Association Meeting Minutes – Jan. 20, 2012



Friday, January 20 2012

Cove Ridge Center


Present  Ron Short, Joy and John Mullen, Ishmael Richardson, Wanda and Bob McConnell, Jean Brown, Margaret Crouch, Megan France, Sally Kelly, Joe Fuller, James Stallard, Barbara and Benny Reed, Jim Addington, Dale Taylor, Charlie Allen, Dr Lawrence Fleenor , Libby Mumpower, Anne Sturgill, Steven Starnes, Erwin Forrest, John Stafford, Sharon Ewing, Robert Reeves, Justin Moore.


The meeting was called to order at 12:02 by Vice President Joan Short, presiding in the absence of President Joy Nihil.

Joan Short introduced visitors Steven Starnes, a new member, associated with Netherland Inn; and Libby Mumpower, Title 1 teacher at Powell Valley Primary, who will present today’s program.

The minutes of the November Association meeting were approved as posted on our web site on a motion by Benny Reed, seconded by Charlie Allen.

Treasurer Joe Fuller presented a summary report.  It is included in the minute book.  The Association has a total in all accounts presently of $32,882.69.  The report was approved by a motion by John Stafford, seconded by John Mullen.

Park Reports:

Sharon Ewing of the Southwest Virginia Historical State Park at Big Stone reported that they have a new virtual exhibit featuring Appalachian art and music performed by Ron Short, a DBWTA member. Their planning is in process for the 2012 Gathering in the Gap Festival on Memorial Day weekend.  The featured performer will be Marty Stuart. This will be the third year of their historic bus tours.  The Southwest Virginia Museum will do its Wilderness Road tour multiple times. Dr. Lawrence J. Fleenor, DBWTA Historian, is the volunteer guide.  All Park activities will be on the state park website and on the Friends web site,

NTSP:  Megan reported that the Wilderness Trail Institute will begin on February 7.  The Park has printed a brochure and copies were shared with area schools.  Megan and Joan have visited schools in Wise and Lee County.  Enrollment is increasing and Lee County is able to fund their teachers’ tuition.  Randell Jones, author of In the Footsteps of Daniel Boone, is the presenter for the class on March 20. He will present a lecture on Boone at 7 PM in the Cove Ridge Center. This lecture is free and is open to the public. Dr. Fleenor will be the opening presenter of the Institute. Park Manager Ishmael Richardson praised WT Institute founders Megan and Joan for their hard work.

Program: Libby Mumpower, Title I teacher at Powell Valley Primary, presented a a reading project for kindergarten students she developed after participating in WT Institute.  It integrates VA SOLs with history of the Trail.

Board of Directors’ Report:  Proposed changes to the bylaws approved by the Board at their December meeting were presented by Megan France and Sally Kelly.  These were approved on a motion by Sally, seconded by Dale Taylor.  The amended bylaws will be distributed electronically when completed.

Spending Projections from the Finance committee were distributed by Margaret Crouch and discussed.  The projections were approved on a motion by Benny Reed, seconded by Forrest Erwin.  The projections are included in the minute book.

Audit committee:  Dale Taylor announced that he, Ron Short and Joe Fuller will meet after the Association meeting today and present the report at the March meeting.

Events Committee:  Bob McConnell, on behalf of the Committee and the Association, presented to Park employee Robert Reeves a plaque in recognition of all the good work he has done for DBWTA, especially his work and supervision on the construction of the new blacksmith shop.  Joan Short reported that our annual ad in Muzzleloader Magazine has been placed.  Old Christmas was a fine success with nearly 100 in attendance.

Bob McConnell reported for the Nominating Committee the following slate of officers and Board of Directors:  President – Joan Short, Vice President – Dale Taylor, Secretary – open, Treasurer – Joe Fuller, Historian – Dr. Lawrence Fleenor, Board of Directors – Joy Nihil, Past President, Jim Addington, Charlie Allen, Erwin Forrest, Willis Grimm, Sally Kelly, John Mullen, John Stafford, and Jim Stallard.  The election of officers and Board members will be held at the March Association meeting.  Bob explained that, in the absence of a volunteer for the position of secretary, he has asked Craig Seaver if there is a park employee who could do the work for the Association on an hourly basis.  Gretchen Cope is willing and able.  He asked that the Board create a simple contract at its February meeting.

Old Business

Bob reported on a meeting he and President Nihil had with David Cate regarding our web site. They concluded that the Association needs to reassess the web site, consider upgrades, and to determine what we wish it to accomplish.  Then a decision can be made as to whether to stay with Times News or look for alternatives.

Bob reported for Charlie Allen regarding the Natural Bridge site.  It is now owned by DCR.  An adjacent property is for sale and efforts are being made to get the Nature Conservancy to purchase it and donate it to DCR.  Once that land is acquired, DBWTA will look for funding to improve the site.  The total acreage would be about 500 acres.

New Business

No new business was brought before the Association.


The meeting was adjourned at 1:15 on a motion by Bob McConnell, seconded by Benny Reed.


Respectfully submitted,

Sally Kelly, Secretary