Operations Meeting 3/1/04 Minutes
Participating: Amanda P, Tim C, Dave M, Seth, Doug H, Adam Rick, Eric
Williams, Matt C, Tom P, Jean A, Phil D
- AEI Meeting
- Panel discussing the FSP and Federalism
- 1/2 hour TV show in New England
- Amanda's been getting a lot of "random" email and "random" people
- Board members resign
- Reason magazine doing an article on FSP
- Liberty magazine also working on an article on the FSP
- based on a "post-heroic" model
- The Quill -- Member Services and/or Publicity?
- Tim will do Member Services
- Director of Development position open
- fundraising experience good, but not necesssary
- writing/communication skills
- not afraid of asking for money
- Starting Wednesday, Doug will focus on outreach, but not as intensly
for the next month. Amanda will focus on strategy, finance, and
- Amanda and Jean working on it and it'll be finalized in the next coupla
weeks. Please send any other budget requests if you think of them.
- Going live on Wednesday or Thursday, but maybe not if we
can't get some membership database issues solved.
- Matt will check database integrity
- Eric and Adam will continue to look for programmers and
Finding Ways to get volunteers to work - Dave Mincin
- Amanda's list:
- mention on libertarian internet forums
- write LTEs
- call into talk radio
- attend meeting of other orgs
- ask for speaking engagements
- ask someone to join (SOI)
- shadow ad ops
- local group meeting or start one
- will take 'How to Help' list and Amanda's and put it on the activist
- doesn't want to make too long of a list, maybe we can
categorize the list instead
- personal interaction
The Chuck Issue
- local groups feel free to ban him from yahoo groups if he's being disruptive.
- We need to make it clear to people who are moving whom they should
Office in NH
- some leads, but nothing concrete
Q & A
- Are we actively pursuing media contacts?
- Media analysis
- how do we increase news items?
Operations Meeting 3/18/04 Minutes
Participating: Jean Alexander, Seth Atwood, Tim Condon, Phil Densch, Doug
Hillman, Dave Mincin, Keith Murphy, Tom Parker, Amanda Phillips, Karen Pratt,
Adam Rick, Brian Sullivan, Alan Weiss
- Budget for Fiscal Year 2005 (April '04 - March '05)
There is concern about accurately projecting revenue, as there is no
historical data. Point was made that there was some information gathered during
fund raising for the vote, which collected approximately $9 per person.
Jean and Karen introduced the idea of trigger points for budgeting
purposes, with spending levels tied to YTD revenue collected. We could either
change the spending percentage for various areas, or add in lower priority
items. Amanda opened to the floor for questions and comments.
Comment: Focus on primary mission of FSP and concentrate spending there.
Question: What's our most effective tool? Outreach/word of mouth #1,
advertising, less effective.
Question: What's in the budget for promotional items? Will we buy mailing
lists? Yes, Doug already has Libertarian list for MA.
Are we budgeted for direct mailings? Yes
Comment: Local groups can absorb costs for printing, travel expenses.
Comment: There used to be a recognition page recognizing donors. Is it
still on the site? It was a good motivating tool. Yes - in
Back on budget, four largest areas are administration, travel, advertising
and printing. Supporting details for expenses included in these areas were on
separate page of budget spreadsheet. Totals are not set in stone. If Board
approves the trigger points up front, we can just automatically update spending
limits as revenue goals are reached.
Question: Where are we on C3 status? Beginning application process. May
not happen until 2005.
Suggestion: Keep history of all donors, but make current donors more
Request from Jean: resend budget items by tomorrow for various areas, but
rate 1-5 for how important.
Question: Does budget include FSP office in NH? Not in the plans at this
Question: Official address in still in NV - why not NH? Incorporated in NV.
Question: Should we have Karen sign some type of fiduciary agreement? Left
open (for the record, I don't mind)
Question: Does budget have provision for misc. expenses that come up? Yes,
reserve fund to be set up.
- Upcoming Events
NORML convention April 22nd in DC. Will we get table?
Freedom Fest May 13th -15th in Las Vegas. Seth and Jason attending, along
with members of local group.
LP convention end of May in Atlanta. Doug getting table.
Killington Airlift- arranging a flyover to drop NH care package to town
manager. Need a Porc on the ground. Seth working on publicity. Get a Union
Leader reporter in the plane?
Question: Anything planned for April 15th Tax Day? Not a FSP project -
can't protest legislation, but could hand out literature for FSP outreach. Can
Keith coordinate local groups so we have visibility?
State conventions coming up. Local groups in best position to track and
bring to FSP's attention.
NRA meeting coming up April 16th and 17th in Pittsburgh. Tim would like to
have a presence. Dave Mincin may be able to arrange with local group.
Republican Southern Leadership conference and Young Republicans meeting in
FL. Young Republicans may be a better target group.
Suggestion: We need a new position - events coordinator. Counter: Have
liaisons gather that info and set up speaking engagements.
- Activists' Center
It's up and running. We need to get more groups interacting on the forum.
Comments - local groups use Yahoo - all discussion stays within the group.
Suggestion, share solutions, best practices and get ideas on the forum, use
Yahoo for internal planning and discussion.
Dave Mincin requested that he be updated on the status of volunteers he
finds for various projects. Suggestion: Put together a spreadsheet of
volunteers and the projects they've been assigned to so we can monitor
availability. Alternate: have Dave follow up by e-mail with person requesting
volunteer to ensure they've been contacted and status in the project.
Porc Fest: Will we do volunteer recognition at the event? Amanda working
on a project.
- Publicity Director Update
Lots of outreach events in progress.
Trying to organize our media contacts. Please send Seth the info for any
media contacts you have.
We're working on endorsements from celebrities & notable libertarians.
Personal contact is the best way to get these. If you know anyone, please
contact Seth. Seth has a spreadsheet he's using to track the progress on all
the endorsements & contacts.
Suggestion: Put Seth's spreadsheet on the web somewhere. Counter: It has
personal information & may not be appropriate.
- Redundancy, train your replacement!
We need redundancy so when something happens to one of us, someone else can
step up and handle our jobs. Also so we can go on vacation or take care of our
day jobs without leaving the FSP hanging. Amanda asks that everyone begin to
look for their replacements from within their core volunteers. Look for people
who show initiative, teamwork, enthusiasm, motivation, & dedication, and
start to train them in what you do.
- Operations Reports
The Board asked for Ops reports from Amanda before every board meeting
(second Saturdays of each month). Amanda put the last ops report together off
the top of her head. For future ops reports, please send Amanda the info on all
your accomplishments throughout the month. Send her a note with "ops report" in
the subject line. You can send her this info throughout the month as you think
of it. Also, Amanda will send out a request for ops report info a week before
the board meeting.
Next meeting - 1st Monday, 4/5/04, 9 p.m.
(Note: This page is not advertised to the general community)
Forms & Templates
Local group guidelines for membership
database by Keith Murphy (5/18/04)
- HQ/Local reimbursement idea by Keith Murphy (3/24/04)
Expenditures are a great deal more complicated. These fall into two broad
categories: things for which FSP HQ should pay for 100%, and things for which
FSP HQ should pay 50%.
- 100% -- basic outreach
- Table fees at events (within a $200 limit)
- Printing (most members just eat this themselves, but set a reasonable
per month limit)
- Any speaker's expenses (within a set limit, i.e. hotel, mileage.
Again, most members don't ask for reimbursement)
- 50% -- advanced outreach
- Preapproved locally placed ads ($250 limit)
- Pre-approved activist efforts, i.e. local pen distribution ($250 limit
- Registration fees at events (i.e. convention fees)
- Banners (ordered through FSP HQ source)
- Shirts for volunteers (50% of cost, ordered from FSP HQ)
- Preprinted outreach material, inc. bumper stickers (50% of cost,
ordered from FSP HQ)
Official FSP Welcome
- Welcome Letter
FSP Operations meetings are at 9 pm ET and are generally
on the 1st Monday and the 3rd Thursday of each month.
|02/19/04 || Thurs || Agenda
|03/01/04 || Mon || Agenda
|03/18/04 || Thurs || Agenda
|04/05/04 || Mon || -
|04/22/04 || Thurs || - || -
|05/03/04 || Mon ||-
|05/20/04 || Thurs || - || -
|06/08/04 || Tue || - || -
|06/17/04 || Thurs || - || -
|07/05/04 || Mon || Cancelled ||
|07/15/04 || Thurs || - || -
|08/02/04 || Mon || ||
|08/19/04 || Thurs || ||
|09/07/04 || Tues
|| Cancelled ||
|09/16/04 || Thurs
|| Not held ||
Operations Reports Log Book
FSP Operations Meeting
2/19/04, 9 p.m. eastern, 6 p.m. pacific
Dial 800-416-4956, passcode = 18590405#
If you have trouble accessing the conference call on Thursday, please call
Amanda P at 617-763-1996 for help.
Note: The meeting will be no more than 1 hour. If we don't get to all of
the agenda items within 50 minutes, we will table remaining agenda items for
the next meeting. We'll reserve the last 10 minutes for general Q&A.
- Guidelines for the meeting
- Update from the President Amanda P who I am, where we are,
where we're going, how we'll get there. Overview of the Board's strategic
- Update from the VP Doug H focus on grass roots activism.
- Organizational Structure Amanda P higher-level org chart,
request for help & feedback with org chart details, discuss open positions
(Treasurer, Publicity & Fundraising).
- FSP Budget Jean A and Amanda P status of the 2004 budget,
need requests from the "dept heads" for specific budget items.
- Speaker's Bureau Update Phil D
- Local Groups Update Keith M
- Community Liaisons Update Chris H
- PorcFest Update George R or Tim C
- Merchandise Update Trevor S
- Advertising Update Amy F
- Pioneer Directory Amanda P and Cal P
- Publicity Amanda P
- Membership Surveys Amanda P
- Fundraising Ideas Amanda P
- Non-Voters Status Amanda P
- Friends of the FSP Amanda P
- Endorsements Amanda P
- The Underground Railroad Amanda P
- General Q&A Amanda P, Doug H, Matt C (The Officers)
Please contact Amanda P with agenda changes.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
FSP President Amanda Phillips resigns; Varrin Swearingen to be
| Amanda || || Varrin
March 7, 2006
Dear FSP Board of Directors,
Please accept my resignation as President and Director, effective
immediately. Working closely with the Free State Project, and especially with
our remarkable participants, has been a great joy for me. However, the time has
come for me to focus more on law school and to spend more time with my
daughter. I'm happy to leave the future of the project in your capable hands.
I am happy to continue to work on publicity and media relations, and remain
your faithful spokesperson. I remain committed to the Free State Project, and I
joined the First 1000 today.
March 11, 2006
Thank you for your service to the Free State Project and to the future of
individual freedom. In your twenty-five month tenure as President of the FSP,
approximately 1,800 new participants signed on, and the FSP was featured in Reader's Digest, New England ABC's Chronicle program, Liberty magazine,
American Handgunner, and Reason magazine, to
name just a few. The Porcupine Freedom Festival has
grown to the largest libertarian event in the world, an achievement we mean to
defend this year!
While it will be impossible to replace you with someone who has all your
unique attributes, we will do our best to continue your legacy with a chief
executive of whom we can all be proud. We appreciate your willingness to stay
on as media representative and wish you the best in your studies at Harvard Law
Jason Sorens, Chair
For the FSP Board of Directors
March 13, 2006
The board has accepted Amanda's resignation with gratitude for her sincere
efforts towards freedom in the last several years. We are also pleased to have
achieved consensus on a new president,
Varrin Swearingen, who will be officially voted in at our next board meeting on 3/19. Varrin, who has worked
tirelessly above and beyond the call of duty in several FSP roles including VP
of Operations, last year's Porc Fest Czar, and in
numerous other ways, has the respect and admiration of the Board and
volunteers. We look forward to working with him, to reaching our signup goals
for the First 1000 Pledge and the FSP Statement of Intent, and to ultimately achieving liberty in
our lifetime in the Granite State. Varrin, a current
resident of New Hampshire, is willing to accept this role, and the Board
appreciates his commitment.
# # #
Statement by the Free State Project Board of Directors
As we pass the two year anniversary of the choice of New Hampshire as the
Free State, and our four year anniversary as an organization, we have paused
to take stock of our progress.
One of our longstanding goals has been to reach 20,000 signatures by the
end of 2006. While not outside the realm of possibility, this goal now seems
unlikely to be reached. The reason for this is apparently a much lower level of
national media attention since the state vote
in 2003. The good news is that our growth rate remains steady, that Free
Staters are already moving to New Hampshire, and finally, that we think we can
improve our media attention substantially in the coming months.
Armed with these facts, we decided to take stock of where we are and of
what we need to do to move forward toward the extraordinary goal we all share
a truly free society.
First of all, we have dropped our goal of reaching 20,000 signatures
by the end of 2006. While this was an informal part of the Project we
recognize that some found this an important element of their commitment. We're
requesting that people who thought this goal was essential to their
contact us to let us know of their intentions.
We are not setting a new goal for reaching 20,000, but we expect to
increase our recruitment rate (more on that below) and reach that goal within a
reasonable time frame.
Our second decision is that changing the existing Statement of Intent is
not warranted at this time. We considered allowing a variable or additional
threshold for moving, but realized that moving sooner or at a lower threshold
is possible without any new, complicating Statements of Intent. We can always
revisit this issue at a later time, but it would be premature to make any
fundamental changes now.
Third, we recognize that the success of the Free State Project really
depends on actual movers, and we are now actively encouraging all participants
to move as soon as they are able. We are expanding our New Hampshire
Information efforts and will provide focused help to liberty-minded movers on
finding jobs, housing, and the right community to fit their needs. The more
people move now, the sooner the freedom community will make an even greater
difference in New Hampshire, and the more people will be willing to sign up and
move. We want to increase the pace of that virtuous circle.
Finally, the Board has decided to hire a public relations company for a
specific project of developing local media stories. We will need your help to
make these stories happen! Some of you will be hearing from us shortly. If you
get a message from us about this project, please make yourself available. We
are actively considering hiring a public relations firm on a permanent basis
to help us improve our messages and create a consistently high level of
excitement and interest. This strategy should help us increase recruitment
dramatically, getting us ever closer to 20,000 and to liberty in our lifetime.
FSP Board of Directors
Free State Project Participation Guidelines
- The Free State Project (FSP) shall not require dues or contributions of any
kind for participation.
- The FSP shall require all prospective participants to sign a Statement of
- that they will move to New Hampshire, the state designated according to the
rules laid out in these Guidelines,
- that they will be bound by the Guidelines, and
- that they will work toward a society in which the sole role of civil
government is the protection of individuals' rights to life, liberty, and
The Statement shall become void three
years after the time of signing should the designation of the state not have
occurred by that time (No longer applicable)
Once 5,000 people have signed the
Statement, voting shall commence on a state where all participants should move
and register to vote (should they choose to register to vote). All sufficiently
small states will be considered. The voting shall proceed according to Simple
Condorcet's Method.* All ballots shall be made public to avoid subterfuge;
miscounted ballots shall be corrected before the outcome is officially
declared. (No longer applicable)
- Once 20,000 people have signed the Statement, participants in the FSP shall
move to the state decided upon as expeditiously as possible and absolutely
within five years of the crossing of the 20,000-signer threshold. Should the
Project never attract 20,000 signers, the move shall be aborted.
- If these Guidelines are amended, anyone who has signed to an earlier
version shall be given an opportunity to withdraw his consent.
* Condorcet's Method works by allowing
voters to rank all the states from #1 to #10, and these rankings are used to
compare each state to every other state in one-on-one contests. If a state does
not lose any pairwise contest, it is the winner. If no state is unbeaten, then
smallest-magnitude defeats are eliminated until a state is unbeaten. For more
information see the
voting methods report. (No longer applicable)
Trigger the move
Support our campaign to get to 20,000 Participants in the next 2 years!
A Re-Examination of the State Comparison Matrix
by Jason S.