Boardwatch Report: June 25, 2019 SFBC Board of Directors Meeting

Momentum priority areas of interest

  • governance and transparency
  • reducing auto use in San Francisco

were discussed during the June SFBC Board meeting in the following items:

Agenda Item 6 – Committee Reports

The Organizational Strengthening Committee is looking into a variety of measures of “organizational strength,” including diversity.  We asked if the committee is considering the proportion of members who vote in annual Board of Directors elections.  We think this is a useful measure of member engagement.  Currently the level is less than 15%, although it has risen a bit over the past few years with Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) and member concern about a proposed by-laws change to eliminate member voting (2015).  Mary Kay Chin responded that they would consider including that measure. 

Agenda Item 7 – Fundraising Training:

(1) We saw information on all of the revenue categories for the SFBC, a plus for transparency.

(2) Brian Weidenmeier offered a training to the directors regarding fundraising best practices.  The training included a transparent discussion regarding the sources of SFBC revenue,

The presentation on fundraising emphasized the critical role that individual contributions play in the revenue for the SFBC. Median/modal individual contributions were reported to be approximately $100 per donation last year and were described as best facilitated by directors presenting a personal narrative that outlines the what/how/why the donor benefits from making a donation and cultivates trust in the organization that the individual is giving to.

Agenda Item 8:  Donations Policy Blog Post and Member Survey Question regarding Donations

Background: Because of some members’ and board members’ distress over the acceptance of donations from companies related to automobiles in 2018, the board is considering a change to the current, somewhat unclear, policy. The governance committee (Mary Kay Chin, Shirley Johnson, Kelli Shields, Andy Thornley, and Juli Uota) facilitated a discussion on two action items requested by the board

  • a blog post on donations (blog post idea was dropped)
  • development of a member survey question regarding SFBC donation policy.  

Possible Questions
The SF Bicycle Coalition relies largely on donations to accomplish our mission of promoting the bicycle for everyday transportation. How would accepting donations from _____________ impact our reputation as an organization that advocates for people on bikes?

• Automobile companies
(Very positive impact / positive impact / no impact / negative impact / very negative impact)

• Autonomous vehicle companies
(Very positive impact / positive impact / no impact / negative impact / very negative impact)

• Transportation network companies (e.g., Uber, Lyft)
(Very positive impact / positive impact / no impact / negative impact / very negative impact)

• Bike share providers
(Very positive impact / positive impact / no impact / negative impact / very negative impact)

• Bikes share providers owned by transportation network companies (e.g., Ford GoBike/Bay Wheels, now owned by Lyft, or Jump, now owned by Uber)
(Very positive impact / positive impact / no impact / negative impact / very negative impact)

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