Officers for 2019-2020

Will Hughes, President 
Tania Moore, Vice-President
David Bender, Communications Director


Minutes from the Columbia Fiction Foundry Annual Meeting 2019 

October 12, 2019

1) read 2018-19 Annual Report, 2) voted on and approved the roster of candidates for next fiscal year, including Will Hughes as President, Tania Moore as Vice President, and David Bender as Communications Director, and 3) voted on and approved our new official By-Laws document, updated to reflect the latest CAA standards. Everyone who responded to membership email soliciting votes before the annual meeting was in favor of both our new officer candidates and our new By-Laws.


Annual Report

2018-19 Columbia Fiction Foundry Annual Report

The Columbia Fiction Foundry had its tenth anniversary in 2019 and in doing so passed many new milestones. During our past fiscal year, we expanded our writing workshops to twenty sessions, with almost twenty new members participating in one or more of these. We also hosted five special events featuring a total of eight different guest speakers. Furthermore, we addressed the key challenges posed in our prior fiscal year’s annual report: 1) updating our official By-Laws document to conform to the latest CAA standard, 2) conducting a survey of past and present workshop participants for insight how to address their needs better, and 3) adding fresh, relevant content to our website.

More work remains to be done, though, and new challenges confront us as we move forward. We continue to have ambitions to support alumni outside the NYC area with online workshops as well as various social media resources. We also want to sustain and broaden our outreach through special events in upcoming months. Additional help will be required to support these various activities. Most of the Columbia Fiction Foundry’s current slate of officers are available to serve another term, but Richard Hensley will be unable to continue as our group’s president because he’s moving outside of the NYC area.

 Therefore, we are soliciting volunteers. If you are receptive to contributing a bit of your time and leadership for our next fiscal year, please contact one of our group’s current officers: Tania Moore, David Bender, Will Hughes, or Richard Hensley.

 Richard Hensley

CFF President

Officers for 2015-2016 Year

Hensley2.jpg Julia_Kite4.jpg   Ralph_White.jpg  
Richard Hensley
 Julia Kite
Vice President
   Ralph White

Adoption of Minutes of Prior Year’s Annual Meeting

Minutes were not kept for the 2014 Annual Meeting.

Governance Documentation

Our governance has been loosely constituted, for while we did elect officers we had no Constitution or By-Laws to codify our procedures and to govern those officers’ elections or responsibilities, or to establish a mission for them to pursue.  That deficiency needs to be remedied with the adoption of governance documents.  It may seem nuts that a band of dreamers like us would need governance documents but recall that we are an officially constituted Shared Interest Group under Columbia University’s Office of Alumni Affairs and Development and we are subject to their overall mission.  We are also beneficiaries of their generosity.  They reserve this delightful room for our use; they provide a robust website; and they have provided numerous gifts for our guest speakers. We’re fortunate, too, that, without exception, all of the Alumni Office staff we deal with are competent and pleasant.  All in all, governance documents are a small concession.  Not only that but they will ensure that our organization will remain as it is presently constituted well into the future, and that any modifications are done by design and by consensus.  Proposed governance documents were posted on our website a month ago and both workshop and cyber-members have had the opportunity to review them and comment.  We’ve made several changes in response to your input.


It is the CFF’s practice to accord voting privileges to workshop members who have attended at least half of the preceding year’s workshops.  Officers earn a vote through their service even if they do not meet the attendance threshold.  By these metrics the following members are accorded votes at this meeting:  Jack Burger, Joan Faier, David Gulley, Richard Hensley, Jon Hull, Julia Kite, Jen Kitses, Rhonda Moore, Cynthia Mullock, Rochana Rapkins, and Ralph White. 

 Adoption of Governance Documents

May I have a motion to adopt the Constitution and By-Laws as they appear on the website?  Ms. Kite so motioned and Ms. Kitses seconded the motion.  All in favor say “Aye.”  All opposed say “Nay.”  Are there any absentions?  The motion carries unanimously and the Columbia Fiction Foundry now has governance documents.

  (See link here for the current CFF Constitution, as adopted on Sept. 12, 2015.)

 Election of Officers

The Board of Governors’ proposed slate of nominees for the upcoming year is as follows.  President: Richard Hensley.  Vice President: Julia Kite.  Communications Director: Bill Marden.  Literary Editor: Ralph White.  Are there any other nominees for any of these offices?  Hearing none, may I have a motion to elect the slate of nominees proposed by the Board of Governors?  Mr. Berger so moved and Mr. Hull seconded the motion.  All in favor say “Aye.”  Opposed say “Nay.”  Any abstensions?  The motion carries unanimously and we have our new officers for the coming academic year.  Welcome to incoming officers Bill Marden and Julia Kite.  Thanks to outgoing officers, Cindy Mullock and Shanan Essick for their contributions.

 Old Business

According to the minutes of the 2014 meeting our only Old Business was governance documents and we’ve already dealt with that.

 New Business

Under New Business I’d like to point out that your officers considered and decided against forming a 501c3 tax exempt organization and also against opening a bank account to accommodate financial transactions and to create a Treasurer position on the Board.  The CFF currently has no fees or dues so there appears to be no need at present for the above actions but this is an issue which should be revisited periodically.

 Additions to Posted Agenda

  • Asha Kaufman, Director of Shared Interest Groups asked to speak.  Ms. Kaufman said that it is her responsibility is to support communities associated with the University.  She thanked Mr. White, outgoing President, for forming and running the CFF during its first six years.  His is a noteworthy achievement and his use of the Nation Builder has been exemplary.  Ms.

    Kaufman presented Mr. White with a lapel pin honoring him as a Columbia University Alumni Leader.  Mr. White also received a model of an Audi A8, in Columbia Blue with the crown logo on its roof.  Mr. White thanked Ms. Kaufman and acknowledged the honor. 
  • Incoming President Richard Hensley commented that he would like to see the role for the cybercommunity extended.  He also pointed out that the many events we’ve hosted and have planned are highly constructive and in line with the CFF’s central mission.

 Mr. White asked if there was any other New Business or other matters to discuss. Hearing none he asked for a motion to adjourn the meeting.  Mr. Marden so moved and Ms. Faier seconded.

 The 2015 Annual Meeting of the Columbia Fiction Foundry was adjourned at 10:34