes at every talk for instant survey/feedback.
Below is a summary of Liberty Forum 2016 goals and constraints: Goals:
a. Primary – Achieve an overall participant satisfaction rating of at least 8 on a survey scale of 1 (poor) to 10 (excellent)
– Meet or exceed prior year SOI signings of 44
– Meet or exceed prior year purchased tickets of 376
– Maintain total attendance of at least 500
– Planning tasks must be completed prior to the event start date of February 18, 2016
– Event costs will not exceed the total budgeted expense amount of $64.5K
– Event costs will not exceed event revenue
More than $6,000 in ticket sales have already been collected.
1. PorcFest 2016: Still need final budget and wrap up report from 2015 (waiting for Matt’s meeting with Crosby). Kick-off meeting for 2016 held with Gloria and Robert Leustek. Access given to pages,
information, etc. Tim Bauman is “shadowing” the LF meetings with the goal that a similar planning structure can be used for PF (why reinvent the wheel, especially since it mostly the same volunteers who overlap between the two events). Plan to start selling tickets before Liberty Forum. Themes: “Trigger the Move” (or “Triggered!”) or “Be the Free You Want to See.”
2. Fundraising: Filming a fundraising appeal ad on Sunday. Goal is to get moving/inspiring media to link to Kickstarter campaign. Received $5,000 from AFP Foundation for Facebook ads aimed at getting more signers. Initial $2,000 was contingent on good results, and they upped the second donation from
$2,000 to $3,000. Sent the metrics to other potential sponsors. With the new Facebook call to action button (which directs to the new landing page) and reports, I’m confident we can raise the money needed to secure the last signers quickly.
3. Upcoming events: “Spoke” at SFL’s Harvard event in Boston 10/17, got 2 signers, but turnout was
<20. Matt has identified and is attending some events outside scope of pure “liberty.” Should be doing more of this. Doing a Liberty.me ask about the FSP on Monday with Denis Goddard and Andrew Criscione. Wondering whether it might be worth approaching Freedom Fest to see whether we can do an in-kind trade like we did with SFL?
4. Friends of the FSP Outreach/Ambassador program: Jason hosted town hall in West Lebanon & Keene. Not sure when next one is scheduled. Still need to finalize and make materials to hand out to local “friends” to sign up.
5. Newsletter: Kristine Boncer will be cycling off as editor in December. Looking for replacement. James Davis is interested.
6. Free Stater Magazine: Seeking a project manager for 4th edition, which will drop concurrent with Liberty Forum (need place for ads to go because doing same name badge with program). Designer is lined up (Lindsay Dean). Seeking submissions. Mary Sorens might be interested in project manager position.
7. Social Media: Matt is spearheading weekly-ish Hangouts which started 7/22. Facebook has more than 80,000 likes now. Twitter 68,000. Since losing Franz as most active poster, things have been slower on Twitter, but Randy Clemens is stepping into gap.
8. Facebook Ads: Working closely with Vince Perfetto on this. I sent an email to you last week outlining what we have done so far. Based on a month-long test run of several different ads targeted at different audiences, our acquisition cost is between $7.50-$23.00 per signer. Will continue to run ads, using Americans For Prosperity Foundation funds, donations specifically allocated to this, and we should consider and vote on allocating more general funds, budget permitting.
9. Adwords: Gave material for gun- and school choice-specific pages to Mike Vine for new landing page customization. If we can get this done, we can do more specific target marketing on Facebook, with these landing pages. Currently using AdWord grant to get email addresses for newsletter sign up. Matt is working on inputting to MadMimi so that we can directly target/send newsletter.
10. Weekly Doers Meeting, Thursdays 6-8pm at the Quill: This is working well. More folks are attending (average 10-20), and even though we don’t always work on specific projects, it creates an opportunity to fill people in on stuff, which helps when they can share/answer questions on social media. Every other week is LF planning, and I want PorcFest to take the other week as we get closer.
11. Monthly New Movers Party: Going from success to success. Growing (almost too big for Q); considering adding 2nd event, broken along lines of “Families” and, um, Adult-ish? Improvements include more people contributing to the potluck, Chris Lopez has been making signs with new mover names, and stats month-month, name tags, and a microphone for announcements. Movers and locals also need name tags.
12. New Projects:
a. Need to be targeting all the recent FB signers with newsletter, messages about why to move, etc. Need to identify and streamline process.
b. New merchandise–our stuff is woefully out of date. Think we should do bargain blowout sale, and
get new shiny hoodies and bumper stickers, etc.
c. New messaging. Rather than “end of the road” needs to shift to “The start of great things.”
d. Clean up lists and start recruiting movers.
e. As the movers ramp up, need to get more administrative support for Chris. Rhonda Lambert is helping with the signers data input.
13. Random things we need to make time to discuss:
–Strategic vision for FSP from Triggered to Moved, i.e. 5 year plan, and 5+ (I will send a rough outline to get the discussion going). –Succession plans and board composition. Several of you have expressed the desire to cycle off when we Trigger the Move. We need to be planning NOW because it is going to happen sooner than we expect. I’d like to propose that we, at a minimum, identify 1-2 potential replacements for each role. I also encourage everyone to stay on for 3-6 months after the Trigger, to help train and prepare the new guard. We should create a list of clear criteria as well.
Jody moved to adjourn. Matt seconded. Meeting adjourned at 12:20 pm. Respectfully submitted by
Jody Underwood Secretary
FSP Board Meeting
Time/Date: Sunday, July 19 @ 3:00pm EST
Location: 22 Bridge St. Concord, NH (2nd Floor, Ste. 3)
Attending: Matt, Aaron, Carla, Jody, Seamas, Rich (phone), Jason (phone) Meeting called to order at 3:24pm.
1. President’s Report. At end of the minutes.
2. Treasurer’s report. Carla made a motion to increase the print-ad budget from $1500 to $4000. Jody seconded. Rich voted against, everyone else voted for. Ages ago we had voted to do Reason print ads, but we hadn’t increased the budget for it at that time.
3. Fundraising/Donor Packet. Almost done. Carla will send it out to us in the next couple of weeks.
4. Porcfest. Matt gave approximate numbers: 1400 total admissions. The shower trailer was a success. We should offer the showers for free next year. Need to do an attendee survey. Matt will send a document that shows all the PF expenses and revenues that the board will review.
5. New Business
a. 5-year plan. Matt proposed laying out and initiating a five year plan, to include various initiatives that are already underway (fundraising, Ambassadors, etc.) and some new ones, notably a significantly enhanced integrated digital marketing strategy and a public goal of recruiting a large number (ten or twenty thousand?) movers by the year 2020, with a milestone of triggering the move by PorcFest XIII.
b. Board composition. Will be based on the 5-year plan.
c. Dealing with accusations against people. Normally not a board-level issue, now and again these issues come up so we needed to discuss a policy for treating them fairly, especially during events. We would like security to start with a “do nothing” policy unless there is the potential for physical harm.
1. Fundraising: We received a donation for $10,000, not to count toward the matching funds. We are working on a $25K Indiegogo campaign which will launch next Thursday (7/23) to coincide with the anniversary of Jason’s essay being published. We are also planning a press release, a Reddit Ask Me Anything and social media push. Documents for fundraising brochure are almost done. Need graphic designer–would like to hire someone and get it done.
2. PorcFest: Kristin/Matt to give a final written report. This is the wrap up I sent Matt:
“From my perspective, things went very well. Few thoughts off the top of my head:
identifying lead coordinators and building good teams and keeping teams feeling appreciated/rewarded;
lots of professional event upgrades (insurance, showers, AV, etc.);
decentralizing planning/scheduling per venue/event (should try to encourage more one-pot cookoff/BBGDP type events where someone else does execution);
facilities improvements (portajohns, showers, Tim Bauman);
ran smoothly like a professional event (Kristin, you are a goddess!); great banners/designs (PLEASE let’s use these year after year now); lots and lots of First Timers (wonder if this was bc of FB ads?)
Room for improvement: budget oversight;
lack of sponsorships (the assigned person was not the right person, in the end, should be a high-level position going forward, should treat more like donor relations);
custom backend ticket system is not optimal and makes reporting/year-to-year comparisons and succession planning difficult;
started too late with speaker recruitment/tix sales; Roger’s reservation system;
PorcRangers (security) still need more training and professionalism; program design with slipped deadlines and failure to implement edits
I’d love to do a survey to all attendees. If that’s already in the works, I’d like to see it before it’s sent. Most important would be: 1. where did you hear about PF/FSP and 2. Have you signed? If not, will you do so now (link to new or specialized landing page)? If not, why not?
For me, the best part of PorcFest was hearing lead coordinators brag about how many years they’d been working on PF. This sense of ownership and pride over their areas is something your “can-do, let’s-do” attitude really helped cement!”
3. Liberty Forum: Angela and Emmett Harris will be main organizers, working with a team under them, and hope to have Merav act in an advisory capacity. Had meetings with Radisson in June/July, hope to finalize contract next week. Good networking at Freedom Fest for speakers/exhibitors. LF dates: February 18-21, 2016. Need to nail down 1 top speaker, and then work on NH specific programming. Will be right after primaries, so we’ll need to see about how to keep it exciting and fresh and appealing.
4. Freedom Fest: Thanks to all on the board who attended and worked! Went well, having a team of 8 people helped get more signers (24! and at least 7 new Friends). Allowed us to divide and conquer. Not as much donor action as hoped for. Met briefly with Mike Sertic from Harmony and Prosperity Foundation. Networked a lot. Our talk–panel discussion with 5 board members–was well attended and picked up 2 signers there. At least one person said they wanted to see results before signing up, and this session provided that. Jason talked with SFL about a trade; will follow up soon with a formal offer.
5. Upcoming events: SFL regional conferences, scheduled to speak at Harvard in Boston 10/17. Should see about seeding at other locations too. Also, should be looking at food freedom/high-tech/bitcoin etc as new markets. We should come up with a student-oriented flyer.
6. Friends of the FSP Outreach/Ambassador program: Jason hosted town hall yesterday in West Lebanon. Eight non-Free Staters showed up, plus many free staters. Need to finalize new materials for Friends to sign up (postcard/trifold, something)–this should be prioritized so we have them for events going forward. Next one is in Keene, Fri Sept 25, helped by the Swearingens. Matt suggested that we do another one before Keene, Jason is open to it. Theresa Earle wants to organize one in October.
7. Press: Lots of recent, fairly favorable press coverage, incl. Morgan Spurlock Presents Freedom! The Movie; Playboy; Vice; CNN, etc. and comprehensive list here from PFXII: https://freestateproject.org/blogs/porcfest-xii-media-wrap
8. Newsletter: Will drop next Wednesday and cover all media wrap up/post PF/FF.
9. Free Stater Magazine: Need to reevaluate plan for Fall edition – need a new graphic artist lead.
10. Social Media: Matt is spearheading weekly meeting starting 7/22 via Hangouts. Think we need to get a better handle on team/roles etc. and meme generation. SM Group has gotten too big/unwieldy (going to cull) and problem is that folks don’t understand that different flavors appeal to different people, and so we need to be a little more flexible about posts targeted to different audiences. Would like to set up a monthly calendar, with standard scheduled posts (ask to sign, repeats of state comparisons, funding appeals, etc.) in between whatever is in the news/current.
11. Adwords etc.: New landing page results promising. Approx 110-140 new signers through Adwords. Gave material for gun-specific and school choice-specific pages to Mike Vine for customization a month or so ago.
12. Weekly Doers Meeting: This is an informal get together to talk about projects, but hope to have team leads come and present their work and get others to help.
Carla made a motion to adjourn, Matt seconded. Unanimous. 5 pm (a world record!) Respectfully submitted by
Jody Underwood Secretary
FSP Board Meeting
Time/Date: Sunday, May 10 @ 5:00pm EST
Location: 53 Riddle Dr., Bedford, NH
Attending: Matt, Aaron, Carla, Jody; by phone: Seamas, Rich, Jason
Meeting called to order at 5:15
Moved PF report to the end of the agenda so Kristin could attend and give the report.
1. Carla’s status as an employee. Paperwork is in the process and should be done soon. Jason is handling it.
2. President’s Report May 2015 (at the end)
3. Treasurer’s Report. Seamas sent a spreadsheet earlier in the week. We have about $37k between Paypal and bank account. Seamas made a motion to have Kristin and Matt manage the finances for PF. Jason seconded. 6 ayes, 1 abstention.
4. Fundraising/Donor Packet (discussed in president’s report)
5. New Business
a. The future of LF. We discussed the pros and cons. Carla moved to ask the question of whether we should hold LF in 2016. Rich seconded. 4 ayes, 3 noes. Motion passes.
b. Inactive participants: We need to make a new category of people who have asked to be removed from the database, but still are signers.
c. FreedomFest. They sent us a proposal for $5k for certain perks, Carla needs to get back to them.
6. PorcFest Report – Kristin and Matt. Reviewed their budget. Registration numbers are a little lower than the last two years, but they got started later. Still need to find some additional sponsors. Otherwise going well. Will target locals through Granite Grok and other places.
a. Fundraising plan: Have found a volunteer with fundraising experience to help with final documents. Need graphics designer to do a brochure. Still more work to be done.
b. Liberty Forum: Final report for 2014 sent last month. Very successful event. Positive survey feedback from attendees. Will finalize the date/contract with the hotel for 2016. A couple has expressed interest in being the lead organizers. The support LF14 team raised funds to take Merav and Sylvain Yaakov to Crystal Quail Restaurant, where she also received a Thank You gift.
c. PorcFest: From my perspective, very impressed with KW’s approach to team building with volunteers. Impressive, fresh speakers (e.g. Free Range Kids’ Skenazy; police misconduct database Professor Stinson, Bush dynasty Family of Secrets author Russ Baker, strong Seasteading presence, Kinsella, Hornberger, Tucker). Still have a few big asks out (Thiel declined, Patrick Byrne will be in Italy but wishes he could come, waiting on Mackey, Greenwald, Gillespie). Working on media/PR now. I am asking the board to assist with getting more sponsors.
d. Upcoming events: LPEX in Vegas, Randy Clemmons will be attending and handling marketing. New event, so not getting a booth this year. Will check it out, and decide if a different approach is needed for 2016. Freedom Fest in July. Need to finalize details.
e. Friends of the FSP Outreach/Ambassador program: Jason will be hosting town hall type meetings in NH. Ambassador program for PorcFest. We should design and print “Friends? postcards which can be handed out at events. Need active recruitment team at PF.
f. PR Plans/Marketing: Working with Kari dePhillips and Randy Clemens on targeted PR for PF. Hope to attract lifestyle journalists, like GQ, Playboy, Vanity Fair, etc. Documentary film crew was in NH in late March to film FSP participants for new movie “Freedom in America.? Howie Carr Show has finally expressed interest, slated for early June before PF (large audience, in MA, and could be huge for us, especially if able to build rapport). Kashmir Hill, previously with Forbes, now has new show. Talking to her this week (technology focused). NYT videographer interested in following new movers, culminating in PF. Did a “Militarization of LEO? Panel at UNH. Other spokespeople, notably Mark Warden & McGuires, have been doing radio/podcasts.
g. Newsletter & Website: Kristine Boncer has taken over newsletter from Elizabeth Edwards. The transition went smoothly. A “How To? Handbook is being developed for future transitions. New section introduced, including more “lifestyle? elements, like unusual attractions around NH. Kristine is also helping with the PorcFest newsletter, which is dropping every 2 weeks leading up to event. Website routinely updated with fresh content.
h. Free Stater Magazine: Team did not successfully work together. Need to reevaluate plan for Fall edition.
i. Social Media, Adwords etc.: Social media team’s outreach has gone to new heights. “NH vs. Other States? comparisons continue to do well. Total Outreach on FB this week was up 1,100%. Under Mike Vine/Matt P, Adwords campaign has launched with new pledge landing page. Initial results appear promising, within first 4 days received: 3,746 impressions; 162 clicks; 4.32% CTR; $1.39 av. cost/click, Result: 5 signers; 3 addresses. Best performing ad: targeted to people interested in Liberland (seeing about having them attend PF). FYI: to keep the signup process streamlined, on the first page, we are only collecting email addresses. Currently, these signers are being manually inputted into the database, but working with Louis Calitz to automate process in future. Adwords team: Mike Vine, Matt Philips, Franz Honer, Jason Robertson, me. Working with Honer on creating more issue specific landing pages. Had a meeting to make sure all volunteers on same page.
j. Weekly Doers Meeting: Now in its 14th week. Doers have been trained on: Photoshop/Gimp to make more social media memes, how to post to FSP website, press releases, landing pages. Also meant as an informative session about what’s going on so that more people can answer general questions on social media.
Next board meeting will not be at PorcFest. Aaron will set up the next meeting.
Meeting adjourned at 6:45 pm. Jody made the motion, Carla & Matt seconded. Unanimous.
FSP Board Meeting
Time/Date: Friday, March 6 @ 12:00pm EST
Location: Day 1 of Liberty Forum @ JD’s Tavern (Radisson) Attending: Seamas, Carla, Jason, Jody, Matt, Aaron, Rich (by phone)
Meeting called to order at 12:10 pm
1. Minutes from last meeting were approved.
2. Carla’s status as an employee. Jason is taking the lead on setting it up.
3. President’s report:
a. LF kicked off well. We ran out of lanyards on the first day. Weather challenges in other parts of the US are keeping some people away. As a result, the schedule is being adjusted. For example, Nick Gillespie will be arriving late, and presenting another day. Merav is doing a great job. We will do something to thank her.
b. PF: Varrin will get the cabin as a thank you. Matt is working on it.
c. Free State Magazine. Real ads, graphics, articles. Uncoupled from the events. Will not do another one before PF. Next one is in October (holiday feel). Will be posted on the website.
d. Social media. Great team, did a lot of work for LF, FSM, and PF.
e. Newsletter: transition from Elizabeth to Kristine went smoothly. Every time we post a newsletter, we get 6-10 signers.
f. Carla posts nearly every day on the website. Would be good to have more people blog, with some oversight. Can cross-post from other sites. Jason will follow up.
g. Signer update: we have not yet input the 42 from ISFL conference. We’re now over 16,500. Mover numbers: we’re over 10% of signers.
h. Article about movers, reported as a percentage of general migration to NH, got pulled because the database had been read wrong.
4. Treasurer’s Report:
a. LF: We have $88k, which still needs to be used to pay for LF. LF results look good so far. The
estimate is that we will at least break even and likely make some money on it.
b. 2015 budget: We’re combining event line items because it makes sense. The budget will be similar to 2014. We keep about $500 in bitcoin. We anticipate higher revenue because of our new 501(c)(3) status. Jody moved to accept the budget, Seamas seconded. Unanimous.
c. Seamas will fund a $25,000 challenge: he’ll match every dollar donated. It will be announced at LF.
5. Fundraising/Donor packet. This will be a priority in the next month. The board reviewed a draft last month. It’s not quite ready to go out. The magazine will complement the packet nicely. Carla will further prepare the packet and run it by the board again. It will break down details of projects to present to donors. Part of that is sponsoring outreach events. We’re considering calling it the Beacon of Liberty Campaign. Thinking about linking up with something like free-to-use Sales Force that helps keep track of emails, outreach. It would allow us to sync up things like participants who don’t currently get the newsletter (i.e., ask them to opt-in). Will launch the Next 1000 Mover program sometime between now and PF, trying to target past signers to move. Other ideas are in progress.
6. PorcFest. Registration opened today. $5-$10,000 has already been raised. Price is starting at
$45 for the first 250 tickets, and will climb similarly. We’re not putting vendors in the first row of the campground this year (for fear of broken pipelines).
7. New Business
a. Free Keene. People have suggested that the FSP distance itself from Free Keene. We discussed pros and cons, and will not make any changes.
b. The future of Liberty Forum. Postponed.
c. Dealing with inactive participants. Postponed.
FSP Board Meeting
Sunday, Feb 8, 2015 Google Hangout
Meeting called to order at 3:09pm
1. Approval of minutes from 12/7/14 Carla moved to approve the minutes from Dec 7, 2014, Matt seconded. Unanimously accepted.
2. New Board Members This was tabled at the last meeting. We currently have 7 board members. Discussion: Seven is fine for now. If we find anyone who is interested in being hands-on, fundraising, etc., we will consider adding them. Boards benefit from having broad and diverse views. It will be harder to schedule meetings where everyone can show up. Rich moved that we address it again in 4 months at our PF meeting. Matt seconded, unanimous.
3. Carla’s status as contractor vs. employee (to be removed for posted minutes) On the IRS website, it says that officers must be employees. Therefore, we may want to employee Carla directly instead of hiring her as an independent contractor. Need to register with the state as an employer, get a W4, opt out of unemployment insurance as a 501(c)(3), exempt from federal unemployment, but would have to withhold FICA, federal income tax, etc. We want to make sure we’re classifying her correctly to be within the law. It’s not unusual for directors and officers to volunteer at non-profits, as long as they’re not being paid. We’ll get advice from a lawyer about it. Also consider if there’s any retroactive liability. Action item: Carla, Seamas, and Jason will get an expert opinion and act accordingly, make a plan, create a contract.
4. President’s Report (below)
5. Treasurer’s Report 2014 financial report with 2015 projections was sent to all board members. Send questions, and we’ll talk about it at our next meeting at Liberty Forum.
6. Trigger the Move status and strategy Our new outbound approach and efforts regarding direct mail campaign. Sent out 3058 mailers/postcards to existing signers, mostly nearby states. Got some bouncebacks (invalid addresses). Will compare with LF attendees to see what the overlap is.
7. LibertyForum updates In President’s Report
8. PorcFest updates In President’s Report
Next meeting will be at LF, then late April/early May, then PF. Partial Agenda for LF:
The future of Liberty forum Outreach at other events Free State Magazine Treasurer’s Report
Carla moved to adjourn at 4:55pm, Jody seconded. Unanimous. President’s Report February 2015:
1. Fundraising plan to launch at LF: Aaron, Matt, Seamas, Merav and Mark Warden and I met with a soon-to-be new mover who has experience with fundraising. He gave us a lot of good advice, primarily that we should approach people who will never move, but who support the ideals of the FSP. I will be drafting a first set of documents for the board to look at next week, to launch at LF. This donor packet will be complemented by The Free Stater Magazine. Matt P has been looking at online fundraising tools like Nationbuilder.
2. Liberty Forum: I sent you the January Report from Merav last week. Everything is stable, we have gotten more sponsorships than in the past (with Free Grafton/Bob Hull and Ziftr being new), and, as of today, we are breaking even. Walter Block needed to cancel due to surgery, so we have replaced him with Scott Horton from Antiwar.com. We are looking for sponsors/donors to cover his costs ($1,500, and have raised $500 already). I’ll be reaching out to a few more potential donors this week. This strategy of asking to sponsor a specific speaker by covering their costs has worked well, and should be something we should continue to do for future events. Liberty Forum is a LOT of work, we don’t have the resources to compete with the “big guns? (most of the big names who declined us, including Ron Paul, are speaking at ISFL a fortnight before our event). There are more and more competing liberty events and liberty “movements? happening in many geographic areas. We should consider doing something different, where we play up the pros of the FSP (and not be just another liberty conference), perhaps a monthly ticketed event with ONE speaker, maybe in partnership with local colleges. We will discuss this more at our board meeting at Liberty Forum.
3. PorcFest: We’re ready to start selling tickets at LF. Need to finalize the artwork, swag, and website, and figuring out a booking method with Crosby at Rogers. Finalizing the proposal and contract with Kristin this week. Big name speaker solicitation needs to start next week too, and I will be reaching out to the Usual Suspects, and hoping to reach some new voices too, like in the techie community. This approach will likely improve our chance of attracting more entrepreneurs, leading to building a true “Yankee Hong Kong.?
4. Upcoming events: ISFL, Blade, Freedom Fest, etc. A crew of 10+ FSPers are attending ISFL next weekend. For fundraising, we should be targeting bigger (and more expensive) events like the NRA convention, Freedom Fest, etc. Jenn Coffey sent a proposal to go to Blade in Vegas (iirc, approx.
$2,500) and I think we should do it, but send a crew of at least 4 people. Jenn can get a speaking slot (with the powerful narrative of “no knife laws in NH because I ran for office and made it happen?), and I want to give her the go-ahead to start executing. Our best bang for our (nonexistent) buck, especially in trying to maximize volunteer time and efforts, is to take out the biggest sponsorships we can afford (and fundraise to afford better ones) to leverage the efforts of other organizations and their events. We should get the top level sponsorship at Freedom Fest, and dominate their event with our mission. Our new fundraising effort will help raise that money.
5. Friends of the FSP Outreach/Ambassador program: In the monthly signup stats report, we also get a breakdown for Friends. We need to think about creating a simple postcard-sized document that we can distribute to volunteers to sign up friends on the fly. We have a goal to increase the number of In-State friends this year, and need to start taking steps to make this happen. If we had a handy document, we could also train Carla Mora and the ground crew to sign up everyone: either as Participant, or at a minimum, as a Friend. We also need to think about a campaign directed at such friends to convert them into Participants.
6. PR Plans/Marketing: Working on getting media to LF15. Ziftr press release dropped this week. Opportunities currently to market good pro-liberty bills being introduced, e.g. Bitcoin, demilitarization, homegrown, Constitutional carry, school choice, etc. Working with social media team on using this. Have several radio interviews coming up in next 2 weeks to promote LF15/FSP.
7. Newsletter: Elizabeth Edwards will be stepping down as the FSP newsletter editor in March. Kristine Boncer, working with me, will be taking over. We have a training session set up for the March edition. We’ll make the announcement in the next newsletter, and when we do, please be sure to thank Elizabeth for her hard work. I’ll also work on a nice thank you card and gift.
8. Free State Magazine: Currently with Julia Miranda for layout. I edited a lot of the articles, and think it’s going to be a great edition which can become an excellent outreach tool. Aaron: we’re planning, I believe, to print through you.
9. Social Media, Adwords etc.: Facebook continues to grow by about 450-550 likes per week. Twitter’s growth is constant too. Adwords campaign for Liberty Forum has been running. Matt P working on plans to expand to general FSP marketing, with issue-specific landing pages. One idea that came up in the fundraising meeting is to tie campaigns to “change of life? situations that make it easier for people to contemplate moving, e.g. “Empty Nest?? “Graduating?? “Ready to Retire?? “Ready for Change?? etc.
FSP Board Meeting
December 7, 2014
Google Hangout and Aaron’s house Meeting started at 2:25 pm
1. Officers of the board.
Motion made by Aaron to nominate Jason Sorens as VP, seconded by Varrin. All ayes, Jason abstained.
2. Board Composition
Varrin and Sharon are leaving the board. This is Varrin’s last meeting; today is his effective last day. He contributed 10 continuous years, plus a stint before that. Sharon’s last day was effective November
16. Carla made a motion, Seamas seconded, that the board express their heartfelt thanks to Sharon and Varrin for their contributions as board members and for their service and all their contributions. Unanimous.
Criteria for new board members. There is no urgency to bring new people on. It’s good to have an odd number of board members. Merav Yaakov, Mike Vine, and Mark Warden, among others, are being considered. There was also discussion about having an election for new board members. Decided to table this until the next board meeting.
Dual officers policy was updated last prior to reincorporation. Varrin moved to reaffirm this policy, Seamas seconded. Unanimous. Logo use policy. “Unless otherwise explicitly stated by the FSP, use of the FSP’s logo by third parties is not endorsed by the FSP.” Moved by Varrin, Seamas seconded.
Change to current SOI in the Disclaimer policy. Varrin moved, Seamas seconded. Unanimous.
Database information systems policy. Consolidated old policies and updated to outline our expectations, and to keep track of who has NDAs. Varrin moved to adopt, Seamas seconded. Unanimous.
Updated policies will be posted on the website.
4. President’s Report (full report below)
Strategic Plan, Budget, Fundraising. Finished Chris Lopez’s appeal, responses are coming in, still a way to go. Conversations have stalled with Mike Vine.
LibertyForum budget and update. We’re in good shape in terms of tickets being sold.
PorcFest and future events. Looking for an organizer for PorcFest. Rogers has agreed to rent the entire campground to us for 2015.
Libertopia. Carla attended. Not a lot of attendees, so not worth it for signers. But a lot of speakers to meet and spend time with, so good from that perspective.
5. List of Projects for Donors (near the end of president’s report below)
6. Scheduling of Board Meetings. Next meeting early February, then at Liberty Forum. Also hold a session at LF, maybe annual report/presentation instead of q/a, which is not typically well-attended.
Liberty Forum 2015: Team is in place. Have weekly meeting with Merav, and monthly meetings with team/finance. Main focus now is on selling tickets, sponsorships, and finding exhibitors.
LF15 Sales report as of 12/5/2015:
50 tickets sold, 34 of which are basic and the remaining 16 are all-inclusive (projections were that 12% would be all inclusive, currently at 30%, so good news).
13 VIP add-ons were sold (projected was 9% on VIP add-on, currently at 26% so good news). In addition, a la carte meals and t-shirts were sold.
11 of 50 tickets were paid for with BTC.
22 of 50 were purchased from out of state. Got 2 signers through website already.
Goal to break even: 320 paid tickets.
Confirmed “big name” speakers: Sheriff Mack; Patrick Byrne, CEO of Overstock.com; Lyn Ulbricht, mother of alleged Silk Road founder Ross Ulbricht (who will attend if released from jail by then); David Boaz, Executive VP of Cato Institute; Will Ruger, VP of Research and Policy of Charles Koch Institute; Jeffrey Tucker, Founder and CEO of Liberty.me; Walter Block (via Skype); and Nick Gillespie of Reason Magazine.
Programming to focus more on community/people: improv night; speed dating and speed networking; Govern Yourself unconference, arts project, meet & mingles, etc.
LF15 Marketing: Reason ad dropped; Adwords campaign running and need to create issue specific landing pages for target terms; stepping up Facebook/social media efforts.
Price of basic ticket ($99) will increase to $125 on January 1. Marcus Connor created a couple of cartoons to use to promote end of sale. Will start dropping next week. MOST IMPORTANT PRIORITY IS TO SELL TICKETS.
PorcFest 2014: Received final report and draft inventory from Butlers yesterday. Awaiting electronic copy to share.
PorcFest 2015: Looking at candidates to organize. Marcus Connor is working on website look at feel to launch by LF15.
Free Stater Magazine: Now a standalone product, not tied to events, will be launched at LF and PF. Team in place, articles being solicited. Looking at buying reprint rights for some of the good articles from MSM. Goal: A high-quality magazine that makes NH and FSP an appealing destination to quality/stable new signers/movers, with infographics, lots of photos and targeting the audiences identified in the marketing plan I sent earlier this week.
Social Media: Franz Honer spearheading new weekly FSP Doers Meetup at the Quill. Has taught 2 Photoshop classes. Trying to train more graphic artists to help with social media outreach.
Received a $10,000 per month Google Adwords grant. Have to design specific landing pages, and some limitations about what kind of ads can be run (e.g. text only and can’t mention guns–heck, we can’t even list the speaker whose last name is “Ruger.”)
Outreach: Libertopia in San Diego. Small event with probably equal numbers speakers and attendees. One signer. Good opportunity to network with speaker track folks. Gave a good speech.
Advertising/publicity: Running Reason ad for LF15. Documentary filmmakers Warrior Poets (Morgan Spurlock’s company) now slated to come out mid-February. 101 Reasons documentary dropped,
currently at almost 18,000 views! Saw small spike in signers. Hard to correlate because same week newsletter dropped (where we typically see a 6-10 participant spike).
Website/Content: Have been updating website more frequently. Some volunteers have agreed to write weekly blogs. Currently we have “It’s Like This Too on Mondays”, and a “Weekend Warrior” post summarizing the weekly goings on around the state.
Fundraising: Chris Lopez’s admin fund appeal dropped. Raised approx. $1,600 so far. Target is $15K in next 3 months. No progress was made with general fundraising (pls. see separate email sent this week). Need to clean the lists (Aaron and Matt). Suggestion: do a postcard mailing for Liberty Forum to test what we currently have.
Marketing Plan: The projects that we should be spending money on are mostly marketing related (buying FB/Adwords ads, banner space, radio ads, etc.) and targeted mailings to lists we should buy. We also want to allocate resources to doing mailings to all our participants, inviting them to come to LF, encouraging them to move/tell a friend, and to donate (probably different mailings).
We should pick the top 5-10 projects we want to launch in early 2015, and devise a budget for those. Some projects listed below:
1. Direct mailings to participants, $25K
2. Radio ads in surrounding target states and Alex Jones, $20K
3. Banner and print ads in Reason, and think-tank specific printed newsletters, $10-20K
4. Trigger the Move specific materials and merchandise, $10K
5. Donor event/outreach, $5-10K
6. Outreach events/sponsorships, $15-20K
7. Targeted Facebook/Adwords, $10K (this can be revised downwards if we find the Google grant Adwords at $10K per month is reaching the right audience)
Meeting adjourned at 4:40pm; Varrin made motion, seconded by numerous people. Respectfully submitted,
FSP Board Meeting October 12, 2014
Venue: Aaron Day’s house
Present: Aaron, Matt, Carla, Séamas, Jody, Sharon Skype: Rich, Jason
Meeting called to order at 3:43pm Agenda
1. President’s report
2. LF budget
3. Financial policy/Q3 financial report
4. Marketing contract
5. Fundraising strategy
6. Letters of appreciation
7. Events survey
8. Strategic plan
9. Other business
1. President’s report
• Liberty Forum: going well. A good number of confirmed speakers, some speaker requests still outstanding. Website to launch this week.
• Need to focus on sponsor recruitment. $1600 to bring a speaker out.
• PorcFest 2015: no organizer identified yet.
• Ambassador program moving along.
• Fundraising. Need to do more. About to launch another round of support for Chris Lopez. She is willing (and there is work for her to do) to increase her number of hours.
2. LF Budget: Rich proposed approving it as is, Séamas seconded. 7 ayes, 1 abstention. Budget approved.
3. FSP budget/Q3 Financial report
• We’re slightly over budget on a few line items. Seamas moved to add a minimum of $500 to the policy wording, along with notification anytime it goes over budget: “The Treasurer shall inform the board quarterly whenever a budget item goes over budget. All spending more than $500.00 over the budget must be approved by the Board as soon as it becomes apparent.” Sharon seconded. Unanimous in favor. Need to add this statement to the policy document.
• Séamas moved that we adopt this financial policy: “Unless non-cash assets can be used as payment within the subsequent year it is the policy of the FSP to sell them as soon as feasible for cash or cash equivalents. The FSP shall not engage in speculation or hold long-term assets for investment purposes.” Jody seconded. Unanimous in favor.
4. Marketing contract. Made some changes to the Sentinel Consulting contract to do FSP marketing. Matt moved that we increase the Web and email budget line item by $2000 to $5000 for the current year to cover this contract and approve the signing of the contract with Sentinel with an addendum of the statement of work. Rich seconded. Unanimous in favor.
5. Fundraising strategy. The committee will meet later this week.
6. Letters of appreciation. Board reviewed and signed the letters for the Butlers, Mark Edgington, Ian Freeman, Liam Leane.
7. Events survey. Sharon analyzed the survey about people’s impressions of LF and PF. 802 valid responses, 363 attended an event. (15-20 want to sign the SOI. Will follow up with them.) Discussion about smaller events to focus on smaller targets (e.g., family-oriented), perhaps satellite to PF, either at campgrounds or hotels. Noted that it’s hard to get a new event started.
8. Strategic plan. Related to how the events could or should change. Create an events subcommittee to take the survey results and discussion and come up with potential ideas. Rich, Sharon, Jody will be on the committee. Will report back on the issues and some proposals for directions we could go.
9. Other business. No other business. Next meeting: Sunday 11/16, 2-4:30pm
Matt moved to adjourn, Carla seconded. Unanimous. 6:39pm.
Respectfully submitted, Jody Underwood, Secretary
August 2, 2014
Venue: Aaron Day’s house Meeting called to order at 9:30am
Present: Aaron, Carla, Sharon, Varrin, Seamas, Jody Varrin chaired in Rich’s absence.
1. Board structure / Fundraising
• We discussed increasing the size of the board and the implications. The bylaws need to be amended.
• We reiterated that all board members have to be participant signers.
• Having board members who are large donors will give credibility to other donors that the board will manage the strategic plan and associated budget well.
• We considered creating two board committees: fundraising and an executive committee.
• The goal is of the utmost importance: getting 20,000 signers. All events should put this at the forefront of every session (there will be exceptions).
• Sharon nominated Aaron to be chair, pending bylaws change. Seamas seconded. 6-0 passes.
• Sharon made the motion to increase the size of the board, in good faith that the bylaws amendments to increase the size of the board will be ratified, and to appoint Jason Sorens and Matt Phillips (pending bylaws change). Carla seconds. 6-0 passes.
2. Board / strategic:
• Corrected the Bylaws document to reflect changes already made.
• Reviewed proposed changes of the Bylaws.
Took a break at noon to work on the strategic fundraising plan, started again at 5:17 pm.
• Varrin moved to change mission statement to “The Free State Project is an agreement among 20,000 pro-liberty activists to move to New Hampshire, where they will exert the fullest practical effort toward the creation of society in which the maximum role of government is the protection of individuals’ rights to life, liberty, and property.” Seconded by Sharon. 6-0 passed.
• Jody moved that, pending Rich’s approval, we accept the amended bylaws, titled “FSP Bylaws 18-Aug- 2014”, and that they become effective 18-Aug-2014. Sharon seconded. 6-0, pending Rich’s vote.
1. D&O Insurance. Aaron will look into it.
2. Seamas moved to accept the 2014 budget. Varrin seconded. 6-0 passes.
3. Spending policy. The board makes a resolution to hereby authorize the Treasurer to spend money according to the spending policy without needing the President to countersign. The spending policy is reworded as follows:
Expenditure of FSP money shall be approved according to the following guidelines:
1. All spending over the budget must be approved by the Board
2. Within the budget, expenditures less than $1000 can be authorized by any one of the following: Officer or Department Head
3. Expenditures of $1000 or more must be authorized by the President and the Treasurer
4. The standard mileage rate for travel is the standard IRS rate Varrin moved to accept this. Sharon seconded. 6-0 passed.
1. Event proposal. Discussion about whether we should combine Liberty Forum and PorcFest into a single event that combines camping and talks. The discussion evolved into the weaknesses of PorcFest and how to improve it. There have been many improvements over the years, such as about noise issues. Rogers infrastructure needs a lot of work, and the organizers will make an effort to work that out with them in writing. Liability is also an issue. We could survey the community to see how they feel about the events. Sharon will lead the creation of the survey.
Since there are more issues we need to discuss, we scheduled our next meeting to be Sunday, August 24, 2014 at 3:30 pm.
Adjourned at 9:03 pm.
Post hoc: Rich approved all items mentioned via email. Respectfully submitted by Jody Underwood.
FSP Board Meeting PorcFest 6/26/14 Meeting started at 10:10am
Attending: Carla, Seamas, Aaron, Sharon, Varrin, Rich (on phone), Jason Sorens (invited)
President’s report In addition to her regular reports of what’s been done, Carla will also include gaps and things that were expected to be done but are not yet completed or need more resources. There was a request to have more structure in this report, including who is in charge of different tasks.
Sponsor relations 1. In addition to general event sponsors, a Mission Partner (“MP”) category has been created to recognize long-term supporters. Mission Partners will have explicit sponsorship agreements so that terms do not have to be renegotiated for each event as is currently the case. 2. There will be levels with associated perks, going from $10,000 and down. It will be on the website. 3. Jason Osborne proposed a plan to Carla for a FTL MP contract. Séamas will discuss the contract progress with Mark Edgington.
BoD/Sharon’s proposal 1. Sharon proposed an organization of committees to get things done. 2. Varrin moved to propose a leader of the Sponsor Relations committee by July 15, seconded by Rich. 3. Carla will work with Sharon’s proposal, include a description of the sponsor relations position, and present it to the board over email.
State of PorcFest We decided to wait until after PorcFest for the report about its state. Adjourned 11:45am.
FSP Board Meeting Sunday, February 23, 2014
Crowne Plaza Hotel, after Liberty Forum
Meeting called to order 9:13 am
Attending: Carla, Varrin, Aaron (left at 10 am), Seamas, Jody, Sharon, Rich (on skype)
Liberty Forum. Record ticket sales. VIP tickets work well; expenses matched revenues; Discovery Channel, New Yorker, and other media channels were here. We also had a favorable local press. We invited speakers outside the traditional liberty circles, reaching into other demographics, and it was very well received. A tweet-up started the conference, and people were tweeting throughout the Forum. The conference organization team was great. People liked the magazine-style program. There were a lot of first-time people attending. Attendees will be asked for feedback via an online survey. We don’t have final numbers for attendance yet, but one good indication was that the parking lot was sometimes full. In order to grow the conference, we’re exploring alternatives for next year.
PorcFest registration opened this weekend at LF. About 150 people registered. Carla will draft contract with the main organizer David Butler in which operations and expectation will be detailed, including financial overview, reports, and access to bank accounts as needed by Seamas.
501c3. We’re still waiting for a response. We’re considering splitting the organization into two parts, one for 501c4 and one for 501c3. We’ll talk with a lawyer about it. Seamas will follow up in an email.
Budget. Need to come up with our 2014 budget. Seamas sent the 2013 actuals via email, which was reviewed. We discussed how to evolve our relationship with Free Talk Live as we move forward, both with us advertising with them and them sponsoring our events. We’ll continue to discuss all this over email.
Next meeting in April, we’ll use some kind of voice technology instead of Skype text chat. Adjourned 10:13 am.
FSP Board Meeting September 2, 2013
Present: Rich, Seamas, Varrin, Steve, Jody, Carla, Sharon Meeting called to order at 8:06pm
1. President’s report
1. BEARCAT: We raised >$2,000 for the issue.
2. LF14: Will be held at Crowne Plaza Feb 20-23, 2014. Started to invite speakers. Merav Yaakov is co-leading this event with Carla and Liam Greap is working with her on soliciting speakers.
3. PF14: June 22-29, 2014 at Rogers Campground. Since we are now fortunately in a position where we have repeatable teams, so lessons learned, connections, etc., from one event can be used in another event directly. Merav Yaakov is co-leading this event with Carla, and proven teams will be responsible for certain sections.
4. Marketing: Working on criteria of cost/benefit for advertising on sites, instead of ad hoc “sponsor THIS” type deals.
5. Fundraising: Got a $15K donation, and have some other potential donors lined up. Had hoped to get sponsorship for “10th anniversary/FSP Birthday Party” to be held in October (would be new signature event to celebrate the “doers” and do fundraising event but was unable to secure baseline funders in addition to volunteered time and space at the Manchester Country Club, so cancelled). Will be invigorating the Trigger the Move (TTM) campaign as a priority over next few weeks.
6. “Open Sourcing” Projects: Going to be putting projects online and starting to manage volunteer time–fastest way to TTM. Introducing monthly FSP project-based meeting where projects will be publicly managed, with accountability, goals and timelines. This will also help with transparency.
7. Full-Time!: Very psyched to start my new role. Have a great team of people in place, and folks are pretty excited! Lots to do re LF, PF, Fundraising, website/editorial, PR, and other issues.
2. Christopher Cantwell
Board members individually reviewed Chris Cantwell’s post and related Facebook threads before the meeting, and then discussed the situation in detail at the meeting. Rich made a motion to accept the following decision:
Whereas Chris Cantwell has made the following public statements, been offered the opportunity to retract, and has refused to do so: “It’s a terribly unpopular thing to say, but the answer, at some point, is to kill government agents,” and “any level of force necessary for anyone to stop any government agent from furthering said coercion [tax collection in the context of funding the salaries of all government employees] is morally justifiable…”
Whereas the FSP Board believes this view exceeds the right of self-defense.
Whereas the Policy and Procedure for Removing Participants (passed 7/11/04) states: Participants may be removed for promoting violence, racial hatred, or bigotry. Participants who are deemed detrimental to the accomplishment of the Free State Project’s goals may also be removed.
Therefore, according to the Policy and Procedure for Removing Participants, the FSP Board removes Chris Cantwell as a participant and declares him unwelcome to attend FSP-organized events.
Sharon seconded. The vote was unanimous. Jody will draft a letter to send to Chris Cantwell about the decision.
3. Outgoing Board Member: Varrin made a motion to thank Steve Cobb for his service to the Board as its senior member and in the other positions he has held through his many years of involvement with the Free State Project. Carla seconded. The vote was unanimous.
4. New Board Member/VP Position: Rich moved to offer Aaron Day to be a new board member and Bylaws VP. Varrin seconded. The vote was unanimous.
Meeting adjourned at 10:28pm.
Free State Project Board Meeting June 21, 2013
Present: Varrin, Carla, Jody Phone: Rich, Steve, Sharon
At PorcFestX Recorded
Meeting called to order around noon. Discussion
1. Going great. The organization is the best yet. In good shape financially. Sold out of FSP hoodies really quickly, so need some more.
2. The Vines will not organize next year. New organization idea is to have many people managing different aspects and report to Carla.
3. The dates are projected to be June 22-29.
4. Farm to Table lunches with speakers has been great. Carla wants to continue this tradition.
2. Fundraising has slowed down. Some follow-up needs to happen.
Carla will be working full time through August at least. Some people might not be happy since they donated money to support her in her FSP role, specifically to Trigger the Move. However, Carla has continued to work full-time for the FSP, even while holding a full-time job, since Liberty Forum. Carla could keep a timesheet, if there seems to be a need.
3. Liberty Forum.
1. Looking at the Radisson (downtown Manchester) vs. the Crowne Plaza, with a preference for the Radisson 1/31-2/3. Crowne Plaza dates would be later. Dates to be decided next week with Merav.
2. Becky Anderson will help with the newsletter through November.
3. Merav might run LF. Same organizational idea as PF: many people doing “what they love” and reporting to one person.
4. Try to get Lew Rockwell as a keynote.
5. Maybe have a Mises track? An Atlas track? As part of a sponsor package.
4. Need to file for Foundation status asap.
5. The web site will be released next week. First send to Chris Lawless for review and signoff to pay Louis.
6. Presidency. Carla should stay on until we Trigger the Move, but may step down next month. Mark Warden is a candidate to be the next president; we’ll talk to him after the next PorcFest. We need to do a wider search, perhaps look at think tanks.
7. Sovereign Living would like the FSP to sponsor them. Carla will follow up in email, addressing budget and return on investment.
8. Board rotation.
1. We need to recruit. Some feel the organization would benefit from having either Steve or Varrin remain on the board for corporate memory. Jason Sorens is moving to NH later this summer; could consider him.
2. O-list isn’t very active lately. Need to refresh it. Follow up on these issues on the O-list. Add Merav?
9. Need to have a VP (required by the bylaws) and use the framework of the org chart. We should plan to vote on a VP at our next meeting and identify candidates for the other remaining positions.
Meeting adjourned around 1pm.
FSP Board Meeting February 24, 2013
Meeting called to order 1:17pm
Attending: Carla, Rich on skype, Varrin, Steve, Seamas Sharon, Jody at the Crowne Plaza after Liberty Forum
a. Seamas shared 2012 expenditures and compared it to the projected 2013 budget.
b. 501c3 file will be opened in June, so we won’t hear until after PorcFest.
c. Approximately $20k was raised yesterday at LF for Carla’s Trigger the Move campaign.
d. Carla has some promises for more contributions; will plan with Sharon an outreach approach.
e. Jody moved to accept the preliminary budget that starts with the 2012 budget, and also includes the
$20k that Carla raised at LF and $10k for website redesign. Steve seconded. All ayes; Carla abstained.
f. Seamas will prepare a monthly breakdown of prioritized budget items, to be sent to us next week.
g. Rich moved to approve budget via email. Seamas seconded. Unanimous.
1. Web site content.
a. Carla will write it, and will recruit volunteers to help. Target: 3 weeks for release (around March 17).
b. Jody moved to accept web site plan as amended via email discussions. Varrin seconded. All ayes; Carla abstained.
c. Need to fill out Conflict of Interest document. Carla will circulate draft for board review.
1. Liberty Forum debrief.
a. Attendance: they printed 500 badges and then ran out. Highest attendance yet.
b. There was lots of press.
c. Need signup sheets and donate sheets at all events.
d. We did receive some signers.
e. Need to send gifts to Chris, Susan and family, Crista, etc.
f. When LF budget is finished, if there is a budget surplus, decisions will be made as to allocation of these funds, including gifts to organizers.
1. Future Plans/ Expand task force: After we trigger the move, what happens to the FSP?
a. Continue to share our successes
b. Facilitate moves; expand welcome wagon.
c. Form a Foundation.
i. We’ll need to start paperwork soon.
ii. The idea is to keep FSPers focused on smaller government, fund projects.
iii. Keep the FSP brand, and probably go with FSP Foundation.
iv. Vs 501c3: technically there is no “foundation” status. We can be a 501c3 that calls itself a foundation. Ask Brandon Ross about this.
v. Sharon will prepare an outline at the next Board meeting.
Rich moved to adjourn at 2:30pm. Varrin seconded. Unanimous.
FSP Board Meeting January 14, 2013
Meeting called to order at 8:06pm on skype.
Attending: Rich, Seamas, Steve, Jody, Varrin (for a short while), and Carla Absent: Sharon
1. President’s report
2. 501c3, donor packets, and fundraising efforts
3. Free State Now
4. New website
5. Liberty Forum
7. Donor database policy
8. President’s report:
· New signers in Dec = 94, signers SO FAR in Jan = 98.
· Kari is working out great with PR strategy
· FB FSP group’s privacy status changed from “public” to “closed.” The process for new members remain the same (i.e. have to be authorized by an admin). The FSP page remains public.”
· Chris Lopez is still great. We’ll need to do another fundraiser for 2013-14 around May.
1. 501c3, donor packets, and fundraising efforts
· The IRS is currently working on March 2012 501(c)3 applications so, barring them getting even further behind, they should started on ours around May.
· Donor packets should state something to the effect of, “if we obtain 501(c)3 status all donations after late July 2012 will be tax deductible. And that there is no guarantee that we will get it.”
· Donor packets will be ready for Liberty Forum.
· Carla is building a team and will focus on fundraising in the next 6-9 months.
· Some board members have connections to people who used to donate. They will share the new donor packets with them.
1. Free State Now
· Free State Now is up and running with a new website, Facebook page, phone bank. They are revenue neutral and should be considered another “recruitment arm” like PF and LF.
· William Kostric and JJ are running the show. They and Joan Bastek are the primary callers. Carla keeps in touch with them. They have a script.
· They use their own lists, and will not get access to FSP lists.
· Verification: all calls are recorded.
· All workers must sign NDAs.
· Good publicity work.
1. New website
· New FSP web site is being built, but will not be rolled out until LF.
1. Liberty Forum
· Going “swimmingly”, as Chris’s regular reports tell us
· Carla wants to be more involved next year
· Size is limited by venue
· Press is being invited to attend – targeting 75-100 journalists
· Mike and Vanessa Finger are the main organizers, along with Jason Osborne.
· Website looks good and should launch soon.
· Carla will have first big meeting with whole team 1/20.
· Tenth anniversary! Hoping to go BIG!
1. Donor database policy
· Discussed having a policy similar to the participant database on donor information. Seamas drafted a policy:
Financial reports will be provided to the Board by the Treasurer on at least an annual basis.
Donor names and addresses should be treated as highly confidential information. Everyone who receives such information must first sign a non-disclosure agreement. The President and Treasurer get a complete copy the Donor Database with appropriate updates. Anyone else who wants the donor information needs a reason for getting it, needs to get permission from the President, and gets the smallest possible subset of information required to do the job. The President will notify the board of all such filled requests.
· Rich asked to add that the database file should be encrypted/protected. It’s probably fine to share it only via Google Docs.
· High-level donor info will be included in Treasurer’s yearly report.
Meeting adjourned at 9:25pm.